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Seriously...Could you have made it to the tour?

post #1 of 62
Thread Starter 

I see so many threads, books, internet warriors, all claiming that they're going to dedicate themselves, work night and day, pound enough balls to make Vijay look like a weekend chopper...  They're going to do whatever it takes and in their mind, it's a foregone conclusion that one day, they'll have that tour card.

 

I wonder, deep down in your heart, given ideal circumstances and the right opportunities, could you have made it to the tour?  If you had started young, played in high school, got on at say, Wake Forest or University of Houston, had all the coaching and facilities available, was there any chance that you had what it took to get to that level?

 

I look at my own athletic abilities, temperament, body type etc.  I have to conclude that no, I really didn't have the dedication and attitude to make it.  Athletically, maybe.  I played baseball and was a gymnast in high school and actually tried to walk on at BYU (but quickly went to 6'1" and 220, so I outgrew that sport). 

 

I look at the shots these guys are hitting, chips and pitches that they're making, the putts that they're sinking, and I think, damn, how are they able to do that hole after hole?  There's no way I could do that, no matter how much practice and instruction I got.  That's my realistic assessment.

 

Some of you low cappers and scratch guys, if you didn't get derailed by life, work, family, what do you think?

post #2 of 62

I am going to say big IF's here

 

I think i could have developed the skill set for golf. The key was the power increase from my first year at highschool golf to my 2nd, i gained about 30 yards off the tee just from puberty. I know the distance is there for me. Ya ya, distance claim, i could care less if someone says i can't hit the ball pro distance. I've paced it, GPS'd it, if people want i could break out a fricken tape measure, i know how far i can hit my golf clubs, and they are pro distance. 

post #3 of 62
I would say no. I am going to retire in my mid 40's though. My plan is to go all in and try to make the champions tour or at least try to qualify for some events.
post #4 of 62

If I had started playing golf at least five years earlier AND gotten the instruction I give or better the whole time AND lived in a state without winter (or had an awesome indoor facility), I'd have had about a 1% chance, I figure.

 

And it's not for lack of speed or driving distance or anything, just an appreciation for how difficult it is. If you knew how difficult I truly felt it was, you'd realize how much I think of myself when I say 1%. That's a HUGE number.

post #5 of 62

you need to be way  way better than scratch to play on tour

 

allthough  , it didnt stop our own Ian Poulter from turning pro when he was off 4 and look at him now

post #6 of 62
Not even remotely. Baseball on the other hand .....
post #7 of 62
Yes. I do think I could have made it. By my late teens early 20's I was a weekend guy shooting mid 70's with very little problem on most courses. BUT, I had a really good job and enjoyed doing it. About the age of 25, I was approached by a "syndicate" consisting of a friend of mine and two others from South Carolina offering me the possibility of attempting a go. They would offer me a place to stay in Hilton Head (friends basement apartment), some coaching with seed money to enter local tournaments, travel and upgrade equipment. I would get 2 shots at q-school as well (if I didn't do it through some other method like Monday Qualifiers, etc). I would have to work for some spending money, likely on area courses doing various duties related to grounds keeping, etc... They would get the majority of any prize money, with some spending money for me. Any sponsor monies (if any) would also go towards the syndicate to cover their expenses. After 2 years the deal could be re-worked- I could buy out what I owed and be my own entity, or continue with different terms a bit more in my favor, but still with some backing on their part to further the career. If after those 2 years there was no profits, the deal was off and I was back on my own but I owed nothing.

Believe me, I seriously considered it for several weeks. But as I mentioned, I was happy at my job (still there, btw) and didn't want to jeopardize that. Also, I realized I didn't have "it". I didn't want to make golf "my job", and turn a game I enjoyed playing into a game I HAD to play. I sometimes wonder about what "might have been", but I don't dwell on it or think of it as a lost opportunity. I still like my job, and like just going out and playing for fun with my friends. I joined a group that put together a couple of tournaments a month with small pots and was handicap based, but I didn't enjoy losing to guys that were obviously better than their 10-11 indexes while I was struggling to come in 4th or 5th with a 3/4, or even getting into the money at all. IF there had been a lottery win in my mid-40's, I would have at least TRIED the Sr. tour at 50- but that didn't exactly come to plan, either.

They eventually found someone to be their guy.. and he turned out to be none other than:






I have no idea- not even sure he made it. I lost touch with that friend shortly afterwards.
post #8 of 62

No z1_censored.gif way!

post #9 of 62
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

If I had started playing golf at least five years earlier AND gotten the instruction I give or better the whole time AND lived in a state without winter (or had an awesome indoor facility), I'd have had about a 1% chance, I figure.

 

And it's not for lack of speed or driving distance or anything, just an appreciation for how difficult it is. If you knew how difficult I truly felt it was, you'd realize how much I think of myself when I say 1%. That's a HUGE number.

 

See this something that I think the "I"m going to play on the tour" thread guys don't realize.  As someone who is actually making a living at golf, for you to say that with proper instruction, time and effort you're still only giving yourself a 1% chance...

 

It's a hard game.  And cruel.  And only a handful of guys (and gals) are really able to play at a level where they are competitive.  They make it look easy on TV.

post #10 of 62

No way.

 

I don't have the mindset -- it's a rare combo of talent, gambler, and ability to pull it off consistently.

post #11 of 62

Your post makes no sense in a lot of ways.

