One thing that hasn’t gotten enough attention in Tiger Woods’ post-Thanksgiving 2009 life is the commitment he made to his kids in the divorce agreement that granted him joint custody of Sam and Charlie Woods. He became the father anyone would want their kids to have. The father that did exactly what was asked of him, exactly what his kids needed him to do, and the father so many would-be dads aspire to be.

How do we know this? Because when your ex-wife, ex-girlfriend (Lindsey Vonn), best friend (Notah Begay), and best acquaintance on tour (Jason Day) are ALL in agreement on something involving divorce and joint custody of kids, you know the information is pretty much factual.

Ever since the first microdisectomy in 2014 and the two comebacks since Tiger has talked about how grateful he is to be able to do the things he loves to do with his kids — namely play soccer with them. He’s a bonafide soccer dad, in the same role so many of his fans are in on many weekends throughout the year.

So when you head to Dubai and a 16-hour flight so soon after two additional back procedures and have previously admitted that basically any ill-advised move, especially when not activated, can cause you major pain, you’re taking a major risk. Tiger isn’t a good sleeper. Planes aren’t great places to be for long stretches of time. You never know jet lag will impact you. This wasn’t a good plan to begin with. Stay home and hone your game on more familiar, controllable turf.

But moreover, this was a bigger risk than that, a bigger risk than something involving your golf game or making your sponsors happy. It was a risk but involving those very fatherly duties he cherishes so much.

Now let me be clear: we don’t know what damage if any the Dubai trip has caused. There have been indications by reading tea leaves that he’s had spasm issues before during this comeback, months prior to this issue. So taken as a whole it’s only speculation as to what impact this has had on Tiger’s overall medical state.

But what has been clear through multiple news conferences that the travails of late 2015-early 2016 led him to see the mortality that is not being able to be that soccer-playing father with Sam and Charlie, not able to be to be as hands-on as he’d like in their lives on a daily basis.

And while no one is doubting that he still won’t or wasn’t or couldn’t be a great dad even in massive discomfort, who wants that lifestyle? No one would.

So here we are, with Tiger Woods having withdrawn from his next two starts with recurring back spasms and staring into the unknown once again: will he yet again chance his back when it may not be ready to be chanced? Will he once again risk that unspoken promise he made to not only a judge and some attorneys but also to Sam and Charlie when he signed those divorce papers?

We can only hope — as golfers hoping to see him rise again and as everyone who wants to see him be a great dad — that all decisions are made with his family being the number one priority from here on out.

On the latest edition of Teeing It Up with Jeremy Schilling, the Senior Director of Rules for the United States Golf Association Thomas Pagel joined me to talk about the newest local rule involving balls accidentally moved on the putting green:

On the latest Teeing It Up with Jeremy Schilling podcast, out December 19, 2016, Alyssa Rose from Barstool Sports’ The Scoring Position with A&A, helps us navigate relationships during the stressful holiday season, including gift giving, vacations, New Year’s Eve and New Years Resolutions. Plus chat about the NYE Midnight Kiss and some New York Giants stuff.

Here’s the latest Teeing It Up with Jeremy Schilling podcast, this time with Golf Digest Associate Editor Stephen Hennessey as we look back on everything that happened in golf in 2016 (so much so that we accidentally left out the Olympics!):

Here’s this week’s edition of Teeing It Up with Jeremy Schilling, featuring Kyle DeManincor talking the NBA.

Luke Mauro and I preview Week 14 of the NFL season in this week’s Teeing It Up Presents: The Sunday Sprint:

Here’s the audio from my December 5, 2016 podcast with Shawn Davison about Tiger Woods’ return at the Hero World Challenge and the College Football Playoff:

For those disillusioned right now on this Election Night I’ll give you this: a couple weeks ago on a golf trip my dad and I had a spectator walk with us, a family friend who had never experienced live golf before.

About five holes into the round, we — a twosome — let the group behind join us to create a foursome (commonplace in golf). I, wearing a New York Jets ski cap, promptly noticed one of the gentleman that joined us was wearing a Pittsburgh Steelers ski cap and immediately uttered something to the tune of, jokingly “so I guess we gotta let this Steelers fan join us, huh?”

He laughed, shook my hand, and we had a grand old time.

After the round my family friend was extremely surprised that I had the guts to do that — why I would give this guy grief literally 1 second after meeting him knowing I had to spend the next 3.5 hours with him — if the gentleman found it rude, my family friend reasoned, I’d have to deal with a hater…who wants that experience?

My reasoning doesn’t matter here — I’ve learned body language over 614 rounds of golf in 19 years — but it speaks to a larger point: golf, a game of honor, dignity, kindness and etiquette, involves playing alongside people you may vehemently disagree with on a whole lot of things in life.

So whether you like what happened tonight or not, remember that you can make America great simply by being a nice person and being kind to everyone you come in contact with. If we can do it in golf every single day for four hours at a time, we can do it in life, too.

