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Golf Is Becoming Too Much Like Other Sports?


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Golf is Becoming Too Much Like Other Sports  

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  1. 1. Do you agree or disagree with the article? No fence-sitting — pick one. 😀

    • I agree with the article for the most part.
      18
    • I disagree with the article for the most part.
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Golf is undergoing an unprecedented amount of change. As we hurtle forward, the game’s atmosphere is likely going to trend more toward WM Phoenix Open and less Masters, which is OK, but let’s keep golf as the gold standard among sports for showing respect.

How do we identify that subtle line between enthusiastic and inappropriate? In my column from the December/January Issue I put forth a few ideas, and welcome others, but let’s agree the urgency for collective action is high.

77008e04bad5ee5e2d654d185a584865416762e6
Max Adler, Editorial Director


https://www.golfdigest.com/story/editors-letter-lets-steer-golfs-popularity-the-right-way-tiger-woods-liv-golf

Some quotes:

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Anyway, after winning a match, a boy pantomimed shooting an arrow into the sky before shaking his opponents’ hands. The gallery of shrieking parents, presumably new to golf, had behaved aggressively the entire nine-hole match.

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Is not part of what makes golf unique an atmosphere that’s distinct from football, basketball, hockey, wrestling, etc.? Has golf not always been, in large part, a refuge for more quiet souls who prefer athletic pursuit with a different tone? Let wide receivers shimmy and bump chests after a touchdown. I’d prefer we teach new golfers that after a birdie putt drops, you pick that ball out of the cup and put it in your pocket.

Quote

Fist-pumping Tiger Woods is (was) the greatest of this era because he could play with an emotional intensity for 72 holes that most other pros could summon for only two or three. He didn’t hide it, though he never crossed the line of offending his opponent. Tiger never shot a bow and arrow to the sky.


So, what's your take?

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May we take a quick timeout, please? Is not part of what makes golf unique an atmosphere that’s distinct from football, basketball, hockey, wrestling, etc.? Has golf not always been, in large part, a refuge for more quiet souls who prefer athletic pursuit with a different tone? Let wide receivers shimmy and bump chests after a touchdown. I’d prefer we teach new golfers that after a birdie putt drops, you pick that ball out of the cup and put it in your pocket. The exception can be winning the Ryder Cup.

I would be more against parents being boisterous during the match versus the kids showing emotion when they win or make a big play. 

Quote

 On the other hand, pro golf is positioned for the trappings of true global sports, like soccer and car racing, with mega contracts and mega stages that overwhelm the senses. As LIV’s slogan promises or threatens, depending on your point of view, “Golf, but louder.”

I actually disagree with this. I do not think golf will reach that peak. Sorry, but 1/2 of the planet watches golf. It's not going to come close to that. 

Quote

As we hurtle forward, golf’s atmosphere is likely going to trend more WM Phoenix Open and less Masters, which is OK, but let’s keep golf as the gold standard among sports for showing respect.

IDK if more courses are going to get the Pheonix Open. That is a unique situation. The footprint size for golf to be in a stadium is daunting. I do not know if having quasi-golf event in a baseball/football stadium will work. I am not going to go sit and watch golfers hit into a simulator. It just seems to fake for me. I think it is the wrong direction to go. I would rather see modifications to the format of golf tournaments than try to do this sort of thing. 

In the end, I think this article has more to do with the fans than the players. I do not see golf more becoming like the WM Pheonix Open unless the professionals want it. If golf sticks with traditional golf tournaments, this will not happen for a long time. 

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I agree with the article's statement that I'd like to keep golf's etiquette and decorum different from other sports. 

I also agree (although the author didn't expressly state this, but implied it) that parents watching their kids play are becoming bigger and bigger D-bags. I think this may be true of all sports though, not just golf. 

I also agree that it "feels" like parents are doing a poorer and poorer job teaching their kids to respect the game, the course, and their opponents. This too, might be true of all sports, not just golf. 

So, if the author is trying to say that golf should have a different level of etiquette and decorum, I agree. If the author is saying young people need to be taught both by words and by example to respect their sport, their opponent, and themselves. Then, once again, I agree. 

