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Should the PGA Tour throttle back technology or lengthen courses?


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  1. 1. Should the PGA Tour throttle back technology or lengthen courses?

    • Dial Back Technology
      9
    • Lengthen Courses
      4
    • Neither
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I think it would be cool if the PGA tour could throttle the ball back, even if they only did so for a handful of tournaments each year. This could bring some of those classic courses that are currently deemed obsolete back into play. They used to play a different ball during the British, so I know that your players would be able to figure it out. For those of us not on tour, how often do you play a course and honestly feel that the technology you are playing with is causing you to overpower the course?
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One solution would be bifurcation for the balls: have Pro tournament "conditions of competition" balls which don't travel quite as far. One thing longer courses do is drive up the cost of cours

Yeah, well, you know, that's just like, your opinion man. I love watching Bubba and Rory bomb it, and I'm sure I would have loved to watch Arnie and Jack bomb it back in the day.

6245 yards http://www.thegolfballfactory.com/Hall-of-Champions/Francis%20Ouimet%27s%201913-United-States-Open-Playoff-Scorecard.htm And I voted for no changes.

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I am very happy with the advances in golf technology since they have allowed a 63 year old like myself hit the ball like I did 15 years ago.  I still score about the same but I am in the game and I do believe the the USGA has established some reasonable limits for MOI, COR, etc.  That being said, the problem seems to be primarily with tour level players and some of the older classic courses playing like they would be for the members.  I still believe that a 6800 yard course can be set up for the pros to challenge their game.  Very tight fairways, rough you can get lost in, greens like greased lightning could all combine to challenge our best players.  No matter how long some of the courses are extended the length does not deter the pros, it is more the trouble on the course and the green difficulty that keeps the pros at bay.

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So are you against the idea of changing the ball for everyone? If not, how to avoid the complaints of the marketing angle, "our ball goes further"? I suppose if all balls were rolled back then other qualities like spin / 'bite' (more or less) and softer feel could replace them as the primary marketing angle.

No I want the rules on golf balls changed, across the board.  Same throttled back ball for everyone.

Somehow I am confident that the marketing flacks will figure out other ways of marketing their products.  I don't think marketing considerations should affect doing what is best for the game.

I'll also mention that I disagree with those (not you) who suggest using a throttled back ball for a couple of events.  Players are not going to want to play intermittently with strange equipment. We are not talking the difference between a ProV1 and a ProV1x we are talking about balls with completely different characteristics.  I doubt they would want to risk messing up their feel for a couple of tournaments a year.

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I am very happy with the advances in golf technology since they have allowed a 63 year old like myself hit the ball like I did 15 years ago.  I still score about the same but I am in the game and I do believe the the USGA has established some reasonable limits for MOI, COR, etc.  That being said, the problem seems to be primarily with tour level players and some of the older classic courses playing like they would be for the members.  I still believe that a 6800 yard course can be set up for the pros to challenge their game.  Very tight fairways, rough you can get lost in, greens like greased lightning could all combine to challenge our best players.  No matter how long some of the courses are extended the length does not deter the pros, it is more the trouble on the course and the green difficulty that keeps the pros at bay.

Well said. :beer:

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I still believe that a 6800 yard course can be set up for the pros to challenge their game.  Very tight fairways, rough you can get lost in, greens like greased lightning could all combine to challenge our best players.

Do you honestly think the pros would welcome playing US Open type setups more than once a year. Doubtful. I would rather see courses played under the conditions the were built to be played on rather than being tricked up because the USGA let the ball specs get away from them. The ruling bodies of golf need to start being more proactive. Instead, we see them once again being forced into a reactive situation. When this happens, as is evidenced here, no one is happy.

cubdog

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I've read a lot of responses indicating to dumb down the ball. Why? Seems like longer and more athletic courses would attract more young athletic types into the game?
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I've read a lot of responses indicating to dumb down the ball. Why?

Seems like longer and more athletic courses would attract more young athletic types into the game?


I thought the thread was about the tour?

I didn't read all the posts, but I don't know if there really is a problem with pro's hitting farther. If it's a big deal, seems like changing the ball would be a bit easier to implement than changing golf courses.

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[QUOTE name="Lihu" url="/t/79029/should-the-pga-tour-throttle-back-technology-or-lengthen-courses/54#post_1093607"] I've read a lot of responses indicating to dumb down the ball. Why? Seems like longer and more athletic courses would attract more young athletic types into the game?[/QUOTE] I thought the thread was about the tour? I didn't read all the posts, but I don't know if there really is a problem with pro's hitting farther. If it's a big deal, seems like changing the ball would be a bit easier to implement than changing golf courses.

Still not convinced that dumbing the ball is a better for the sport than lengthening the courses? Yeah, it's about the tour, but I'm sure it will impact everyone as well.

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Still not convinced that dumbing the ball is a better for the sport than lengthening the courses?

Yeah, it's about the tour, but I'm sure it will impact everyone as well.


I suppose you're right, it would impact the rest of us.

In what ways is the additional yardage that the pros are getting hurting the sport? I still enjoy watching pro golf. Maybe it's because I didn't watch it in the good ole days.

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I suppose you're right, it would impact the rest of us.

In what ways is the additional yardage that the pros are getting hurting the sport? I still enjoy watching pro golf. Maybe it's because I didn't watch it in the good ole days.


