AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am: Rory McIlroy finally plays with Dad

Bill Murray pretends to kick a media member during the 3M Celebrity Challenge on Wednesday Feb. 7 2018 at the Pebble Beach Golf Links in Carmel Calif

Big Irish Contingent Line Up At Pebble Beach

He had a promising future, but so did several young power hitters back then.

Rory McIlroy finished three shots off the pace in the first round as he made his debut at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

At least he is for now, until the next intriguing 20-something - Jon Rahm?

Jordan Spieth is a well-known Dallas Cowboys fan.

He won in 2009 when the final round was wiped out by rain (he had a four-shot lead over Mike Weir).

Among those at five under was Keith Mitchell, a PGA Tour rookie who had never been to the Monterey Peninsula he came up last week to play with retired race vehicle driver Danny Sullivan.

Kim also had a promising future, but he soon flamed out and disappeared from the golf landscape.

Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander (18 under with Russell Knox), NHL legend Wayne Gretzky (17 under with Johnson, his son-in-law) and former National Football League quarterback Tony Romo (15 under with Will Zalatoris) headline the other athletes near the top of the Pro-Am leaderboard.

He has won at least once every year since 2008, including last month's eight-stroke rout at the Tournament of Champions in Maui. Not only is Schwab the owner of the investment firm that goes by his name, but he is also the benefactor of the Schwab Cup, the yearlong points race on the PGA Champions Tour.

Johnson said he prefers tough conditions on Sunday, and he might get them as the wind is supposed to pick up on Sunday afternoon to complement some nippy 55-degree temperatures. That was probably some of the best golf I've played in my career, but parts of the game are just as good. His only other experience at Pebble Beach was a missed cut in the 2010 U.S. Open.

That's dizzying stuff, especially for a player long known for his epic pratfalls on the grand stages. After losing to Gary Woodland in a playoff in Arizona on Sunday, Reavie came right back with a 5-under 67 at Pebble Beach on Thursday. After three straight seasons compromised by injury, Rory is finally healthy, and he looked quite spry while summiting Spyglass's many hills.

So now he resurfaces amid February sunshine at Pebble, in an unmistakable groove.

"Coming off a good win at Torrey Pines gives (me) a bit more patience; I don't feel I need to force anything and just let things unfold", he said. "I've got a lot of confidence in my game".

"And last year was the first year where I lowered my expectations on the greens and just accepted hitting putts at the right speed and putting them around the right line, and if they fell, they fell". That kind of feat crawls into the head of opponents.

Adam Scott, making his first competitive appearance this year, showed plenty of rust and struggled at the hard Spyglass course to a 77 and at five over is nearly at the bottom of the leaderboard. Now he's the No. 2-ranked golfer in the world, with an outside chance of supplanting Johnson at No. 1 this week.

"No, it's great for the game", he said.

The comedian is matched up with country music star Darius Rucker this year who got off to a rough start when he his ball ended up out of bounds after the first swing.

McIlroy will play five of the next six weeks on Tour, including next week's Genesis Open, Honda Classic, Valspar Championship, Arnold Palmer Invitational and WGC-Dell Match Play.

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