 

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I agree with the article and hope golf does retain a lot of the decorum of the past but I am afraid it is going the other way.  I think many on this site were raised watching a lot of tournaments where the WM Phoenix Open atmosphere was a 1 off each year and the Ryder Cup was a 1 off every other year.  However I am afraid many newer fans may be primarily watching those events and fewer regular events and are getting more of the idea that those are normal and not outliers.  

As for shooting the arrow in the sky I'd like to see it to make a better judgement.  Years ago Chi-Chi Rodriquez would do a sword dance and I was OK with that.  Maybe I would be OK with the arrow thing but need to see it to know.

 

As for the fans, they need to settle down.  I've not been at any junior events but the article said something to the effect about the fans were being aggressive.  That is not good in my view but we see it in many other sports and I do not want to see that in golf.  Just think of what it would be like to be at a golf tournament and have the fans break out in massive fight like has happened at some Football (Soccer) games.  When UM beat OSU a few weeks ago I congratulated my colleagues & friends that are UM Fans on a well played game.  That is what I hope we can have in Golf.  Healthy & Fun Competition without Hate.

 

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Well, I agree with the desire to have golf maintain a high level of respect for one's opponent at any rate. 

Standards for things like decorum and sportsmanship constantly change. They evolve or devolve depending on your point of view. It is as inevitable for golf as it is any other facet of human existence.  The business of shooting the imaginary arrow into the sky certainly does seem like quite the display for the golf course. I'd imagine that if you put a Tiger Woods-style fist pump on display in the 50s or 60s the reaction would have been at least similar. I wonder if that kid's opponent thought anything about it at all. 

 

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6 minutes ago, StuM said:

As for shooting the arrow in the sky I'd like to see it to make a better judgement. 

I thought the same thing. 

 

7 minutes ago, StuM said:

I've not been at any junior events but the article said something to the effect about the fans were being aggressive.  That is not good in my view but we see it in many other sports and I do not want to see that in golf.  Just think of what it would be like to be at a golf tournament and have the fans break out in massive fight like has happened at some Football (Soccer) games. 

The NFL averages a couple of deaths each year outside stadiums after games. They only average one or two deadly incidents per year, but any at all is too big of a number. Normally, the person is killed outside the game in the parking lot, but a Patriot's fan was punched and died inside the stadium in September this year. 

 

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I generally agree with the sentiments in the article. A person celebrating a great putt like Chi Chi did at that level seems fine. Rubbing it in when vanquishing an opponent is probably poor form in golf in many instances. 

The video on Chi Chi reminds me of a story Miguel Jimenez told our group at a pro-am half a dozen years ago: 

Chi Chi was on the tee with Lee Trevino and pointed over to a row of nearby port-a Johns and indicated that those were Mexican condos. After a little more ribbing along those lines, Lee responded that they were indeed Mexican condos and that they keep the Puerto Ricans in the basement.

Hope I did not offend anyone with that. But it seemed like a great come back by Lee.

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I honestly wished the bravado in other sports will cool down and show more respect. Phoenix Open is okay for one event, but the majors are more what I would like to return to for most tournaments. 

I can’t recall who said it, but upon scoring a touchdown in the NFL, they said, “act like you’ve been there before.” I always feel over celebrating will come back to haunt you in every sport including golf.

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1 hour ago, boogielicious said:

I can’t recall who said it, but upon scoring a touchdown in the NFL, they said, “act like you’ve been there before.” I always feel over celebrating will come back to haunt you in every sport including golf.

It was Calvin Hill (NFL great and Yale graduate) who said it to his son Grant Hill (NBA great). Grant was a client of the Bank that I worked for and over the course of several years donated signed basketballs for auction by the Warwick (RI) Boys and Girls Clubs of which I was the Treasurer. 

In answer to the original question, Yes.

Edited by Bob M
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Re: shooting an arrow in the sky, I think it's fine, really. If the kid had shot an arrow at the other player(s), then it'd be different. Shooting an arrow in the sky? Seems about the same as a big fist pump to me.

Spectators need to chill the f*** out, yeah. But I've rarely if ever seen anything outrageous from an actual player. I still see women and girls giving hugs at the end, and men/boys shaking hands.

Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
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23 hours ago, boogielicious said:

I honestly wished the bravado in other sports will cool down and show more respect. 

This 100%. I was watching a poor sportsmanship video on YouTube where kids where gesturing like NBA players in their opponents faces when making a 3 or a great basket. I believe golf is different in that any kid watching most golf tournaments is going to see the class and decorum one should demonstrate on the course. It's mainly the NBA and NFL that show kids it's ok to thump your chest just doing your job even if your team is down by 20. 

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27 minutes ago, Bo the Golfer said:

It's mainly the NBA and NFL that show kids it's ok to thump your chest just doing your job even if your team is down by 20.

You mean like this guy? 😆

image.png

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I do agree with the article.  
i do not think golf is anywhere close to basketball and football or probably even baseball but it is headed in that direction.  
I like tradition and nostalgia and I like that about golf and the masters. I like the old school values coming through in a huge intense competition. 
I also like the WM Open…. Once or twice a year.  I love the Ryder Cup but i just personally would get tired of it week after week. I get that with football. I dont need more of it with golf. 
 

image.jpeg.0e8cbbb3f722b4f5bb7b52bdd4693b06.jpeg

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This summer, at a high school golf match at my course, parents had a fist fight over the rules. I wish I was there. 

Sportsmanship is sportsmanship, no matter the sport. 

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9 hours ago, phillyk said:

This summer, at a high school golf match at my course, parents had a fist fight over the rules. I wish I was there. 

Sportsmanship is sportsmanship, no matter the sport. 

This is what's concerning. Terrible. We've seen some stuff at soccer tourneys too. 

For some reason junior golf has seen more ugliness than the average CC/Muni scene it seems. Over-invested/undereducated (golf wise) parents seem to get out of hand.

The celebrating/gloating/taunting/rubbing in is nothing new IMO.

On a general note, I agree with the article. But then our leadership freely hurls insults and call each other names on national TV these days. Couldn't imagine some of the stuff said 'back in the day'.

Boorishness is here to stay IMO. It's bound to trickle to golf as in every aspect of our social interactions.

Edited by GolfLug

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My inference is that the author is using a myriad of examples to say he doesn’t like celebrations unless you won the Ryder Cup. To me, that’s too lofty a standard. I rarely celebrate my own shots because I am seldom impressed by anything I do, but will wildly celebrate my playing partners birdies. Golf is such a difficult sport that I don’t think we celebrate enough! Even the best golfers don’t seem to average more than 2/round, per Lou Stagner and Arccos. I fully support cheering after completing any holes under par.

I am no fan of poor sportsmanship, and avoid any sports funded by PIF. Treating others with respect coupled with a little excitement is a good thing.

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  • 1 month later...

To me, golf has been losing the proper etiquette and gentleman's game title for quite a few years now. My opinion is that the golf industry thinks that the strict adherence to etiquette and traditional golf has been roadblocks to "growing the game" for the newer generations.  I think golf did not grow much after Tiger era because golf is just difficult and takes a lot of time and effort to be proficient.

 

I'm a traditionalist when it comes to golf etiquette and playing golf. I think everyone should know the etiquette before stepping on the golf course. My dad did not allow me to play on the golf course until he felt my game was good enough and that I knew the proper etiquette. I think courses should have introductory golf lessons and the first lesson should be golf course etiquette and that beginner golfers should start on Par 3 executive courses first. 

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8 hours ago, CrashTestDummy said:

To me, golf has been losing the proper etiquette and gentleman's game title for quite a few years now. 

Nothing wrong that that, IMO. Change is good.

8 hours ago, CrashTestDummy said:

My opinion is that the golf industry thinks that the strict adherence to etiquette and traditional golf has been roadblocks to "growing the game" for the newer generations. 

 

Because it most likely has been a roadblock. Probably not the largest roadblock since affordability/accessibility to the game, equipment, etc is likely a larger roadblock, but still a roadblock nonetheless. "traditional" golf and how people viewed golfers say 20 years ago needed to evolve to capture the attention of younger audiences as the baby boomer generation phases out of the game and eventually will no longer be a living demographic.

Let's put it this way, surely you don't think that strict adherence to etiquette and traditional golf has brought more people from newer generations to the game, right?

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