Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 1/11/12

Tim Tebow grew from Gators legend to Broncos legend over the weekend.

Football season is in high gear and it’s all I’ve been writing about for the past four months.

The NFL Playoffs began last weekend as Tim Tebow delivered the Miracle at Mile High with a Denver Broncos victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The BCS National Championship was a predictable snore-fest ending in Alabama’s 21-0 shutout victory over the LSU Tigers in the 2012 BCS Championship game.

 

It’s Golf Season

But in case you failed to notice, and most fans probably did, the 2012 PGA Season officially kicked, er, teed off last weekend with the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in Kapalua, Hawaii.

Steve Stricker kicks off 2012 PGA Season with a win at the Hyundai Tournament of Chamions in Kapalua, Hawaii.

The indefatigable Steve Stricker (-23), winner of eight tournaments in his last 50 starts, nearly led the tournament wire-to-wire and eeked out a three-stroke victory over runner-up Martin Laird (-20).

Last year’s winner, Johnathan Byrd (-19), and Webb Simpson (-19) tied for 3rd.

Stricker never relinquished his lead in the tournament after heading to the clubhouse with the 36-hole lead on Saturday, though his five-stroke advantage entering Monday’s final round dwindled to one on the front nine as Byrd gained ground on the eventual winner.

Stricker eventually settled down and regained control of the tournament, shooting a 4-under 69 on the Par 73 Plantation Course for his fourth consecutive round in the 60s.

The victory moved Stricker up to No. 5 in the world golf rankings and, perhaps more importantly, earned him the early lead with 500 FedExCup points in the clubhouse.

 

Exciting Days Ahead for the PGA Tour

2011 was an exciting year for PGA fans who saw four different players win the four Major Championships, but the season was also a bit disappointing as many of the top young European stars, including guys like Rory McIlroy, Martin Kaimer and Lee Westwood, spent most of their time playing across the pond on the European Tour due to a rule the PGA had in place that forced non-full-time PGA players to play a limited stateside schedule.

In 2012, the PGA has relaxed the rules a bit and McIlroy and much of his European crew are slated to play a full American schedule this season.

McIlroy could become the Tour’s dominant force this season to replace the Tiger void and usher in a new era of professional golf, though Americans Dustin Johnson, Bubba Watson and Rory’s ideal rival, Ricky “Puma” Fowler will try to have their own say in determining the upper echelon of PGA royalty.

But whatever happens on the PGA Tour in 2012, everyone will be chasing Stricker, at least for the first week.

The PGA’s next stop is at the Sony Open in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Aloha.

This article first appeared on isportsweb.com and was syndicated with permission.

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