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Rory McIlroy Credits Girlfriend Holly Sweeney for Helping to Keep him Grounded

Rory McIlroy is quickly becoming an international superstar. The 22-year-old golfer from Northern Ireland recently won his first major, lapping the field in a record-setting performance at the U.S. Open. He’s been on the verge of breaking out for over a year given his solid start at the Master’s, Open Championship, and his dominance at Quail Hollow. He’s favored to win this year’s Open Championship, and if he can win one before 2014, he will net his father a few hundred thousand dollars. But the best part about Rory, aside from his impressive ability, is his maturity and all-around likable personality.

After blowing the Master’s on Sunday, he handled his interview with class and said he’d have plenty of future opportunities to win. He took a picture with Charl Schwartzel and congratulated him. Then shortly thereafter, he was pounding Jagermeister straight from the bottle. The guy has fun, practices hard, and he’s an incredible sportsman.

While some 22 year olds would feel empowered by their international stardom, McIlroy has not changed much from the friendly kid he’s always been. He credits his girlfriend, Holly Sweeney, for helping keep him grounded.

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Rory McIlroy’s Dad Can Make Over $300,000 if Rory Wins British Open by 2014

Rory McIlroy gave his father, Gerry McIlroy, possibly the best Father’s Day gift: his first major win on Sunday. Now he has the chance to give his father possibly an even better present. Gerry McIlroy stands to pocket 200,000 pounds if Rory wins the British Open by 2014. Follow me on the this one.

When Rory was 15 years old, his father combined with three friends to bet 400 pounds (100 each) that Rory would win the Claret Jug by the age of 25. They received 500:1 odds, so the payoff is 200,000 pounds.

McIlroy is 22 years old and coming off a record-setting performance at the U.S. Open. Before that, he led the Master’s by four strokes entering the final round of play until he blew the tournament. He also was the leader after the first round of the British last year. McIlroy is proving he’s the top golfer in the world, so you have to like their chances of cashing.

We’ve seen someone hit on an even more improbable bet, but this would have to be infinitely more satisfying if it does come true. If you think about it, what’s 100 pounds when your son is that good? Cashing that ticket will be sweet.

Daily Herald Incorrectly Calls Rory McIlroy ‘John McIlroy’ in Headline

Newspapers making mistakes is nothing new — we just had one The Miami Herald made last week. But there’s a big difference between running the wrong ad in a newspaper and just completely flubbing someone’s name. Sports Grid points out that The Daily Herald somehow called Rory McIlroy “John McIlroy” in their newspaper Monday:

Usually when we write about newspapers making mistakes with their headlines it’s for funny reasons. Someone please explain to me how they got “John McIlroy” because I really can’t figure it out.

Thanks to Ellie P for the picture

Rory McIlroy Drinks Out of the U.S. Open Trophy in Celebration (Picture)

Rory McIlroy doesn’t shy away from partying. We know, we’ve shared the pictures in the past. After seeing him pound Jagermeister, it was no surprise to see McIlroy celebrate his record-setting U.S. Open win by drinking out of the trophy:

McIlroy shared that picture on his twitter account after winning his first major Sunday. Judging by girlfriend Holly Sweeney’s twitter account, we can guess it was filled with champagne, Jager, or … celebratory water? With the way he’s been playing, he should be able to celebrate.

Yes, That Was Shane McMahon Celebrating with Rory McIlroy at the U.S. Open

Shane McMahon caused a buzz on the internet Sunday when NBC showed him standing alongside Rory McIlroy’s father at the U.S. Open:

In case you’re wondering why McMahon would be standing with Gerry McIlroy and supporting Rory, it’s because he’s on the Board of Directors for International Sports Management, which represents Rory. McMahon was also in attendance at the Master’s in Augusta, giving McIlroy a handshake following his brutal final round. I don’t know about you, but I would have preferred to see Rory McIlroy’s girlfriend in his corner at Congressional rather than McMahon, no offense.

Video via Inside Pulse Wrestling

Rory McIlroy’s Dad Gerry at U.S. Open on Father’s Day, Holly Sweeney Missing

Rory McIlroy completed a historic run at the U.S. Open Sunday, shooting a final round 69 to become the youngest U.S. Open winner in 88 years. The 22-year-old from Northern Ireland shot a 268 over the four rounds, beating the previous tournament total of 272. He joined the group of Curtis Strange, Lee Janzen, Tony Jacklin, and Lee Trevino as the only golfers to be under par all four rounds of the U.S. Open. McIlroy also became just the sixth golfer to win the tournament as the wire-to-wire champion (Tiger Woods accomplished the feat twice).

McIlroy’s win was special for several reasons besides the record-breaking fashion of the victory. In addition to Sunday becoming McIlroy’s first major win, he bounced back from his final-round collapse at the Masters in April. Moreover, he held on for his first major win on Father’s Day with his dad, Jerry McIlroy (pictured) in attendance. Sadly, Rory McIlroy’s girlfriend Holly Sweeney was not in attendance.

Sweeney is Rory’s childhood girlfriend and the two have had an on-and-off relationship, but they’re back on again. McIlroy’s people actually flew Holly into Augusta (see pictures of her here) anticipating a win at the Masters, but Rory ended up blowing his lead. Holly stayed at home for the U.S. Open but nervously watched Rory throughout the weekend. She capped his victory with a congratulatory tweet, saying “My fabulous boyfriend has played flawlessly all week! Drink up northern ireland he’s done us proud! Here’s to the sick days tomorrow WOOOOO.”

Her tweet was similar to the final words McIlroy said during an interview on NBC where he said he hoped the pints of Guinness would be flowing back home and that he couldn’t wait to get home and party with his friends. After his performance this weekend, he deserves too.

Jack Nicklaus Likes Rory McIlroy’s Game, Confidence on the Course

Jack Nicklaus has won 18 majors, more than any other golfer. He doesn’t watch too much golf, but he has begun following the career of youngster Rory McIlory. Calling into NBC during their telecast of the U.S. Open, he talked about the 22-year-old Northern Irishman and raved about his game and personality.

“His rhythm is beautiful, it just stays the same all the time,” Nicklaus said about McIlroy during a phone interview Sunday. “He has a great short game. I love his little moxie and the sort of way he walks, sort of like he’s a like a little cocksure about himself. I kind of like that in a guy. You gotta have confidence in yourself and what you’re doing.”

Nicklaus, who said McIlroy asked him for advice about how to close tournaments, continued to speak positively about the youngster. “I think this kid’s going to have a great career. He’s got all the components. He’s a nice kid, he’s got a pleasant personality. He’s humble when he needs to be humble and he’s confident when he needs to be confident.”

A year ago we said McIlroy was the real deal after watching him dominate at Quail Hollow and put together a sparkling opening round at the British Open as a 20-year-old. We appreciated the character he showed after losing his lead at the Masters. We also love the fun side of his life he displays, not to mention his longtime girlfriend/female friend, Holly Sweeney. At this point we’re in agreement with Nicklaus in enjoying McIlroy as a golfer. As long as he doesn’t turn out to be like Tiger Woods, there won’t be any reason to dislike him.