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Should the PGA Tour throttle back technology or lengthen courses?


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14 members have voted

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

    • Dial Back Technology
      9
    • Lengthen Courses
      4
    • Neither
      32


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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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6800 yards at 72 is easier than 6800 yards at 70.

What he's talking about is something I said earlier. Changing the par from 72 won't change the average score of the players. The score relative to par is the only thing that would change, but the overall scoring average wouldn't change.

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[CONTENTEMBED=/t/79029/should-the-pga-tour-throttle-back-technology-or-lengthen-courses/72#post_1093719 layout=inline]Quote:[/CONTENTEMBED] [QUOTE name="Lihu" url="/t/79029/should-the-pga-tour-throttle-back-technology-or-lengthen-courses/72#post_1093723"]   6800 yards at 72 is easier than 6800 yards at 70. [/QUOTE] What he's talking about is something I said earlier. Changing the par from 72 won't change the average score of the players. The score [U]relative to par[/U] is the only thing that would change, but the overall scoring average wouldn't change.

Right, so since its just numbers why is everbody so amped about a pro wearing a course out? Does it make the course owners feel bad? Donald Trump was gleeful about one of his redesigns being hard for the pro guys to play. I thought it was a little twisted but the Donald does what he wants to,but nobody was that happy about it. Personally I want to see what is possible on my course, just so I know how far out I am from the best players.

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Right, so since its just numbers why is everbody so amped about a pro wearing a course out? Does it make the course owners feel bad? Donald Trump was gleeful about one of his redesigns being hard for the pro guys to play. I thought it was a little twisted but the Donald does what he wants to,but nobody was that happy about it. Personally I want to see what is possible on my course, just so I know how far out I am from the best players.

I couldn't agree more, Maybe I'm in the minority but I love watching pros pick a course apart be it with length or finesse. It makes me realize why they are there and I am not.

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Right, so since its just numbers why is everbody so amped about a pro wearing a course out? Does it make the course owners feel bad? Donald Trump was gleeful about one of his redesigns being hard for the pro guys to play. I thought it was a little twisted but the Donald does what he wants to,but nobody was that happy about it. Personally I want to see what is possible on my course, just so I know how far out I am from the best players.


Again, it has nothing to do with the score. It's the fact that many courses were not designed to be played by guys hitting the ball 320 of the tees. These tee shots change the nature of the course to something the golf course architects never had in mind. When a par four hole that was designed to be played with say a driver/6 iron is now being played with a hybrid/wedge that's not the hole as it was designed. And that's the issue. It has nothing to do with a number on a card.

cubdog

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Again, it has nothing to do with the score. It's the fact that many courses were not designed to be played by guys hitting the ball 320 of the tees. These tee shots change the nature of the course to something the golf course architects never had in mind. When a par four hole that was designed to be played with say a driver/6 iron is now being played with a hybrid/wedge that's not the hole as it was designed. And that's the issue. It has nothing to do with a number on a card.

cubdog

But tell me, what's wrong with it playing driver/wedge (you know hybrid/wedge is an exaggeration here as well as I do)? If the score is not an issue, than why do you have an issue with the hole playing differently and possibly (depending on length of rough or green speed) playing easier?

I just see no difference between the guys going driver/wedge and driver/6-iron besides the score they could come up with on that hole. It doesn't change anything about the layout of the hole, it merely changes the intended landing area for tee shots.

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it merely changes the intended landing area for tee shots.

Correct and that changes the way the architect intended the hole to be played. If that doesn't bother you fine I have no problem with that. But I can almost guarantee you that it does bother the architects Why do you think so many courses get redesigned? It's primarily because those courses have become obsolete and need to be fixed. Obviously I can't change anyone's mind, and that's fine with me too. We'll just have to disagree on this one.

cubdog

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Correct and that changes the way the architect intended the hole to be played.

Just a minor thing here, but it doesn't change how the architect intended the hole to be played. The architect's intentions are the same regardless of what happens. The optimal strategy just becomes something other that what the architect intended, but that doesn't mean that it isn't a correct strategy or that it is wrong to play it that way.

