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# Net Double Bogey for Handicap and League Competition?

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(edited)

For years and years our league has used double-par as the maximum score to be entered on any one hole. It was used both for the competitive score as well as in the handicap calculation for our weekly net stroke play competition. The old “Equitable Stroke Control” figure was never used. Last year we changed to a maximum Net Double Bogey for the handicap calculation but we still used double-par as the max number for the gross score. For next season we’re thinking of changing to using NDB for both, but should we? Some are thinking we should still use double par for the weekly competition as NDB maybe gives an unfair advantage to the higher handicappers. That's what we're not certain about.

The average handicap in our league is 18 (they range from 5-34) and there are usually one or two blow-up holes that occur each week, mostly by one of the higher handicappers, although there are a couple of difficult Par-3’s over water that could, and have, snagged everyone at one time or another. Regardless, although we're not sure, we’re guessing the overall impact of changing would be minimal because some of those net double bogey holes would end up at double par anyway.

Just curious, what do other leagues do?

Edited by xrayvizhen
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Use NDB. The rounds that use even NDB rarely count toward a handicap, so people who say "oh, but taking only an 8 on that par five is two strokes lower than taking a double-par 10" are both mathematically correct and real-world relatively insignificant.

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I agree with @iacas that the high numbers being lopped off rarely make much of a difference in anyone's handicap.

Do you have the players record net double bogey or do they record their actual score and the committee applies the limitation? I find many players struggle with recognizing which holes are their stroke holes (or 2 stroke holes) and then working out what net double bogey would be. We are a senior league, not a league of mathematicians.  😉  We have our players limit themselves to a maximum of "9" on any hole and let the tournament management software calculate the ESC/Net DB for posting.

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21 hours ago, bkuehn1952 said:

I agree with @iacas that the high numbers being lopped off rarely make much of a difference in anyone's handicap.

Do you have the players record net double bogey or do they record their actual score and the committee applies the limitation? I find many players struggle with recognizing which holes are their stroke holes (or 2 stroke holes) and then working out what net double bogey would be. We are a senior league, not a league of mathematicians.  😉  We have our players limit themselves to a maximum of "9" on any hole and let the tournament management software calculate the ESC/Net DB for posting.

It's not the handicaps we're concerned about....we know that's going to be accurate. It's the weekly and overall year-end competition we're concerned about. We're thinking average scores will be artificially lower than they actually should be.

Players just turn in their gross scores and the software does all the calculating after someone (meaning me) plugs in everyone's gross scores hole by hole. There's no way 99% of these guys would be able to figure out which holes they get strokes on and how many. Since I'm considered the numbers guru, I'm the one elected to figure this stuff out and will ultimately be the one who makes the decision (and get the bitching afterwards). I'm leaning towards agreeing with @iacas though.

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3 hours ago, xrayvizhen said:

We're thinking average scores will be artificially lower than they actually should be.

Again, it'll be rare, and far more often affect only those who are going to finish in the bottom half anyway.

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On 12/1/2021 at 7:29 PM, bkuehn1952 said:

I find many players struggle with recognizing which holes are their stroke holes (or 2 stroke holes) and then working out what net double bogey would be. We are a senior league, not a league of mathematicians.  😉  We have our players limit themselves to a maximum of "9" on any hole and let the tournament management software calculate the ESC/Net DB for posting.

In our league, handicaps range from 5 to 40. We tried NDB but was a mess. People didn't know, and as it could change from week to week, people got it wrong.  Double par on par 3's didn't seem like enough, so was voted to just keep gross scores for league purposes.  Our league uses a combo of points for match play and stroke play.  We see 13's carded now and then.

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(edited)

Not to belabor the point even further but I asked a local teaching pro I know. Instead of answering directly, he suggested emailing the USGA or the N.J. State Golf Association. He said either would respond quickly. So, I emailed both, and they both responded the very next day and agreed. To quote the USGA, "Since this is a net format of play, we would not recommend using a net value like net double bogey as a maximum hole score for the purposes of the competition. We would recommend setting a fixed gross maximum hole score value for the purposes of the competition, such as double-par, 10 strokes, etc., so it is consistent for all golfers where they can discontinue play."

I'm now inclined to go with that, mainly because we won't have to do anything different than we did last year nor will we have to "alert the troops" which always raises a stink.

Edited by xrayvizhen

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