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Is this guy a sandbagger? - Page 2

Poll Results: Is this guy a sandbagger?

 
  • 18% (6)
    No. He plays by the Rules and posts all his scores
  • 28% (9)
    No. While his style of play may be different for tournaments, the handicap formula says he is a 10-12 index
  • 25% (8)
    No. As long as he is not varying his style of play in order to manipulate the system, he is good to go.
  • 6% (2)
    No. Some other reason (explain below)
  • 3% (1)
    Yes. The fact that his results are significantly better in tournaments is sufficient proof for me.
  • 15% (5)
    Yes. By playing differently depending on whether it is a tournament, violates one of the basic premises on which the handicap system stands
  • 0% (0)
    Yes. Some other reason (explain below)
  • 3% (1)
    Not sure. I need more information.
32 Total Votes  
post #19 of 75
Thread Starter 

Golfer Z is a real person but not me.  Of his last 20 scores, 9 were tournaments and 11 were non-tournament.  His handicap is primarily determined by his tournament play as his casual play tends to be outside his 10 best differentials.  These results are consistent going back several years.  His handicap index floats between 13 and 10.  In the north central US we tend to have our indexes increase in late Autumn (aeration, poor weather, colder temps, etc ...).  As we start in Spring, the index may increase a bit more and then start to decrease as the weather and conditions improve and we re-find our swings.  His index follows this pattern and there is no reason to think he intentionally pads it.

 

He plays against 20-25 people of similar handicap.  Each player gets his full course handicap.  Player Z is in the money (top 5) 75% of the time and every year for the past 5 years he wins the most over a 12 tournament schedule or is at least in the top 5 compared to our club's 150 members.

 

Fortunately, I am never in his flight and my interest is mainly academic.  If the handicap system works and levels the playing field, in theory one player should not consistently have a better "net" record, all other things being equal.  Of course, the handicap system can't capture that unique competitive ability some people have.  Maybe he is just one of those people for whom everything slows down during the heat of competition and he rises to the occasion.

 

It seems like the consensus is there is nothing going on other than some timely play on Player Z's part.  Thanks for the feed back.  Sorry about all the choices in the poll.  I will do better next time.

post #20 of 75

At our club, for tournaments, gents over 65 can play from either the gold or white tees.  Gold for those under 65.  The golfers over 65 all establish their handicaps from the gold tees and then play from the white tees (300 yds shorter) with a 1 stroke difference during tournaments. I wouldn't call them sandbaggers, just opportunists.

post #21 of 75

No... especially since his best 10 of the last 20 is comprised mostly of his tournament rounds.

post #22 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkuehn1952 View Post
 

Golfer Z is a real person but not me.  Of his last 20 scores, 9 were tournaments and 11 were non-tournament.  His handicap is primarily determined by his tournament play as his casual play tends to be outside his 10 best differentials.  These results are consistent going back several years.  His handicap index floats between 13 and 10.  In the north central US we tend to have our indexes increase in late Autumn (aeration, poor weather, colder temps, etc ...).  As we start in Spring, the index may increase a bit more and then start to decrease as the weather and conditions improve and we re-find our swings.  His index follows this pattern and there is no reason to think he intentionally pads it.

 

He plays against 20-25 people of similar handicap.  Each player gets his full course handicap.  Player Z is in the money (top 5) 75% of the time and every year for the past 5 years he wins the most over a 12 tournament schedule or is at least in the top 5 compared to our club's 150 members.

 

Fortunately, I am never in his flight and my interest is mainly academic.  If the handicap system works and levels the playing field, in theory one player should not consistently have a better "net" record, all other things being equal.  Of course, the handicap system can't capture that unique competitive ability some people have.  Maybe he is just one of those people for whom everything slows down during the heat of competition and he rises to the occasion.

 

It seems like the consensus is there is nothing going on other than some timely play on Player Z's part.  Thanks for the feed back.  Sorry about all the choices in the poll.  I will do better next time.

 

This is the crux of the criticism of the US Handicap system, players submit casual rounds (non-tournament) for handicap.  Depending on the ratio of casual rounds to tournament rounds it's possible for a player to have a handicap that is higher than it should be.

 

As others stated, it's not typical for a player to score lower during tournaments than casual rounds but it's possible Golfer Z approaches casual rounds as practice rounds and therefore probably shouldn't be submitting these scores to be applied towards his handicap.

post #23 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by tristanhilton85 View Post
 

No... especially since his best 10 of the last 20 is comprised mostly of his tournament rounds.

 

And as Tourspoon pointed out, there is an adjustment for exceptional tournament rounds that kicks in when tournament differential as 3 strokes better than non tournament differentials.  And it is not an optional calculation it is a "must" calculation.  If the scores are properly posted as T rounds then the handicap service should be doing this automatically, I believe.  This is in section 10-3 of the USGA handicap manual.

post #24 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkuehn1952 View Post

He plays against 20-25 people of similar handicap.  Each player gets his full course handicap.  Player Z is in the money (top 5) 75% of the time and every year for the past 5 years he wins the most over a 12 tournament schedule or is at least in the top 5 compared to our club's 150 members.

