With his career at a standstill and his golf game a shadow of its former mediocrity, TV writer and ESPN.com contributor Bob Smiley decided the time had come to turn to the one person who might be able to help: Tiger Woods. So, in January of 2008, Smiley set out to follow the game's greatest player from the gallery for every hole of an entire season and to absorb all that he could.
Smiley traveled from the seaside cliffs of San Diego to the deserts of Dubai, through the hallowed gates of Augusta National, and on to arguably the greatest U.S. Open of all time back at Torrey Pines, where, in a legendary duel with charismatic journeyman Rocco Mediate, Woods won his fourteenth major—on one leg.
Smiley chronicles every dramatic and often hysterical moment of his journey with Tiger, including his off-course run-ins with Arabian sandstorms, ex-con ticket scalpers, and the motley assortment of strangers who became friends along the way.
Told from the perspective of a true golf fan, Follow the Roar is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure through the most spectacular and inspiring season in Tiger Woods's celebrated career. In addition to the thrill of witnessing all 604 holes Woods played in '08, Smiley found in Tiger both inspiration and the gutsy embodiment of what it really means to be an athlete--and a man.
Amazon Exclusive: A Letter from Bob Smiley
At the risk of receiving hate mail from every PGA Tour sponsor, I need to be honest with you: attending a professional golf tournament is pretty risky. After all, it is the only sport where you can buy a ticket, walk through the gates and, in all likelihood, miss every noteworthy moment. While you're proudly perched above the 18th green, the most electrifying shots of the week are just as likely to be taking place on any one of 17 other holes. But as I learned in 2008, there is one way to hedge your bets: follow Tiger Woods.
Of course even this isn't so easy. You'll find yourself walking for miles and miles under oppressive heat, pressing up against strangers whom you might not want to press up against, and losing your voice for weeks at a time. Now that I think about it, you're really better off just buying my book instead of attempting any of this madness yourself.
Follow the Roar is the definitive account of Tiger's dominating 2008 season. From the are-you-kidding-me highlights everyone saw on TV to the off-camera moments that no other writer witnessed, the book brings the year to life and unravels the mystery of who Tiger Woods really is and how he makes the most frustrating sport in the world look terrifyingly simple.
It's the perfect way to make golf's long off-season just a little bit shorter. If you have any questions, you know where to find me. I'll be on my couch, soaking my feet.
You’re an unemployed writer with an idea: you want to follow Tiger Woods throughout his 2008 season, every hole in every tournament, from San Diego to Dubai to Augusta to wherever he chooses to play. Thanks to an understanding wife, Smiley did just that, but he had no way of knowing two things in advance: it would prove to be the shortest season in Woods’ career, thanks to a disabling knee injury, but it would also be perhaps his most memorable year ever, beginning with four consecutive victories and culminating with a herculean effort in the U.S. Open, playing in excruciating pain but still outlasting Rocco Mediate over 91 holes. And, yes, Smiley was there, somewhere in the gallery, for all 604 holes of Tiger’s year, and he has a book to prove it—a good book, too, both as a fan’s perspective on a stunning display of athletic prowess and as a sterling example of a growing sports-book subgenre: the crazy fan’s extreme travelogue. Give this both to Tiger fans and to anyone who loves demented road trips (Andre Tolme’s I Golfed across Mongolia, 2006). --Bill Ott