Today Tiger Woods exposed himself in an extraordinary way, taking on the national media to talk about his personal life before competing in the Masters tournament. The first thing that most of us noticed (I was speaking with Rev. Al Sharpton at the time) is that he was incredibly honest, more so than he's been in months. Rarely has the world had a chance to hear Tiger Woods discuss his personal life in such a public forum.
Tiger began the press conference by noting that the support he has received from the public has been extraordinary. In Woods' words, "The encouragement that I got blew me away." He said that he didn't know what to expect on the first tee and that the fans at Augusta National (where the Masters is being held) have been kind toward him.
Woods mentioned that he had to take a "hard look" at himself, which gave him strength and peace. He also mentioned the discomfort he experienced when watching his family get stalked by the media. He seemed to feel that his behavior was not reflective of where he comes from, and he noted "how far away I got from the core morals that my mom and dad taught me."
Woods also mentioned that he wants to become "more respectful to the game" by reducing his negative and positive outbursts when he plays. He was also forced to deal with accusations of illegal drug use after being linked to a doctor who was accused of disseminating illegal drugs. Woods responded to the accusation by simply stating, "I've never taken any illegal drugs."
I was personally shocked and impressed by the candor Woods showed during the press conference. He even discussed his use of prescription drugs Ambien and Vicodin. He told the reporter that he used Vicodin to deal with knee pain, and Ambien to help him sleep when his father died. He even mentioned the difficulty of one day having to explain his cheating scandal to his children. The only time Tiger held off the reporters is when one of them asked why he was in rehab. But even then, Tiger simply smiled and said, "That's personal, thank you."
Tiger is well on his way. Falling down is never a problem if you plan to get back up. Woods is going to play well at the Masters and he might even win. At worst, Tiger is going to win at least one major championship this year, which is a lifetime achievement for most golfers. Tiger Woods is back, so we can just sit back and watch the show.
Dr. Boyce Watkins is the founder of the Your Black World Coalition and the author of the new book, 'Black American Money.'To have Dr. Boyce commentary delivered to your e-mail, please click here.