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Begay: Tiger appearance at NB3 Challenge is 50/50 right now

By GARY LIBERATORE

VERNON, N.Y. (WKTV) - As Tiger Woods fell to the ground this weekend, his good friend Notah Begay III was watching.

"My heart sunk," Begay said. "As probably a lot of people here in Central New York."

As Woods' former college roommate, Begay has been tight with him ever since.

"We've been in communication, things are still up in the air as far as that's all concerned," Begay said of Woods' scheduled appearance at the NB3 Foundation Challenge this Wednesday at Atunyote Golf Club in Vernon. "We're hoping for the best, but it's probably 50/50 right now."

Dr. Russel Williams, a chiropractor in Utica has worked on pro-golfers with back problems, mainly because his business partner, Dr. Tom LaFountain, is the head of chiropractic services for the PGA and has often worked with tiger on his back issues.

"Typically with stuff like that, you can work through it a little bit," Williams said. "I'm sure he's got the best guys with him, so he'll be getting therapy. He has a group that travels with him."

Tiger suffers has suffered from time to time with back spasms.

"The spasm itself is the muscle itself will contract to a point, where it's very difficult to move," Dr. Williams said.

It may also make it difficult for Woods to travel to upstate New York on Wednesday for the Challenge, as well as Boston on Thursday, where he is due to tee-off for Round Two of the Fed-Ex playoffs.

"The most important thing, having dealt with back problems myself and how it can affect not only your performance on the golf course, but your daily life is that he gets a full recovery," Begay said.

Even if no Tiger, this year the field has been expanded to 12 players for the NB3 Foundation Challenge, including top guns Lee Westwood, Henrik Stenson and Ricky Fowler.

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