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I voted neither.  I have some sympathy for the dial back the ball argument, but here's why I come down against it.  The technology has simply increased the value of one of the skills of golf, that skill being the ability to swing the club faster.  A quick and dirty calculation from @ay33660 's contingency table on driving distance categories over the decades since 1980 gives an increase in the standard deviation of average pro driving distances of 7%.  I'd guess that just means there's a wider range of sets of skills that can get you on tour.  Like, being long means you can now average 2-3 clubs less than a below average distance player versus maybe 1-2 clubs less 30 years ago.

And I'm not bothered by "tainting" of the game or whatever.  Personally I'm entertained by the risk/reward of modern par 5s on tour, where a large majority of players can reach many/most par 5s in two with a good drive and a good mid-iron to 3w approach.  Sure the holes are longer now than they used to be, but it seems like things have stabilized and with the tee boxes already pushed back and you get a fun to watch range of par 4s from now quite short 300-350 yard par 4s to tough 490 yarders.

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Just a minor thing here, but it doesn't change how the architect intended the hole to be played. The architect's intentions are the same regardless of what happens. The optimal strategy just becomes something other that what the architect intended, but that doesn't mean that it isn't a correct strategy or that it is wrong to play it that way.


Yes the architect's intentions remain the same but those intentions are not being met. That's pretty clear. I'd love to hear a golf course architect weigh in on this. I'm sure it would be enlightening for those on both sides of the issue.

cubdog

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[QUOTE name="trickyputt" url="/t/79029/should-the-pga-tour-throttle-back-technology-or-lengthen-courses/72#post_1093752"] Right, so since its just numbers why is everbody so amped about a pro wearing a course out? Does it make the course owners feel bad? Donald Trump was gleeful about one of his redesigns being hard for the pro guys to play. I thought it was a little twisted but the Donald does what he wants to,but nobody was that happy about it. Personally I want to see what is possible on my course, just so I know how far out I am from the best players.[/QUOTE] Again, it has nothing to do with the score. It's the fact that many courses were not designed to be played by guys hitting the ball 320 of the tees. These tee shots change the nature of the course to something the golf course architects never had in mind. When a par four hole that was designed to be played with say a driver/6 iron is now being played with a hybrid/wedge that's not the hole as it was designed. And that's the issue. It has nothing to do with a number on a card. cubdog

I am not able to say its a problem for me. I could see some hazards at pro distances to ensure accuracy in combination with distance though, thus allowing guys like me a larger, easier open fairway where we can hack away and carry the hazards. The pros would probably lay up and use a 9i to the green instead. Its impossible really, unless you stretch the course. What is the current avg distance per stroke that the USGA is using anyway?

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I'm not seeing the issue. The problem is the PGA Tour can't go to some of the "classic" courses? I don't care. More weeks of the year I can play them. In case you missed the commercials "[Those] guys are good."

Changing "par" would have a limited, if any, effect, but I have no issue with a tour stop using it as a gimmick and/or a course designer designing based upon them. I don't think it would matter though. We all try to get the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible already. I played a couple of 430 yard par 4s in my most recent tournament, but my goal was to get the ball in the hole in 5.

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I'm not seeing the issue.

Apparently not many here want to see the bigger picture. A par score, or the number of strokes taken per round has never been the issue. The bigger issue, is the fact that many older classic courses have become obsolete. Golf Digest just published their newest 100 greatest American courses for 2015-16. If I'm not mistaken Cypress Point was number three. Too bad it's a short course and will never again challenge the greatest players in a tournament setting. I'd love to see how many other courses on that list are too short for tournament play. I bet the number is substantial. I'd also like to see how many have been lengthened in order to remain viable.

That leads to another critical factor in this discussion which is course maintenance. For golf courses to survive and prosper going forward water usage needs to be reduced. Chemical use also needs to reduced. Can you imagine how much money in water and chemicals would have been saved over the last 20 years if all the courses that added length had not had to do so?

I think the reluctance to a new ball is, more than anything, an ego thing. I can't for the life of me see any negatives if ball  flight was reduced by 10 or 15 percent. All I see are the positives.

I know your all tired of me repeating myself, but I think this is an important issue and one that most likely will not go away. I'll try to give it a rest for now. ;-)

cubdog

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