One could argue that a 30 capper who insists on spending 1/2 his Saturday on a golf course rather than getting on with something more productive is the crackpot, but that's taboo.
True, I guess, but you don't account for the fact that almost all decent golfers started, at some point, as 30 cappers.
I really don't like this idea. If it is implemented, beginners won't be welcome on the "big" course. When I first started I routinely shot 110. Now I shoot between 78 and 84 usually, and hopefully in another year it'll be 73-80. Now, I spent alot of time hacking it around the course learning the game, and getting grumbles from everyone on the course about it. Where would I be now if I had spent a year playing with a 15 inch hole from the senior tees? Probably still pretty bad. I think it creates a huge disincentive for people to get better and improve their golf games and that is not healthy for the sport.
Nor do I think it would be all that popular, honestly. Those who play "real" golf now and are leaving arn't going to stay because you made the hole bigger. Thats ridiculous. Right now, *you have a way to make the course easier* - move up tee boxes. You already have it! Why add a second? And how many threads do we have complaining about people who play from the wrong tee boxes? Like two per day. Why do you think this would be any different? What would make the 30 capper any more likely to say "lets go play the course with the big holes" than he is to say "lets move up to the senior tees"? Its the same thing. You guys are just re-arranging deck chairs on the titanic.
Golf cannot expect to maintain its numbers from 98-08 unless they make professional golf, on TV, better and more accessible to the masses. Look at hole #13 (I think?) at the Waste Management. Really interesting hole. My wife, who just happened to be in the room for Levin getting caught on it, was making comments about how it was interesting - a choice of fairway, an interesting waste area, etc... She also thought the stadium hole 16 was really neat. However, when I asked why she doesn't find golf interesting, she replied that golf tournaments seem to be the same looking guy hitting balls down a tree-lined fairway to some sort of elevated green with bunkers left and right and deep rough behind on a downslope (she picked this up from the smattering of golf shes watched over my shoulder). She said all the players look the same (I mean, put photos of Ben Crane, Kyle Stanley and Levin next to each other - they are clones) That is 90% of the holes/events/players on the PGA Tour. We find it interesting, but nobody else does without Tiger. You need a dynamic, unpredictable element and golf doesn't have that. I'm going to make a bold prediction: the next PGA tour event winner will be white, thin but not skinny, between 5'8" and 6'1" tall, wearing a perfect sponsors uniform, be in the top 10 in fairways hit, and the top 10 in putts between 5 and 15 feet for the tournament. Any takers on that bet?
Right now golf has no dynamic matchups or rivalries, has no dominant player, and all the courses look the same. The sport is grown via TV, like all sports in this country. All of them. And you can trace sports popularity directly to having one of those two: a dynamic rivalry or a dominant team. Right now, TV golf stinks and that is a huge problem. Traditions, like the Masters and US Open, are all golf has right now. And while tradition is nice, it is *not* a way to attract *new* players or blood who don't know what the Masters is and don't care. Rickey Fowler looked like eh might be the guy to do something, but he doesn't seem to be able to win.
So, thats what I think. Why would people use the big holes if they don't already use the forward tee boxes?