Hello all - USGA rule 8-2a grants a player permission to place a mark or aid to indicate the line of play (e.g., placing clubs on the ground to align yourself for the shot) prior to playing the stroke. However, the item(s) being used to indicate the line of play must be removed before the stroke is actually played.
Basically, a player may place (other than on the green) golf clubs at his feet to align his stance for the stroke, so long as he removes those clubs before actually hitting the ball.
My questions are:
1. May I make a footprint on the fairway or tee box in front of my ball (2 ft or so) to help me align my shot towards the green?
2. May I drop a leaf or grass stems on the fairway or tee box in front of my ball (2 ft or so) to help me align my shot towards the green?
If you answer, could you please refer me to a rule or prior precedent. My golf buddies and I had a spirited conversation about this subject today.