It's a complex issue. We can't keep lengthening courses as technology advances and the pros get bigger and stronger. If something isn't done eventually they will be playing on 8,000 yard courses. 1200 additional yards over a 6800 yard track that would have been long in say 1970 comes at a price. More water, more fertilizer, more gasoline more man hours, etc, etc. Where does the money for this come from? Plus, many classic courses have no more land for expansion. So they will become obsolete, for tournament play in a few more years. Then, eventually, new longer courses will need to be built except no one besides the pros will be able to play them as intended because there isn't a 10 15 or 20 handicapper that can play from 8,000. Like I said before the ruling bodies should have been on top of this working with the manufactures long ago. But, just like the long putter fiasco they waited until it was too late and the eventual "solution" will surely be upsetting to many.

cubdog

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Cubdog, there is a physical limit to how far humans can hit a golf ball if the equipment doesn't change much, and since there are limits in place that is the case. Eventually distance will plateau. I suspect that will happen sooner rather than later.
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Cubdog, there is a physical limit to how far humans can hit a golf ball if the equipment doesn't change much, and since there are limits in place that is the case. Eventually distance will plateau. I suspect that will happen sooner rather than later.


Who are you calling fat? :blink: Unfortunately, I resemble that remark. But I have put restrictions on my diet and I can tell you I'm not happy about it!

cubdog

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Do you honestly think the pros would welcome playing US Open type setups more than once a year. Doubtful. I would rather see courses played under the conditions the were built to be played on rather than being tricked up because the USGA let the ball specs get away from them. The ruling bodies of golf need to start being more proactive. Instead, we see them once again being forced into a reactive situation. When this happens, as is evidenced here, no one is happy.

cubdog

As professionals, playing courses that are set up in a more challenging way than normal should be expected.  I do not see distance as having the most effect on today's pros with today's equipment, but more so the course difficulty and setup.  A 600 yard par 5 is not a problem for pros, but waste areas, deep rough, and devilish greens are much more of a problem.  They cannot always expect to score -24 with soft greens and wide open fairways when playing for so much prize money.  One course in particular, Shawnee in PA, hosted the PGA Open in the late 30's and has seen its up and downs, but is still quite a poke playing from the men's tees - the tips are 6800.  This is a Tillinghast course (I believe his first) but is set up today with wide open fairways and moderate greens for resort type playing.  Narrow the fairways, add some waste areas 310 - 350 out, grease up the greens, and it could be a challenge for the best.  Sure, old T did not expect anyone to drive the ball 340, but this can be mitigated, and at the same time maintain its original character for 99% of golfers.  Call it tricked up if you like, but I just consider it keeping the course competitive for all level players.

That being said, I do hope that the USGA ensures that we have reached the limit on the distance from our equipment.

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Who are you calling fat? :blink:  Unfortunately, I resemble that remark. But I have put restrictions on my diet and I can tell you I'm not happy about it! cubdog

Sorry, what do you mean about me calling someone fat. I originally had a typo that said fat instead of far, maybe that's what you're referring to? I still think that nothing needs to change necessarily since they already have limits that all golf manufacturers have reached long ago. The main sources of distance now will be swing optimization, aerodynamics, and tweaking of weight distribution to produce better spin numbers. I don't picture anyone hitting it much more than 15-25 yards further on average even when these changes have been implemented, and there's nothing wrong with 6800 yard courses having challenges other than distance.

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Sorry, what do you mean about me calling someone fat. I originally had a typo that said fat instead of far, maybe that's what you're referring to?

I knew it was a typo. I was just trying to inject a little humor into this thread. Man people are serious around here.

cubdog

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I knew it was a typo. I was just trying to inject a little humor into this thread. Man people are serious around here. cubdog

Just wanted to make sure since it sounded like you might have been serious.

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[QUOTE name="JonMA1" url="/t/79029/should-the-pga-tour-throttle-back-technology-or-lengthen-courses/54#post_1093622"]   I suppose you're right, it would impact the rest of us. In what ways is the additional yardage that the pros are getting hurting the sport? I still enjoy watching pro golf. Maybe it's because I didn't watch it in the good ole days. [/QUOTE] It's a complex issue. We can't keep lengthening courses as technology advances and the pros get bigger and stronger. If something isn't done eventually they will be playing on 8,000 yard courses. 1200 additional yards over a 6800 yard track that would have been long in say 1970 comes at a price. More water, more fertilizer, more gasoline more man hours, etc, etc. Where does the money for this come from? Plus, many classic courses have no more land for expansion. So they will become obsolete, for tournament play in a few more years. Then, eventually, new longer courses will need to be built except no one besides the pros will be able to play them as intended because there isn't a 10 15 or 20 handicapper that can play from 8,000. Like I said before the ruling bodies should have been on top of this working with the manufactures long ago. But, just like the long putter fiasco they waited until it was too late and the eventual "solution" will surely be upsetting to many. cubdog

I just dont get this thinking. Who has a lockup on a 72 par? Why is a number so critical? Personally I only have 3 numbers that are important. My social security number, 42, and 69. A score of 50 on a standardized length course is just a goal for me. I really dont get the psychosis involved with 72 as par. Unless PGA is a cult and there are secret things going on that I am unaware of, if they do well so be it and I dont give a rats a@@.

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