Artwork courtesy of Mike R.
I’m not sure about all of you guys, but the fact that every round of golf I’ve played this year has been in below freezing temperatures has really taken some of the fun out of my pre-tKO tournament routine. But with less than a month left until the big day, I think it’s time we fire up the hype machine. The board has decided to make a few changes to the format of this year’s event, in order to step up the competitive spirit of the weekend….and provide everyone with more chances to win booze. Both the Friday and Saturday morning rounds have been slightly altered to make sure we will all hate each other by Sunday afternoon.
So this year when you pull up to Cobblestone on Friday, don’t plan on a nice, relaxing round of golf and chance to catch up with some of your tKO bros. In fact, you probably shouldn’t even talk to your opponents, because THERE ARE COLD BEERS TO BE WON. Get all your shits and giggles out while you’re on the road, because once you step out of the van, it is game time.
I’ll get to Saturday morning in another post, but here’s how Friday is going to work. Since White James and Mike R. are the only people to have ever won the RDGC Cup (WTF Rich and Mike C.?!) they have been designated as team captains. That’s right, we’re going Ryder Cup style on Friday, with ATLien Mike R. representing ‘Merica and White James reaching back to his Anglo-Saxon roots. Mike R. and WJ alternated picks to build their teams of twelve. Two players from each team will be paired off against two from the opposite team in each foursome. All four golfers play their own ball throughout the round and each hole is won by the team whose total score is lower. Handicaps will be applied for this round. Mike and I will have your scorecards marked for you, so if you are an idiot don’t worry about trying to figure out the handicap thing. Each hole will be worth one point, ties will be worth a half point. Whatever 2-man team with the most points at the end of the round wins the match. You guys know how this goes. Whichever team , Mike R. or White James, has the won the most matches at the end of day one, congrats, you just won a shit load of beer.
We’ll be broadcasting…LIVE FROM THE BEST WESTERN…on Thursday night, May 16th, when we will release the two man teams, who they will be paired up against, and most importantly, what tee time they’ll have. The kicker is that neither captain knows what the other captain plans on doing until we broadcast. You might want to reach out to your team captain if you don’t want to be put in the first tee time, with everyone watching you, hoping that you air ball two times in a row, and then your bag falls off the cart as your drive away because you didn’t strap it in correctly. Or maybe you want to play with a certain teammate that calms your nerves because you know you need a good round one to compete in the RDGC or Bixler. Or you know you want a play with Jeremy because he has iPhone speakers, but don’t really mind losing your match (#SHOTSFIRED).
As mentioned early, here are the teams picked over email correspondence by Mike R. and White James, with some commentary provided by their respective captains. Rosters are listed alphabetically, as to not embarrass the Brady Quinn’s of this year’s draft. However, it’s very important that you all know that I was the first pick. LEBRENDAN JAMES.
Austin – Tough selection, I trust that Austin’s quality time with Columbus co-eds has relieved some tension in his body and will allow for a good opening 18.
Ben – Based on his stats last year, he should’ve been picked about 4 spots higher. Scores show he’s struggling with his new clubs but hopefully this will light some fire under him. No more green room for you, Ben. On to the winning team.
Brendan – He is the White James’ COOLER is every way imaginable. And if I choose my pairings right, having him bring you down in Round 1 will only help my cause. [Commissioner’s note: #1 pick.]
Bryce – His past scores at Kendallville don’t do him justice. I know deep down inside there’s a warrior waiting to emerge. Perhaps a King v Bryce match up could bring out the best in him.
Greg – Cause when you’re able to add a dapper gentleman, you just GOTTA do it. Greg will be coming off his honeymoon, which gives me some cause for concern, but there’s something special about that Kendallville air (maybe it’s all the cigar and cigarette smoke?). Gives everyone an extra pep in their step.
Jeremy – With his move to the burbs to be completed after tKO VII, I’m hoping to truly get his last great effort before he retires to mowing the lawn on the weekends.
Kevin – Even though he’s a Michigan fan (of the Walmart variety), he wins back my trust with his support of Everton Football Club. Toffee pride! [Commissioner’s note: Kevin is not a fan of Everton. Way to know your team, cap.]
Mustang Mark – Go ‘Stangs! The true backbone of tKONN. Our 30 for 30 is going to be amazing.
Nathan – [Commissioner’s note: I had to remove what was really discussed here, because I was told it might not be a great idea to put on the site. However, it was awesome.]
Rich – Rich is one of the few with Cobblestone Round 1 scoring record is sub 90….oh, you didn’t think I had a huge spreadsheet with all tKO stats from all time? WRONG, bro.
Wally – I figure both Yoshi’s equals like almost 100% of one Asian, so I’ve met my quota too.[Commissioner’s note: Technically, Mike, you only have 75% of one Asian.]
Curt – He can play a little “loose” at times, always living life on the edge. After his DNF at TKO VI, I have faith that he has spent the offseason pondering the far reaching implications of that decision on his life. I think he is going to come into TKO VII focused and ready to go.
Danny – One of the most memorable exchanges of my life. I meet Danny 30 minutes before we are to tee off in TKO V. He is in my cart. He tees off on #1 and pulls slices the ball 86 degrees left onto the 9th fairway. He proceeds to try to hit the ball directly through a forest for the next 5 shots. Finally, he completes the hole and gets into the cart. He looks at me and says, “You know where I went wrong on that hole?” I say, “Your tee shot?”
King George – THE KING. ‘Nuff said.
Ian – By making this pick I deprive Mike of the “comfort” and “mental stability” that his long-time friend Ian provides. On the flip side, Ian is now on my team and his score counts against me. We will see where the net benefit falls out.
Asian James – I have to meet my Asian quota. Also, he has been playing a significant amount of golf since he got married. I will be asking him how he has pulled this off.
Keith – He needs to bring his game both for golf and for BMFD.
FNG Mark – Last year Mark shared a cart with me during his inaugural round at TKO. Not coincidentally, he had his best score of the weekend.
Marty – Marty clearly has this Bixler strategy down. He has played once this year raising his handicap back up toward pre-TKO VI levels. Step 2, go to Kendallville and dominate (The Bixler). Additionally, he shot 88 there last year so he has proven he can go low (stats? I got stats!). Finally, but most importantly, how intimidated will his opponents be when he is playing in the Bixler?
Mike C. – Cahill usually dominates Cobblestone like the gym dominates Robinson. It isn’t until Glendarin that he usually stumbles. Additionally, he is usually still relatively sober for this round, so that is a double bonus.
Mat – Feel like he probably should be slotted in here, but I don’t know.[Commissioner’s note: Shane, get your boy on fairway files. This only looks poorly on you!]
Shane – Lowered his handicap 2 strokes this spring already. Clearly he is focused on his game and not settling for the Bixler. Plus another Asian can’t hurt right?
Commissioner’s note: Kevin correctly pointed out that the team names should be “Euro” and “‘Merica”, so this has been updated.