Tiger Woods, who’ll be on the sidelines nursing an elbow injury during this week's AT&T National, has set a number of trends on the PGA Tour. He raised the bar for physical fitness among today’s players, made the swoosh fashionable among youngsters like Rory McIlroy and Michelle Wie, and his traditional final-round red-and-black threads were legend long before Rickie Fowler began dressing like a neon pumpkin on Sundays.
But Woods is 37, playing against young guns like Fowler and Keegan Bradley, who insist on covering their heads with caps that sport visors that would make a duck-billed platypus jealous -- and that are just as ridiculous looking. So when a reporter asked the world No. 1 during a Wednesday press conference whether, by wearing his “Sunday red,” he was partly responsible for some of the "distinct" fashion statements on tour these days, Woods demurred.
"Definitely not the flat bill," he said with a laugh. "Nooo, not that one."
As for his signature Sunday colors, Woods said he began donning the scarlet hue since before attending Stanford, nicknamed the Cardinal, and figured the shibboleth was one worth continuing.
"I've worn red ever since my college days basically, or junior golf days -- big events on the last day," said Woods, who hoped his strained elbow would be healthy enough for him to contend in the British Open in three weeks. "I just stuck with it out of superstition, and it worked. I just happened to choose a school that actually was red, and we wore red on our final day of events. So it worked out."
With a bit of success under his oh-so-'70s-ish white belt, Woods said he'd stick with the variations on the crimson cast that he figured helped him chalk up 78 tour victories, including 14 major championships.
"I've had a few wins wearing red," he said, "and it's not going to change."