I'm curious if anyone who voted No to the poll question would change their mind given these stats?

He finishes in the top five 75% of the time in tournaments that use full handicap against similarly skilled players? Against average fields of 20 to 25 players? C'mon. This guy might argue that he plays smarter or just thrives under pressure. I would put that another way - he TRIES to play his best in tournaments. He's obviously not at the same effort level in casual rounds.

This sounds like one of those guys that would go to a national amateur event, shoot a net 4 under on day 1, follow that up with a net 5 under on day 2, and promptly be DQ'd for sandbagging.
post #25 of 75
My "no" response was based in the description of behaviors, which I did not think qualified as sandbagging. However, I also said that anyone who consistently shoots 4-5 shots better in tournaments than casual rounds should be viewed with extreme suspicion.

In other words, now that I know this is describing a real person (an not a fictitious hypothetical), I would guess there is probably more going on here than meets the eye beyond just "grinding" in tourneys. Yes, he probably is a sandbagger, albeit extremely good at hiding it during casual rounds.
post #26 of 75

yes....he's a sandbagger.  I know guys like this.  When posting scores for HC.....they try stupid shots they know will result in big numbers.  they don't read putts......they half-@ss it around the course...

 

 

he may be a 10HC....who averages 85 during normal rounds.............but he will always find a way to shoot in the 70s during a tourney.  this is the guy who has his HC adjusted by the head pro........

post #27 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by BuckeyeNut View Post
 

yes....he's a sandbagger.  I know guys like this.  When posting scores for HC.....they try stupid shots they know will result in big numbers.  they don't read putts......they half-@ss it around the course...

 

 

he may be a 10HC....who averages 85 during normal rounds.............but he will always find a way to shoot in the 70s during a tourney.  this is the guy who has his HC adjusted by the head pro........

That is not how "Player Z" was described in the OP.  You're talking about an entirely different person.  And the two points that matter still stand:

 

-  If the dude plays "an equal number of casual and tournament rounds" then those T rounds will be a large factor in determining his handicap.

 

- If the difference is more than a couple of shots, he should be adjusted.

 

OP, do you have any more info on the guys scores?  Like, do you know what the actual stroke difference is?

post #28 of 75

After reading some posts....this thread title should be changed to the "SANDBAGGER SUPPORT NETWORK"..............thread. LOL

post #29 of 75

No idea what a sandbagger is so I had to look it up.

 

Definition: "Sandbagger" is a derogatory term in golf that applies to golfers who cheat by pretending to be worse golfers than they really are. The term can be thought of two ways:

 

1. Generally, any golfer who misleads others about his ability level, claiming to be worse than he actually is at golf, might be a sandbagger. If the person is not trying to gain from that deception, no problem (he might even be aware he is misleading others about his ability - he might just have low self-esteem). But a golfer who deliberately misleads others about his ability in order to gain in some way - to win a bet, for example - is a sandbagger.

 

2. More specifically, a sandbagger is a golfer who artificially inflates his handicap index in order to better his chances of winning tournaments or bets.

A sandbagger is considered by many to be the lowest form of life on a golf course. A sandbagger can inflate his handicap index by selectively leaving out his best rounds of golf when he posts scores for handicap purposes.

 

Then, when the sandbagger enters a tournament, he claims, for example, a handicap index of 18 when, in fact, his true handicap might be closer to, as an example, 12. Voila, the sandbagger has just bought himself six extra strokes off his net score, and improved his odds of winning his flight or the tournament.

 

Sandbaggers are, at base, cheaters and hustlers. Golfers who are found out to be sandbaggers are often ostracized and always looked down upon.

Winning a tournament or bet in this fashion is called "sandbagging." A golfer who has won by sandbagging is said to have "sandbagged" his opponents.

 

 

Based on this I would say the guy is not a sandbagger if he's not reporting his casual scores.  If he is reporting them then he's clearly a sandbagger.


Edited by Strandly - 9/18/13 at 2:49am
post #30 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

That is not how "Player Z" was described in the OP.  You're talking about an entirely different person.  And the two points that matter still stand:

-  If the dude plays "an equal number of casual and tournament rounds" then those T rounds will be a large factor in determining his handicap.

- If the difference is more than a couple of shots, he should be adjusted.

OP, do you have any more info on the guys scores?  Like, do you know what the actual stroke difference is?

Sorry for the blank post on this. I tried to edit my response, but got an error message (I'm on my IPhone).

In my opinion, actual scores don't matter. If he is THAT CONSISTANTLY in the top 5 in net tournaments of 20 to 25 players, that's all you need to know (although, I would be interested to see his actual scores).

