The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Black History Profile-Woods fights biases to earn Tiger moniker

By Chris Cates/sports editor

At 30, Tiger Woods is atop the golfing pyramid.

Speaking in terms of success (12 major tournament wins, 75 total tournament wins), money (highest paid athlete last year, raking in $87 million), fame (ranked fifth among Forbes magazine’s Top 100 Celebrities in 2006), whatever, Woods seems to have everything.

But life was not always this easy for Woods, according to Amazon.com. Growing up, he was often kicked off of golf teams for absolutely no reason and was discriminated against on multiple occasions. On his first day of kindergarten, Woods was tied to a tree and had rocks thrown at him by fellow students.

But, according to Wikipedia, Tiger fought through it. With the help of his father, Earl Woods, he became an excellent golfer, outplaying kids more than twice his age on a regular basis. Considered a child prodigy, Woods appeared on The Mike Douglas Show at 2 and also made appearances on multiple other shows by 5.

Perhaps the most important aspect of Tiger’s life was, in fact, his father, who died last year after battling cancer. His dad taught him everything about golf, and the two shared very emotional exchanges at some of Tiger’s more recent tournaments. When Earl Woods died, Tiger took two months off to be with his family.

Sports figures as successful as Tiger Woods earn a podium with which to endorse and promote almost anything they want. And unlike many athletes in the same situation, Woods has used his fame for good.

He founded the Tiger Woods Foundation in 1996, an organization that offers programs, junior golf teams, scholarships and direct grants to children.

Woods has brought an entirely new audience to the game of golf: blacks and young people. Having become the face of golf, he has drawn more interest in the game.

At 3, he shot a better nine-hole score (48) than many average adults shoot. He became the No. 1 ranked golfer in the world and the youngest to win the Masters … the same year he could drink legally for the first time. The progression of Tiger Woods is seemingly a once-in-a-lifetime anomaly.

Born in 1976, Tiger has been a professional for 10 years. His real name is Eldrick Woods, but after earning the nickname Tiger as a child, he’s been known as Tiger Woods ever since.

He has his own video game; he is the face of Nike; he has a supermodel wife, and he is a “successful golfer”—what more could one ask for?

He’s rewriting the golf record books at an alarming rate, but that is just half of what Tiger Woods brings to the table. As a role model for young children, a proponent of education and an all-around good guy, Woods has firmly entrenched himself near the top of the world.

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