[The following is a Transamerica sponsored post.]

The Masters will be here before you know it, and that means that we start looking at the possible contenders. And in a PGA Tour season that has had winners from every corner of the golf landscape – proven winners, new talent and guys who names you’ve never heard of – one winner stands out: Zach Johnson. The 2007 Masters champion won the season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions and now looks to add a second major to his title.

Johnson, sponsored by Transamerica, will be participating in a Google Hangout on Tuesday, April 1 with Golf Channel’s Steve Sands from Sea Island, Georgia. It’s the start of a series of Hangouts Transamerica will be doing with their players, which include Tom Watson. Up to four fans will have a chance to participate in the chat, as Zach will be answering questions about how he’s preparing to tackle Augusta National in just under two weeks.

In addition, there’s a good chance Zach will work in his work with Transamerica in addition to his charitable endeavors with the Zach Johnson Foundation, which helps the lives of children and their families in his beloved area of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Zach and Transamerica both have something in common: focusing on the future. For Zach, it’ll be about his prep to repeat that amazing moment he had in 2007. He comes in hot, with four top-10s and six top-25s in 10 starts so far in the wrap-around PGA Tour season. Transamerica, meanwhile, focuses on helping its customers plan for the future, transform tomorrow, and engage in strong teamwork. That mission is partly why the partnership of Zach and Transamerica has been so successful since they first got together in 2004.

This was my remembrance for my grandfather, Warner Schilling, given at his Columbia University Memorial Service on December 13, 2013:

I’m Jeremy Schilling, Warner’s grandson. My task here today was supposed to be to give all of you a look at the personal life of my grandfather. However as I sat down to write this, I realized that one theme kept showing up over and over again: Even away from the classroom, Warner was always a teacher always wanting to learn.

You see, being the grandson to Warner Schilling is an interesting thing. I am the second generation descendant of a brilliant mind, and before I was even born – in ‘88 – he arguably accomplished more than I ever will in my entire life.

So you can either be intimidated and overwhelmed by the prospect of being in his presence or you can just enjoy the ride. And while I had some bumps early on as I figured out firsthand that I needed to have my facts right or else, I tried to enjoy the ride as much as I could. And it was an awesome one.

You never quite knew what was going to happen next. Whether it be calling out two students who were barely whispering in class, his mandatory decree that we visit some military-related place on vacation, griping about how the potatoes were cooked on Christmas, or insisting he still use the WordPerfect version meant for DOS and Windows 3.1.

But there are three distinct memories that give insight into how my grandfather kept on teaching and learning, no matter the locale.

I think it’s pretty safe to say that in most houses, Christmas presents are either wrapped with no tag, a tag that says “from Santa,” or a tag from the giver. But no, not the Schillings. Instead, our gifts came from “Elves,” and our task was to decipher the clue and figure out what the gift was. THEN you could open it.

This would take FOREVER, with the guessing game sometimes hitting immediate success or interminable dead ends. These were intellectually based gifts, so the guessing game would make you go crazy, but I came to enjoy it. It was part of the fun of Christmas with my grandfather. As I’ve told any friend who was jealous of me getting twice the holiday presents by celebrating Hanukkah and Christmas, “No, you don’t get it. Things are just different on this side of the family.” You were bound to learn something, and that was exactly the plan.

Warner not only used this opportunity to teach, but also as a learning experience for himself from the gifts he received. He would literally jump from his seat when he finally guessed the gift correctly or succumbed to a dead end and just opened the damn thing…25 minutes later.

Then there’s my college radio show. The debut show in September 2007 was an absolute mess, marred by technical glitches and prank calls, among other things.

But while I returned to my room that night frustrated and aggravated, Warner saw a teachable moment. I opened my email the following evening to find a 13(!) paragraph email containing feedback and advice on how to improve the show. It was all under the subject line of “Baptism of Fire.”

The email ends in classic Warner fashion, with him saying, “So, congratulations again. You have made it through your baptism of fire! Forward! And I look forward to next Sunday night! Love, PW.”

Last winter, when he was in the hospital and his health was touch and go for a while, I went to visit him to try to brighten his day. My expectations for the visit were low so when he asked for a favor, what he requested caught me way off guard.

I assumed he would ask me to get a nurse, take down a note or fetch something from a neighboring table. But instead, he requested information on North Korea’s ability to launch a nuclear warhead and an update on possible peace talks between the Turks and the Kurds.

It was proof that even in the darkest of moments his brain kept churning. I shouldn’t have expected anything less.

He proudly attended my high school band concerts at Carnegie Hall and Avery Fisher Hall, went to my college graduation, and supported me in every endeavor I took on.

But most of all he was a teacher – always and forever – and in his own distinctive style. Knowing what was going on in the world was his oxygen; he read three newspapers every single day. When I think back on Papa Warner, I will always remember that being up to date on current affairs – both domestic and foreign – was not an option. It was a requirement. And for this I am eternally grateful.