Not for the mess that has become of his life and golf game ... for that, he gets full blame. His soon-to-be-ex-wife, Elin Nordegren, is reportedly in line to get at least $100 million in a divorce settlement. And anyone who saw Tiger play at Firestone Country Club in Akron last week got a glimpse of something equally ugly, the No. 1 player in the world sleep-walking around the golf course, taking little time between shots and probably wishing he were somewhere else, anywhere else.
He seemed to take more care on Sunday signing an autograph on a golf glove for the fan he struck in the face with an errant shot. His 72 holes at Firestone included 10 birdies, 22 bogeys and three double bogeys. He did not match par any day and finished at 18 over par, beat one pro in the 80-player field and wound up 30 shots behind Hunter Mahan.
Tiger enters the year's final major, the PGA Championship starting Thursday at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wis., still the No. 1 player in the world (technically), but far from the best player in the field right now. Blame him for all of that.
But stop blaming Tiger for all the attention lavished on him in the nine months since he cracked up his Escalade at the end of his driveway in Florida last November. No, the blame must be shared: by anyone who has continued to care what a so-so golfer is doing week in and week out; TV networks that continue to waste air time on a guy who looks a lot like me when I'm hacking my way around the local muni; lazy reporters and columnists with so little initiative that they ignore real news in the world of golf; people who don't immediately turn off the TV and do something more meaningful with their lives, like mow the lawn; and folks who buy those tabloid rags at the supermarket check-out stand looking for the latest juicy gossip on a fallen hero.
I hate to say it, but that means the blame falls on almost all of us.
We need to get beyond Tiger Woods. Until he becomes a world-beater again on the golf course, he's yesterday's news.