Tiger Woods is one of ESPN's nominees for Male Athlete of the Year at the ESPYS. Is there any other choice? No. And yes, apparently. The nomination has some other professional athletes and ESPN personalities questioning whether golfers are really athletes.
For full disclosure, I am a golf fan and love to play and practice the game as often I can. That said, I don't necessarily think you have to be an athletically gifted person to be a good golfer. You can overcome physical limitations with years of arduous practice. But I also know a lot of very gifted athletes who fail miserably at golf.
If you know anything about the game and how hard it is to master and you watch Tiger religiously you know he is a gifted athlete. My bet is that Tiger would have excelled at a number of other sports had he not zeroed in on golf. And since golf is a mainstream sport in this country, the PGA stars have to be included in any discussion about athletes.
Moreover, Tiger is the most dominant player in his sport. There is no other athlete on the planet as dominant in his/her respective sport. That can't be debated by anyone with an I.Q. of 10 or better. And what Tiger did for five days at the U.S. Open on one leg is nothing short of amazing. What he's been able to do the past 12 months on a torn knee ligament secures his place at the top of ESPN's list. Of course it's Tiger. End of discussion.