Golf just isn’t the same without Tiger — no, we don’t know why.

My interest in golf has a lot to do with Tiger Woods. I know I'm not alone, based on golf's struggles in recent years. He burst onto the scene and I got into it. When he was dominating the PGA Tour, I played a lot, but then my interest waned when he stopped winning majors. I don't know how that works. I thought I was going to be Tiger Woods. Even for one shot, he would never be able to do anything like what he could do. I haven't played a round in three years. I'm one of the many who leave the game or never get to it.

It's not like Tiger made golf more accessible, though I suppose he made it feel more accessible to people who didn't think it was before. Tiger is decidedly uncool. I'm not sure if he's ever had anything interesting to say. I missed it if he did. He was programmed to be the brand spokesman since he could walk, and he rarely showed any emotion other than after a big putt.

The only time he seemed real was when he won the British Open after his father died. After his last Masters, he seemed genuinely surprised, appreciative, and reveling in the moment. It was the first time we had ever seen Tiger do something that was not expected. He was photographed drunk off his ass with Lindsey Vonn. Been there for a long time.

It's not enough for the 20 years of being robot-adjacent. He had bad allergies. He swore a bit too much, but what golfer doesn't? He hung out with famous people.

The story of his downfall isn't that interesting. He was the only professional golfer to get caught doing what hundreds of other professional athletes have done for decades, and it all started from that. Some people get caught being chased by their wife with a golf club. It's how you script it out in a sitcom or a Bugs Bunny episode.

It was not original or unique. We had seen it before. He won the Masters for the fifth time, but it wasn't really a redemption or great overcoming of obstacles. It isn't like a bad medical diagnosis or being attacked by killer bees to treat it that way. We were all excited that Tiger was going to win the Masters again.

There are some unanswered questions after a one-car accident. Even if he finished up the track, being able to play a major from the cold on a once-shattered leg is impressive. It's not like we've just gotten fascinated with Tiger. We were.

Apparently, still very much are. There is only one reason why Thursday coverage was up 31 percent from the previous year. I heard he was playing well on Thursday, but I didn't tune in. When I saw the wheels had come off, I didn't bother.

Tiger definitely broke new ground, whether that was his aim or not. We went to see things we hadn't seen before. The way Tiger won most of his majors wasn't that exciting. He was efficient in pars where others bogeyed. He chose not to surge. He only charged from off the lead once. Tiger never did and golf is usually about who cracks and who doesn't. Not on the course.

We were still thinking about the chase of 18. Maybe more people, including myself, wanted to play golf just to appreciate how hard it was. We saw him off the course and it made him more human. A rich famous guy seeing all the places he can plow isn't new. He is the only one who stands out, unless you are a raging dickhead like Bryson DeChambeau or say something. Those are only for an instant. We are tuning in now. The hardcore fans feel different from every other golfer. Maybe Tiger doesn't because we know more about him.

I'll watch the next major he plays in. I don't really know why.