Tiger's apology gets mixed reactions

February 19, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
When Tiger Woods made his apologies Friday, the networks and Internet outlets streamed him live around the world. Electronically, it may have been the most watched apology in human history, however he played to a very tough crowd.

In golf, they say that nobody cares about a horrible score except for the guy who shot it, but when the best golfer in the world messes up and then figuratively signs his scorecard -- he is fair game.

"I don't think he's been honest for years," said golfer Karen Saretti.

"I think it's just pure fascination. He's been silent for so long," said another golfer.

It has been three months since the strange automobile accident that hastened Tiger's fast and steep fall from grace. Psychology and addiction experts describe his appearance as part of a healing process.

"I was impressed and think it was honest because he did not in any way announce his return to golf," said psychologist Tara Fields.

Ultimately, the discussion about Tiger's statement revolves around its authenticity. What took him so long? Why didn't he take questions and why is his recovery a public matter?

"He owes us a dialogue, but not an apology. I think today, even though it was in monologue form, it was the beginning of a dialogue because it did answer some questions we had," said KNBR radio host Brian Murphy.

Murphy covered Woods on the PGA tour and just finished a book about him.

"Every great drama has three acts. We have Act I, the career, Act II, the fall, and Act III is coming up, the resurrection. It's up to him to make act three a good one," said Murphy.

But can Woods regain his lost credibility? Kit Yarrow of Golden Gate University does not think so. Not with such a difference between the way we perceived him and how he behaved.

"It was a devastating and huge manipulation. It was a grand lie. It was of such gigantic proportions, the extent of the misrepresentation of his character, it's hard to believe we could find him credible again," said Yarrow.

But incredible or fascinating, he was so especially during his apology.