And I don't think your earlier point about casual rounds just being "practice" is what the handicapping system was designed for. If I was a legit 10 cap that used casual rounds to "practice" those things I wanted to improve, thus having a casual round cap of 14, should I be posting those scores? I don't think so.
post #31 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by boil3rmak3r View Post

And I don't think your earlier point about casual rounds just being "practice" is what the handicapping system was designed for. If I was a legit 10 cap that used casual rounds to "practice" those things I wanted to improve, thus having a casual round cap of 14, should I be posting those scores? I don't think so.

And I think you may be taking the word "practice" too literally here.  I was referring to myself earlier so I'll continue that example here ...

 

I am a 7 handicap right now.  One of my biggest weaknesses is keeping the driver in play.  A common occurrence is that I will epically screw up one or two tee balls per round (a big slice OB here, an ugly low snap hook into the trees 120 yards off the tee there, that type of thing)

 

I try to eliminate those from happening during tournaments, and one way I do it is to hit a lot more 4 irons off of tees.  It is entirely possible that my handicap could be lower (6, maybe even 5) if I played all of my rounds like I play tournaments currently.  But my goal isn't to become a 6 or a 5, my goal is to become a 4 or a 3 or a 2, etc, etc.  How can I get that good if I never gain any experience with the driver?

 

That is what I meant by "all casual rounds are practice rounds."  I didn't mean that I was goofing around, hitting multiple shots, or anything like that. :)

 

Now, that said ... I don't play better during tournaments overall.  This is my first season playing tournaments and of the 7 I played, I think only 3 of them were ever even in my 10 best.

post #32 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

And I think you may be taking the word "practice" too literally here.  I was referring to myself earlier so I'll continue that example here ...

I am a 7 handicap right now.  One of my biggest weaknesses is keeping the driver in play.  A common occurrence is that I will epically screw up one or two tee balls per round (a big slice OB here, an ugly low snap hook into the trees 120 yards off the tee there, that type of thing)

I try to eliminate those from happening during tournaments, and one way I do it is to hit a lot more 4 irons off of tees.  It is entirely possible that my handicap could be lower (6, maybe even 5) if I played all of my rounds like I play tournaments currently.  But my goal isn't to become a 6 or a 5, my goal is to become a 4 or a 3 or a 2, etc, etc.  How can I get that good if I never gain any experience with the driver?

That is what I meant by "all casual rounds are practice rounds."  I didn't mean that I was goofing around, hitting multiple shots, or anything like that. :)

Now, that said ... I don't play better during tournaments overall.  This is my first season playing tournaments and of the 7 I played, I think only 3 of them were ever even in my 10 best.

I probably didn't type my thoughts as well as I should have in my post. I guess I was just trying to describe an extreme example. I'm guessing what you describe is something most of us do...
post #33 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by BuckeyeNut View Post
 

After reading some posts....this thread title should be changed to the "SANDBAGGER SUPPORT NETWORK"..............thread. LOL

 

 

QFT.  Thought I was losing my mind, or had somehow misread the OP!

post #34 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by boil3rmak3r View Post

In my opinion, actual scores don't matter. If he is THAT CONSISTANTLY in the top 5 in net tournaments of 20 to 25 players, that's all you need to know

That's not true at all.

If he plays half his rounds in tournaments by definition he can't be a sandbagger.
post #35 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

That's not true at all.

If he plays half his rounds in tournaments by definition he can't be a sandbagger.

 

This sounds right. If none of his casual rounds are used to calculate the HC, and he plays great in all of the tournaments, the he can't have actually sandbagged.  Maybe he tired to, but just isn't good at it. If I'm understanding the scenario, it doesn't matter what he does in the casual rounds because they aren't counting anyway.

 

I see the point of him always being in the top, but in this case it sounds like he plays on par with his 10 best and everyone gets rattled by the tournament and doesn't.  

post #36 of 75
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkuehn1952 View Post
 

The USGA Handicap Manual is based on a couple of premises.  One of them is, "... that each player will try to make the best score at every hole in every round, regardless of where the round is played ..."

 

Golfer Z plays an equal number of casual rounds and handicap tournament rounds.  When he plays a casual round he is not too concerned with his score.  He follows the Rules of Golf but he doesn't grind over every hole and shot.  He never tries to make a high score but he may take chances even though he knows the likelihood of a good outcome is very low.

 

When tournament time comes around Golfer Z grinds.  He plays smart and doesn't take low percentage shots.  Every stroke is important.

 

At the end of the day, he has a 10.0 to 12.0 handicap index.  The average differential for his casual rounds is 4.5 strokes higher than his tournament rounds.  He doesn't shoot net 58's but he is very competitive against the field in almost every event.

 

Is this guy a sandbagger?  Why or why not?

 

I don't see him as a sandbagger, because he isn't doing anything deliberate to modify his casual scores.  However, I do see a case for his being adjusted by the handicap committee for tournament play.  The committee has the option of only using tournament scores to calculate his index, and this is a case which would justify that modification.

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