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October 12, 2011

Webb Simpson


JOEL SCHUCHMANN: Webb Simpson, thanks for joining us. You had a couple weeks break after a long season, you won twice and finished second in the FedExCup standings. You played well here last year. Maybe some opening comments about having that break to recuperate and get ready for this week and maybe some comments about coming to play the McGladrey Classic.
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, it was nice to be home for two weeks. We didn't really do a lot the first week, and then last week I started practicing and working out again, getting ready for this week. I wasn't 100 percent sure if I was going to play or not, but I played well last year, finished 12th, and loved the event, loved the golf course, and it's nice I can drive from Charlotte. So it's good to be back, and I think we're done with the rain, so the course should be nice for Thursday through Sunday.

Q. So you go from all the attention on $10 million to all the attention on $87,000 or whatever the number is? Does that seem kind of weird to you?
WEBB SIMPSON: It does. You know, I wasn't sure if I was going to play, but Luke played well all year, and since I started making a run for the money title, it became pretty important to me to win. You know, it's similar to TOUR Championship; it's hard not to focus on it. But we're just trying to go out and play as well as we can, and if we win the golf tournament, it makes it all the better.

Q. If you're successful it'll be two years in a row where the FedExCup champion and the Money List leader were different. In any way do you think that confuses people about the importance of either one nowadays?
WEBB SIMPSON: You know, I don't think so. I think there's more emphasis on the FedExCup champion, I think as there should be. I think you get a five-year exemption for FedExCup winner as well as a Money List title. But I think they're in their place. If you win the FedEx you're considered the best player if not one of the best two or three players all year. They're probably equally as hard to win. You've got to have a little more timing in when you peak for the FedExCup.
But I was talking to my wife about it, if you win the Money List, you're probably added to a list of maybe 50 guys. I'm not sure. I'm sure Tiger has won it close to ten times, and you've got Vijay has probably won it multiple times. So it would be a pretty prestigious list to be a part of.

Q. The name of the trophy is the Arnold Palmer trophy, so what's that -- first of all, what's your experiences of dealing with Arnold and what would that mean to you to have that trophy?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I've gotten to know him pretty well. I played in Bay Hill twice as an amateur from winning the Southern Am, so got to know him, great guy. But I wish I knew him better. But I think he's playing the Wake Forest pro-am this Monday, which I'm playing. But it would be great. You get anything with his name on it, it's got to be pretty special.

Q. Why is the Money List important to you to win, just because of the names on it?
WEBB SIMPSON: Well, I think to have your job secure for five years is pretty important. You know, I've got a three-year exemption right now, but any time you can get five -- this game is crazy, you've seen guys play great their whole career but maybe other guys are up and down. So you never know. The other thing is it's pretty cool to say that you -- not made more money than everybody else, but in that category you were the best player all year.
I think I may be a little bit -- I still need to do a little something more to get Player of the Year, so I think if I could somehow squeak it out and win the Money List, that would just help.

Q. We talked about this at Barclays that it was wide open for Player of the Year and the Playoffs would kind of sort it out. Did it?
WEBB SIMPSON: I mean, I think right now you could -- it's hard. I think you could argue four guys pretty easily right now. My caddie and I are going back and forth. The thing I wish I knew a little better was the definition of Player of the Year, because it's -- I think most people think it's like the MVP for basketball or football, but it's really not. I think it's more of kind of what you've achieved at certain points in the year.

Q. What does Player of the Year mean to you?
WEBB SIMPSON: I mean, I think as Player of the Year reads, it should be the guy who played the best golf during the entire year, and so I mean -- I think consistency is part of it, I think being in contention and winning golf tournaments is all in there. I don't know, I guess it's up to us players to vote, which I forgot.

Q. You forgot what?
WEBB SIMPSON: I forgot that the players vote on it. I'm just putting kind letters in people's lockers this week.

Q. Like the Cy Young Award probably?

Q. Did you vote last year?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yes. I can't remember who I voted for.

Q. Would you tell us if you remembered?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah. I'm sure it was either Kuch or Furyk, right? I can't remember.

Q. How much has Paul Tesori meant to your success this year? What's the dynamic there? I know you hit the shots, but what's he contributed to the total package?
WEBB SIMPSON: You know, he's been a huge part. Caddies don't make, in my opinion -- a relationship like Paul and I have, I told him last night in the car, if I was being fair, you would get paid a lot more because I feel like he's as equal part of the team as I am. If he comes to the golf course and he's mentally not really ready to play, then it affects me.
A lot of guys I see don't rely on their caddies as much as I do, which is fine, because it's just the way they like to do it. But I rely on him pretty heavily. He's helped me not only with me not just managing my game and managing these golf courses, but with my swing and with my fundamentals, as well. It's been a great package, and to be friends off the golf course has been an added bonus, as well. We get along great. We're rooming together this week. We're good friends as well as coworkers.

Q. He was all-SEC at Florida; he was good enough of a player to have gotten his card at one point and then lost it. Somebody with that kind of caliber as a player, has that been a help as opposed to maybe somebody who has a 20 handicap?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, to have a guy who's been through pretty much everything you're going through, he knows what it's like to hit certain shots, he knows -- he's been through everything I'm going through. And it's like my college golf experience, having Jerry Haas as a coach who played on the TOUR, he played the game, is just -- you can't trade it for anything because I see these other college coaches, and no offense to them, but it's just nice knowing that the guy coaching you and teaching has been through what you're going through as opposed to seeing it from the outside looking in.

Q. If you're speaking in interviews, as you've done most of the year, what's the difference between using "we" and "I"?
WEBB SIMPSON: I mean, I think I just totally believe in him as he's part of the team. Paul is -- I don't make any decisions without him, and so I don't feel like I win a golf tournament, I feel like we both do.

Q. We hit 7-iron?
WEBB SIMPSON: We hit 7-iron, yeah.

Q. There's a few I's in there every now and again. Do you just slip?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I think it's just more of a slip than anything (laughing), yeah.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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