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PGA Tour Players Anonymous Poll

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

Golf.com does these occasionally. This is their most recent one:

 

http://www.golf.com/photos/pga-tour-players-anonymous-poll/tiger-woods-and-phil-mickelson#341423

 

The number that struck me the most was 38% of them claim to have seen another Tour Pro cheat. One of the comments was: "Yes, and it was knowingly. Everybody knows who he is, and everybody knows he does it."

post #2 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonBrew View Post

Golf.com does these occasionally. This is their most recent one:

 

http://www.golf.com/photos/pga-tour-players-anonymous-poll/tiger-woods-and-phil-mickelson#341423

 

The number that struck me the most was 38% of them claim to have seen another Tour Pro cheat. One of the comments was: "Yes, and it was knowingly. Everybody knows who he is, and everybody knows he does it."

 

Makes you wonder who it is, doesn't it?

post #3 of 27

You know from somebody that watches the PGA tour week in and week out I dont really agree with that poll.How can someone cheat with all the cameras everywhere?Plus you risk getting a bad reputation and possible ejection from the PGA tour.From what I seen all these tour guys seem to be honest.Ive never seen anybody cheating(I seen bill hass mark his ball on the fringe and was like "thats a penalty stroke" but forgot they are playing lift and place)When they do make a mistake they are always caught anyway and added punishment(see tiger woods augusta this yr with turning in a wrong scorecard).

 

Sounds more like we have some sore losers on the PGA tour(see sergio garcia)

post #4 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post

You know from somebody that watches the PGA tour week in and week out I dont really agree with that poll

How can you "not agree with" this anonymous poll?

I would guess that there are a couple of players whose marking of the ball is dodgy, but the players know they risk a huge firestorm if they call the guy. Probably similar to the Elliot Saltman case.

 

http://www.pga.com/elliot-saltman-banned-european-tour-incorrect-marking-ball-green

 

I have played with guys who flick their marker under their ball and then place it an inch beyond the marker. When I have called them out on this it becomes very uncomfortable for the rest of the round. Others mark it at 5 or 7 o'clock rather than six o'clock and then replace it at 6 o'clock. 

 

My guess is that these players exist on tour.

post #5 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shorty View Post

How can you "not agree with" this anonymous poll?

 

Did you not finish reading my above post?I clearly explain why I dont agree with it

 

Let me try again

 

Lets say there is a tour player that is doing the marking of the ball like you explain.I would think some of these tour players would be contacting the rule officials after the tourney about this guy(behind closed doors?).They do play for alot of $$$ you know..If its so obvious I am sure these offcials will be getting the same negative feedback on this cheater from others whos witnessed it too.I just dont see how a guy doing what you explain could be getting away with it very long on the tour where there is so many eyes watching.


Edited by Blitz28179 - 7/7/13 at 12:41am
post #6 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post

You know from somebody that watches the PGA tour week in and week out I dont really agree with that poll.How can someone cheat with all the cameras everywhere?Plus you risk getting a bad reputation and possible ejection from the PGA tour.From what I seen all these tour guys seem to be honest.Ive never seen anybody cheating(I seen bill hass mark his ball on the fringe and was like "thats a penalty stroke" but forgot they are playing lift and place)When they do make a mistake they are always caught anyway and added punishment(see tiger woods augusta this yr with turning in a wrong scorecard).

Sounds more like we have some sore losers on the PGA tour(see sergio garcia)

How would we know otherwise?
post #7 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post

You know from somebody that watches the PGA tour week in and week out I dont really agree with that poll.How can someone cheat with all the cameras everywhere?Plus you risk getting a bad reputation and possible ejection from the PGA tour.From what I seen all these tour guys seem to be honest.Ive never seen anybody cheating(I seen bill hass mark his ball on the fringe and was like "thats a penalty stroke" but forgot they are playing lift and place)When they do make a mistake they are always caught anyway and added punishment(see tiger woods augusta this yr with turning in a wrong scorecard).

 

Sounds more like we have some sore losers on the PGA tour(see sergio garcia)

There are lots of golfers every week that they don't show on TV. I've never seen them play, forget about seeing them cheat. I can imagine that replacing a marked ball in a slightly different position would be hard to detect on camera, anyway. Also, people who commit crimes (or cheat) don't think they'll get caught, so the consequences aren't even on their minds.

 

There are athletes at the highest levels of other sports that cheat. If you think professional golfers are some kind of higher class of human beings, I have a bridge to sell you.

post #8 of 27

I agree with Shorty and Bill...there are lots of little ways to cheat in golf.  

 

While the majority of PGA Tour players likely play by the rules most of the time, when money is involved, a significant number of humans will cheat if they think they can get away with it.  When I played JR golf tournaments, you would occasionally see a group of hacks all turn in low scores, yet none of these guys would ever go low when paired with legit players.  

 

Marking closer to the hole makes no sense to me- too high a potential cost for very little reward, BUT, when the greens aren't perfect moving the ball fractionally to avoid a spike mark or imperfect lie might tempt some guys, especially when the cameras aren't around.

 

Players can also get a bit liberal on things like spike mark vs ball mark, relief from sprinkler heads/cart paths, entry points into hazards, not trying to drop exactly where they played from, etc.  The smarter players who are trying to stretch things might even plead their case with a rules official to make sure they are covered.

