She’s seventeen years old and a sports star that some might hail as the most talented in her league. Towering in excess of six feet tall with jet-black hair and a commanding disposition, it doesn’t take long to guess the identity of the ultra-popular female golfer, Michelle Wie. Part golfer, part celebrity, Wie has attracted much attention over the past few years regarding everything from golf and charitable gifts to clothing and college.
But does Michelle Wie really deserve all the media attention? By default, any individual under the age of twenty-one who rises above the cut in their class is subject to superstar status. But it seems that lately she’s been having trouble making the cut, especially with regard to her recent exemption.
If you’ve stayed up-to-date with Michelle’s golfing status, you’ve already noticed a slight decline in her winning streak. Her most recent blunder was witnessed at the Sony Open, where she missed the cut playing in her own home state of Hawaii. Critics aren’t holding out much hope that she’ll pull her act together by the upcoming John Deere Classic at Deere Run in the Quad Cities.
History is certainly not on her side, either. In 2005, she aligned herself perfectly during the John Deere Classic for breaking Babe Zaharias’ 1945 record in becoming the first woman to succeed in a PGA Tour event. But a bogey and double-bogey prevented her from completing her win. And just last year, even this Hawaiian, whom one would ordinarily think should be accustomed to the warmer elements, fainted and withdrew as a result of heat exhaustion. Who would’ve thought Quad City heat could be so much more exhausting than Hawaii? Nonetheless, it affected her play, and once again, she failed to make the cut.
Physical odds are also against her at this point. During the Sony Open, Wie performed with an injured right wrist, a cause not improbable for the results of the play. Shortly thereafter, she fell on her left wrist while running, inflicting injury to it as well.
Unlike her critics, however, Michelle Wie is sporting a hopeful, optimistic attitude. Just recently, in commenting on the second installment of her PGA Tour, Wie states, “I am really happy to be returning to the John Deere Classic. The people of the Quad Cities have supported me and rooted for me like no other. I feel very warm and loved at the John Deere Classic.”
But can Michelle win? No doubt her fans will be praying for her wrists to be in good working order and a 75-degree week during July 9-15, but it will take more than good conditions to make her permanent mark on golf history. Even despite the slim likelihood that Wie will pull through the John Deere Classic with a record-breaking achievement, there’s always a chance someone as strong and driven as Michelle Wie is capable of rising against criticism and beating the odds.