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Arizona Daily Star (Tucson)
Two huge trailers sit side-by-side near the driving range at the Omni Tucson National Resort.
One is full of treadmills and weights. The other has foam rollers, balls, and tables for stretching, heat, and electric stimulation treatments. Both are part of The Massage Envy Player Performance Center, a mobile fitness and therapy center set up at the Cologuard Classic.
Physical therapist Paul Schueven mostly treats injuries related to the golf swing, notably spine, shoulder and hip ailments. But he's also treated bee stings and wear-and-tear injuries.
"There is a lot of repetition," he said. "These guys have been playing for 40 or 50 years."
Athletic trainer Kent Biggerstaff mans the trailer with the treadmills. Biggerstaff, who spent 36 years as the Pittsburgh Pirates' trainer, helps the golfers work on their core strength, balance and flexibility. All are keys to staying healthy and productive over the grind of a season.
The mobile performance center -- and the trainers that work inside -- travel with the PGA Tour Champions golfers to every tournament. That allows the golfers to work with the same trainers, therapists and chiropractors every week during the season.
"Half the guys on the tour wouldn't be playing without this," golfer Michael Bradley said. "Of all the perks we get -- the free food, cars -- this is the one thing we can do without. They know exactly what your issues are and it's so much easier for us. They are a godsend."
'Stupidest' rule change irks Mediate
The USGA has announced changes to the U.S. Open's playoff rules. Starting this year, golfers tied for the lead will play a two-hole aggregate, with the low man winning. If the golfers are still tied after two holes, the tournament will go to sudden death. The new rules replace the traditional 18-hole Monday playoff.
Rocco Mediate, who played one of the most exciting U.S. Open playoffs in 2008, losing to Tiger Woods, thinks the new rule is, well ...
"Yeah, I already said it's the stupidest rule I've ever heard in my life," said Mediate, who shot an 8-under 65 on Saturday, the best round of the day. "Every major should have 18 holes. Well, it's about the TV. Since when were U.S. Opens decided because of television? It's terrible, but I'm not the ruling body. I love the USGA, don't get me wrong, but 18 holes ... every major should have 18 holes. Some of them used to be 36 in the old days, so I mean that's insane, but 18 holes for sure.
Mediate said his battle with Woods was "a good one."
"Sometimes they are not that," he said. "Sometimes that's the hard part about an 18-hole playoff. ... Like I said, I know they did it probably because they wanted to have the champion on Sunday. I understand that, too, but not for majors. Sorry. I want 18 holes on all of them. Then we can watch more golf."
Tucson's Hogan Lust is all for watching more golf. The 12-year-old was named for golf legend Ben Hogan. His young brother Parker's middle name is Nelson, after Byron Nelson. The boys' parents, Corby and Daniel, are huge golf fans. They founded the non-profit The Cascade Foundation of Southern Arizona, Inc., to help children with hemophilia. Hogan Lust was diagnosed with the disease as a baby.
The Lusts served as honorary observers Saturday for the group of Bernhard Langer, Woody Austin and Bradley. After walking the full 18 holes, Hogan collected signed balls from all three golfers. Bradley gave him a signed glove.
"It just an incredible feeling to be with these people," he said.
Hogan's favorite part of the day? Walking the course with all the players, including Langer, who's one of his favorites.
Cologuard held a "50/50 challenge" on the 16th hole Saturday. The company offered $50,000 to the Vince Lombardi Foundation and another $50,000 to the First Tee of Tucson if a player hit a hole-in-one. Cologuard already gave the foundation $50,000 on Wednesday, before pro Jerry Kelly and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers teed off in the pro-am.
No one got a hole-in-one on 16 Saturday. On Friday, however, Paul Broadhurst aced No. 14.
Donna Darnell, a U.S. Air Force veteran and a single mother of two, was the recipient of a 2014 Volkswagen Jetta, as part of the National Auto Body Council's Recycled Rides program. The program overhaul used cars to give to veterans as a thank you for their service.
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