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What Rory McIlroy has in common with Tiger

        Rory McIlroy was gracious in saying that he never could supplant the legacy of Tiger Woods at Augusta. He also was correct. McIlroy has a chance to be a 21-year-old green jacket winner today, as Woods was. But it won't be the transforming event that Woods' win was.

         What they do have in common, however, is that they got as far as they did so quickly with devoted support of parents. Earl Woods famously ushered Tiger on the way to greatness; to the point of getting him booked on the Mike Douglas Show at 2.

          McIlroy's father Gerry has a photo of little Rory hitting golf balls at 18 months old--a family shot, not a national TV appearance. Gerry and his wife Rosie did acknowledge Rory's potential early on and did everything they could to get him where he is today. Gerry worked 100 hours a week. He tended bar at Holywood (yes, one "L") Golf Club, where Gerry was a 2 handicap. Before and after those shifts, he worked at a sports club, cleaning showers and toilets. Rosie worked the night shift at a factory.

          It's what parents do for their kids. It allowed Rory, at 20, to have a six-bedroom house on 14 acres with a driving range and practice green.

          He is likely to win today. If he doesn't, it will be quite a story, but our money is on his chances of winning a major eventually and probabaly soon. Whenever it happens, he will have his folks to thank.



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