Michelle Wie: From Prodigy to Novelty to Joke?

It’s sad to watch the slow train wreck that Michelle Wie’s phenomenal young career seems to be turning into. She can fire all the coaches and caddies she wants to. But she can’t fire her parents.

Japan Times sportswriter Jack Gallagher says it’s Time for Wie to take a break from playing against men.

I was afraid this was going to happen.

Last week’s calamitous outing by American teenage golf prodigy Michelle Wie, at the Casio World Open in Kochi, has reignited the issue of parents pushing their children — often prematurely — into the sporting spotlight.

After carding rounds of 81 and 80 in the JPGA men’s tournament, Wie missed the cut and found herself in next-to-last place, some 27 shots behind the leader.

In the 36 holes she played, Wie did not have a single birdie, while making 15 bogeys and one double bogey.

The showing had people once again scratching their heads and wondering if she would be better off trying to rack up some victories on the LPGA Tour before taking on the men again.

Though it is admirable that the 17-year-old Wie, who nearly everyone agrees is both beautiful and powerful, keeps on trying, her recent results while playing against men show a continuing trend of diminishing returns.

But the worst signal of a train wreck ahead is the following story in The Onion.

HONOLULU—In an announcement that has rocked the world of professional golf, longtime men’s golfer Michelle Wie said Monday that she is planning to participate in the LPGA’s season-opening SBS Open next February, which would make her the first woman to enter such an event since 32 women competed in the ADT Championship last weekend. “I have accomplished everything I am capable of accomplishing on the men’s tour,” said Wie, who finished second-to-last and missed the cut by 17 strokes in the men’s Casio World Open earlier this month. “I’m looking for a real challenge—one within reasonable limits that I actually have a legitimate chance of surmounting. This will inspire girls everywhere to break society’s barriers and begin playing sports against other females.” Wie, however, said that while she had achieved a comfort zone on the men’s tour, she is worried that the women of the LPGA will regard her with coldness, anger, and resentment for trying to join their tour.

via Japundit and Foreign Dispatches

UPDATE: Michelle Wie has come a long way since I posted this. Good for her!

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