How would you grade Tiger Woods' apology?

Four Corners

February 22, 2010

A more human Woods

Dave Hyde, Sun Sentinel

This was a Tiger Woods we had never seen. Human. Sincere. Contrite. Within the admittedly cool and controlling confines of his personality, he seemed like a person trying to get his patch of life in order.

He said all that could be said. He used words like "deeply sorry" and "irresponsible" and "selfish." He said, "I'm the only one to blame."

He also gave as good and simple an explanation of how he lost his way.

"I felt that I had worked hard my entire life and deserved to enjoy all the temptations around me," he said. "I felt I was entitled."

Maybe it's me. Maybe I'm a sucker. But he sounded exactly as you'd expect a man who has been through his last three months to sound. Flawed. Contrite. Broken. And, for once, very human.

It served its purpose

Teddy Greenstein, Chicago Tribune

Tiger Woods' "I am deeply sorry" speech was like an abstract painting -- open to interpretation.

I've heard from people who say they now "feel sorry" for Woods and just wish the self-important media would give it a rest. I also heard from a guy who wanted me to examine a supposed scar outside the right edge of Woods' mouth. He not only believes Woods isn't sorry about his self-described "irresponsible and selfish behavior," he remains adamant that Elin attacked her lying husband with a 9-iron.

My take? It did the job. The only thing Woods loves more than women is golf. And he barely talked about it. Only a reference at the end to "one day" coming back to play. To me, that means he's serious about cleaning up his life and slaying those demons.

He's not out of rough

Jeff Shain, Orlando Sentinel

It's not likely Tiger Woods changed many minds with his "Sorry, world" presentation. If anything, the public might have been left more polarized.

Friday's 131/2-minute speech offered all the elements avid Tiger fans needed to offer forgiveness -- the golfer admitted to affairs, said he was sorry and acknowledged he has put his life on hold to enter a treatment program.

Maybe Woods didn't even have to do that much to earn a pardon from the "You Da Man!" element. NFL and NBA players face -- and too often give in to -- the same temptations, and all they want is to see Tiger stripe a 5-iron to kick-in distance again.

But for those who the last three months served up one punch line after another, Woods' stiff delivery on a tightly controlled stage lacked enough warmth to soften the cynic's heart. He's still in deep rough with them.

Mixed emotions

Diane Pucin, Los Angeles Times

Tiger Woods meant it Friday when he expressed anger at the media's attention to his wife and children. He meant it when he said reports that he used performance-enhancing drugs were wrong.

You knew this because there was real emotion in his voice.

During the apology portion of his scripted statement, read from a piece of paper in a soulless meeting room, there seemed no detectable emotion. Not anger or sadness. Remorse? Tough to say.

Where the statement seemed totally lacking in detectable sentiment was the part where he talked about playing golf. Yes, he will. Someday. Maybe even this year. But there was not a hint of passion, no clue that Woods is desperately eager to be on the PGA Tour. Wouldn't that be something? If he's lost his love for golf?

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