the article quoted Jerry Kelly, so they weren't just making it up (like reporters often do). Below is the start of the article. I'd post the link, but you have to be a subscriber to see the whole thing.
NORTON — Golf on the PGA Tour is a game of power, precision, coordination, innovation, strength, skill, and occasionally stamina, among many other things.
It is not a contact sport, however, between its players. At least most of the time.
Jerry Kelly has a story, though. As a PGA Tour rookie, he lowered his shoulder and let playing partner Mac O’Grady have it while on the green. The problem? A few of golf’s unwritten rules.
Let Kelly explain.
“I’m a rookie, playing in Milwaukee with Jim Thorpe and Mac O’Grady. Those guys are on the green, about 30 feet away on opposite sides, and I’m about 40 feet away. I knock my putt up there and tap it in. As I reach and get my ball out of the hole I step over the hole, instead of walking around. Mac makes a beeline to me, comes right up to my shoulder and says, ‘Don’t ever walk over that hole, don’t ever do that,’ ” Kelly said. “I’m a little bit of an aggressive guy, and I take a little bit of offense to that. About three holes later, I’m looking at my putt from behind the hole, Mac’s on the other side, and I see that he’s going to walk over my line.
“Well, if I can’t walk over the hole, he can’t walk over my line. So I start walking toward him, he’s coming toward me, and I absolutely hammer him in the shoulder, then keep walking. I got him pretty good. Thorpy was laughing his [butt] off. I loved Mac’s eccentricities, he’s a good guy. I knew that you never step over somebody’s line, but I learned that day that you’re not supposed to step over the hole.”