 

If a ball moves slightly while a player is addressing it in the rough, I gotta think there are at least one or two guys out there that would not call it on themselves when nobody else saw it.  Similar with a single leaf falling when a guy takes a practice swing.

 

It might not be cheating, but it seems like increasingly over the years I have noticed players taking advantage of dropping twice and then placing the ball.  I have had to invoke this rule occasionally when there is a steep slope, but find it interesting how often Tour players utilize this on relatively flat ground.  

post #9 of 27
For years it's been known that Vijay Singh has marked his ball while on the green in a questionable way. Then there's the deer antler spray scandal and oh yeah his 1985 suspension from Asian Tour.
post #10 of 27

I'd believe there are a few guys that stretch the rules in their favor, sounds like everyone knows about them, but they must not be good enough to whistle blow on.  Once one of these guys is in contention for a tournament and steals a victory it will all come out. 

post #11 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post

You know from somebody that watches the PGA tour week in and week out I dont really agree with that poll.How can someone cheat with all the cameras everywhere?Plus you risk getting a bad reputation and possible ejection from the PGA tour.From what I seen all these tour guys seem to be honest.Ive never seen anybody cheating(I seen bill hass mark his ball on the fringe and was like "thats a penalty stroke" but forgot they are playing lift and place)When they do make a mistake they are always caught anyway and added punishment(see tiger woods augusta this yr with turning in a wrong scorecard).

 

Sounds more like we have some sore losers on the PGA tour(see sergio garcia)

 

Most guys are never shown on a broadcast and have relatively few spectators following them.  I don't think it would be that difficult for a relatively obscure player to cheat where only his fellow competitors would be aware of it.  Using Tiger as an example of how mistakes are always caught is quite unrealistic since almost every shot of his is broadcast while it is quite the rev ers for almost all of the other players.

 

Just to pick a name out of the hat, what percent of David Lingmerth's shots do you think are shown on TV?  Yet he is in the top 30 on the fedex point list. 

 

This is the same reason that people have a completely mistaken impression of how much Tiger swears on course relative to other players.  We see it every time HE does it but hardly ever when the other players are doing it.  because we see almost all of his shots and very few of the shots by the other players.

post #12 of 27

I have to agree about the TV coverage. I followed Paddy, Darren, and Ian Poulter around one year at the Honda. There were less than a dozen people watching that Friday.

 

If you are not in the marquee group, and not in the lead, you are not on TV. A guy battling to make his first cut is not newsworthy and is a non-story. If he is across the fairway in the rough and the action of addressing the ball makes it move slightly, if he doesn' t call it, it doesn't get called. If he moves a pine cone, straw, lightly touches the sand, etc., no one is watching. Two friends of mine said they were following a famous player around one day and they saw him in the pine straw and his ball had moved slightly. He played on and no one was the wiser. Maybe he didn't notice, but these guys were really floored. I think that the majority of guys do it right. All it takes is one clear incident and your name is mud. Vijay is still tarnished from the Asian Tour incident. 

post #13 of 27

Bob Toski got caught marking his ball to his advantage several years ago and got caught. I once played with a guy who would pick up his ball first, then throw a coin down at the spot. Would always land a couple of inches closer to the hole.

post #14 of 27
Thread Starter 

I figured it would be something like not calling the ball moving as they removed loose impediments. But it would make more sense that more people have seen someone incorrectly mark and replace their ball on the green. 

post #15 of 27

Regardless that golf is considered a "gentleman's sport" where the players are expected to call penalties on themselves, there will be a certain amount of players that cheat by not calling penalties. That percentage of players probably (I don't have any evidence) closely mirrors the general population of people who cheat when put into a situation where they have to "call a penalty" on themselves. Such as when they fill out their taxes and fudge a deduction. There are variations of behavior in all groups of people, so I can say with 100% certainty that their are PGA pro's cheating. And some are caught, whether or not it gets out in the media is a different story.

post #16 of 27
post #17 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TourSpoon View Post

Here is a caddie's version with similar results:
 

http://www.golf.com/tour-and-news/survey-finds-more-half-pga-tour-caddies-have-witnessed-cheating

I enjoyed that. Thanks.

 

The other night, over a few whiskeys, I asked a friend a hypothetical. If an up-and-coming PGA Tour Rookie asked you to caddie for him, would you? We decided you had to do it for 3 years and 15% of the Rookie's earnings each week would be the compensation rate. And I warned him that I've read multiple articles describing the not-so-glamorous lifestyle of the typical Pro caddie. We both said "yes" fairly quickly. 

post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shorty View Post

How can you "not agree with" this anonymous poll?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post

Did you not finish reading my above post?I clearly explain why I dont agree with it

 

Let me try again

 

Lets say there is a tour player that is doing the marking of the ball like you explain.I would think some of these tour players would be contacting the rule officials after the tourney about this guy(behind closed doors?).They do play for alot of $$$ you know..If its so obvious I am sure these offcials will be getting the same negative feedback on this cheater from others whos witnessed it too.I just dont see how a guy doing what you explain could be getting away with it very long on the tour where there is so many eyes watching.

Shorty's point, though, is that it is an anonymous poll.  What incentive would any tour player have to lie in an anonymous poll?  It's the whole point about it being anonymous.  If a PGA tour player is asked on the record if he's witnessed cheating, then, sure, you can take any answer with a grain of salt because they probably don't want to be involved in any controversy.

 

But there really is no reason not to take the results of an anonymous poll at face value.

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