 

"Could you have made it to the tour without the right dedication, coaches and mindset?"  Well, no.  Of course not.

 

Now, had I determined at a young age that I was going to make it on tour and nothing would ever stand in my way, had I put in tens of thousands of hours of practice and had I had the right coaches (both swing and mental) could I have made it?  We'll never know.  Someone can look at me today and say "You're not enough of an athlete - you never would have made it."  But had that been my mindset when I was young, I likely would have been a lot more of an athlete than I am today.  

 

Personally, I don't believe that pro golfers are exclusively born.  I believe some are - having a natural gift of tempo and timing, but I believe others make it on sheer determination, hard work and the right coaching.

 

Let's put it this way.  Had Earl not done what he did and Tiger spent his youth playing video games and trombone in the marching band, would he look like the world's greatest golfer today?  Probably not.  He'd probably be someone we'd look at and say, yeah, he's a decent golfer, but no way he'd ever have made it on tour.

post #12 of 62

Nope, no way, just as I realized playing in my first college football game I wasn't going to be a pro football player either. 

 

You can't even begin to understand the talent, skill, dedication and luck it takes to play a sport professionally unless you are dominating at the levels below it.  I was a good / great linebacker in H.S. which translated to average / mediocre in division II college football.   These guys that come here and post their intentions of playing on the PGA Tour and haven't even played in a tournament on the web.com tour or even a regional non-pro tournament are delusional. 

 

Having a scratch handicap or even low + doesn't mean you will play on the PGA Tour.  If a guy like Erik says if everything went perfect for him he'd have a 1% chance then really what are the chances of a guy that's playing -3 at his local course or in H.S.  It's fun to dream, but too many people under estimate what it really takes to become a pro athlete at the highest levels. 

post #13 of 62
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wadesworld View Post

Your post makes no sense in a lot of ways.

 

"Could you have made it to the tour without the right dedication, coaches and mindset?"  Well, no.  Of course not.

 

Now, had I determined at a young age that I was going to make it on tour and nothing would ever stand in my way, had I put in tens of thousands of hours of practice and had I had the right coaches (both swing and mental) could I have made it?  We'll never know.  Someone can look at me today and say "You're not enough of an athlete - you never would have made it."  But had that been my mindset when I was young, I likely would have been a lot more of an athlete than I am today.  

 

Personally, I don't believe that pro golfers are exclusively born.  I believe some are - having a natural gift of tempo and timing, but I believe others make it on sheer determination, hard work and the right coaching.

 

Let's put it this way.  Had Earl not done what he did and Tiger spent his youth playing video games and trombone in the marching band, would he look like the world's greatest golfer today?  Probably not.  He'd probably be someone we'd look at and say, yeah, he's a decent golfer, but no way he'd ever have made it on tour.

 

I'm not asking the general question.  That's been analyzed and discussed very thouroughly on the Dan thread and elsewhere.  I was more interested, specifically for a person to assess their own individual ability, aptitude, potential, given an optimum set of cirucumstances, could they make it.

post #14 of 62

I got my handicap down to 2 at 58 years old, and that is the lowest it has ever been. I have played with plus handicappers and mini tour players, and their  approach was way different than mine. I would hit a good shot to the middle of the green, and I would be happy with the result. Those guys would hit to the middle, rather than the flag, and they would feel that they hit a bad shot. I also used to work at a course that hosted a lot of mini tour events, and a lot of those guys could hit it as well as guys on tour, but they didn't have the mental abilities of a tour player.

post #15 of 62
I can honestly say: most certainly not. I have plenty of ability in other areas and managed to squander many opportunities away when I was younger. It would have been the same for golf.
post #16 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by CraiginKSA View Post

 

I'm not asking the general question.  That's been analyzed and discussed very thouroughly on the Dan thread and elsewhere.  I was more interested, specifically for a person to assess their own individual ability, aptitude, potential, given an optimum set of cirucumstances, could they make it.

 

Yeah, but there's no way to know what we don't know.  I have no way of knowing how good I could have been had I had optimal circumstances and unflappable determination as a youth.  Chances are very good I would have been among the legions of wannabe's, but there's no way to know if perhaps I could have been more since I never tried.

post #17 of 62

I've played Tenpin Bowling up and to a high international level, gave it up when I was about 25 and got the bug for golf about 3 years ago. This involved a work ethic to probably match golf, with travelling to tournaments on the road and also internationally etc

 

I always say to anyone who asks how long i've played golf competitively that I'd probably be much better off if i'd started golf early on, however of course i'll never know. I reflect on my bowling career and think I probably got bored of lack of improvement and not going to the next level to be honest, would this have happened if i'd golfed? again i'll never know. 

 

Ones things for sure Golf is a hell of a lot more commercially sustainable for people to get a living from it.

post #18 of 62

Maybe.  Growing up there was no golf course nearby to play, so I didn't play a full round until high school. Could still beat most of the high school golf team. Then didn't play more than a few rounds a year until my mid 20's.  Played baseball/softball, so didn't get "serious" about golf until my 40's.  Never had a lesson until then.

 

With some early instruction, and the opportunity to play growing up, could I have been 3 or 4 strokes better than I am today? I'd like to think so. Not saying that would have been enough, though.

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