DUBLIN, Ohio (WCMH) — The 47th Memorial Tournament ramped up Tuesday with practice rounds, and an update from tournament founder Jack Nicklaus.
Nicklaus told reporters a few weeks ago that LIV Golf, the new Saudi golf league set to debut this summer, had offered him $100 million to serve as the leader of the new group.
On top of that, Nicklaus is being sued by his own company, Nicklaus Companies, LLC, in part for discussing involvement in the Saudi-backed league. Nicklaus denied any wrong doing.
“I’ve got zero interest in wanting to do something like that. I don’t care what kind of money they would have thrown at me,” Nicklaus said during a press conference Tuesday. “My allegiance has been to the PGA Tour. I grew up on the PGA Tour. I helped found the PGA Tour as it is today. My allegiance is there and it’s going to stay there.’’
Nicklaus added he only took the meeting with LIV Golf organizers because Nicklaus Companies “had a contract on a golf course in Saudi Arabia for over a couple of years.”
“When they called Jackie, my son Jackie organized the meeting, they came into the Bear’s Club [in Florida],” he said. “We met a couple of guys. John Rees and Paul Stringer from the Nicklaus Companies were there because we were doing the golf course, and they proposed this thing to me . . . I did it out of courtesy to them because we’re doing a golf course for them.”