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COMMENTARY BY JOE BIDDLE: Tour Championship won't change Snedeker

Nashville golfer Brandt Snedeker hit the jackpot Sunday.

He pocketed $11.4 million by winning the Tour Championship and the final leg of the FedEx Cup.

Don’t think the money will go to Snedeker’s head. His father, Larry, let Brandt and older brother Haymes know early on that whatever they purchased, they had to pay for it. No lay-aways. No putting a down payment on something and acquire monthly bills.

There won’t be any extravagant spending, even though he and wife Mandy will never have to worry about where their next meal is going to come from.

Brandt drives a five-year old GMC Yukon Denali.

“Why should I get a new car?’’ Snedeker asked the media at Medinah CC. “My car only has 24,000 miles. It is a new car. I never drive it.’’

Snedeker comes from a grounded family. Larry was Nashville’s city attorney while his wife Candy owned a pawn shop.

Brandt and Haymes learned to play golf on Metro public courses, primarily Shelby and McCabe. Only after they developed their games could they use the family membership at Hillwood CC.

After Brandt won the U.S. Public Links championship, he brought the trophy back to Shelby and put it in the clubhouse.

Sunday marked the first time Snedeker has won a tournament from the lead. He was solid on a day when the wind at East Lake CC in Atlanta was brisk and the greens were lightening fast.

“I’m a lot better under pressure than I gave myself credit for,’’ Snedeker said.

I think professional golf is one sport where your success is determined by what you have between the ears. It’s a mind game and confidence can ebb and flow.

“When I play my best golf, my best golf is some of the best in the world,” Snedeker said.

He needed that confidence after dunking his tee shot in the water on No. 6 and wound up with the dreaded double bogey.

He rebounded two holes later, draining a 40-foot birdie putt.

“That was huge,’’ said Snedeker. “It was a two-shot swing.’’

On this day, no one was going to catch him. Not Tiger Woods. Not Rory McIlroy. Not Justin Rose, who was tied with Snedeker after three rounds.

Snedeker was composed, confidant and relaxed. Earlier that day he visited the son of his swing coach, Todd Anderson, at a rehabilitation center in Atlanta. University of West Florida student Tucker Anderson was involved in an automobile accident and is in a responsive coma at the Shepherd Center.

Tucker could wink with one eye and give Snedeker a fist bump.

Tucker is like a little brother to Snedeker. He was on Snedeker’s mind Sunday and he drew inspiration from visiting him and realizing there are more important things than sports.

“I’ve been playing the best golf of my career,’’ Snedeker said. “It has taken a lot of hard work to get here.’’

This week, he will play in his first Ryder Cup competition. He was one of four captain’s picks by Davis Love III. He wants to show Love that he made the right choice.

It has been the most productive year of golf Snedeker has experienced. And to think he missed a month with a rib injury, or it could have been even better.

But you won’t hear him complain.

“Life is all about timing,’’ Snedeker said.

Right now his timing is perfect.


Sports Columnist Joe Biddle is a four-time sports writer of the year in Tennessee. He can be reached at

Posted on: 9/26/2012


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