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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
      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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Smaller greens, and narrower fairways would trump new technology. Easier, and cheaper to maintain too.

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Courses are plenty long. They aren't hitting driver wedge into every par 4. Tour scoring average is right around par, not sure where 2014 ended up.

PGA Tour per round scoring average

2013 -- 71.09
2012 -- 71.06
2011 -- 71.03
2010 -- 71.15
2009 -- 71.04

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Smaller greens, and narrower fairways would trump new technology. Easier, and cheaper to maintain too.

No, it would further penalize short players and change the character of the game to an overly penal one.

I think Jack had the right idea way back when, when he suggested controlling distance by putting limits on the golf ball.  Now we all know that the explosion of distance is not solely due to the golf ball, but I am pretty sure that they could come up with a golf ball that would basically top out at some reasonable distance, say 260.  Then they could play the great old classic courses the way they were intended to be played, not tricked up as they have to do now. Egos would adjust.

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I believe one thing that the PGA tour has tried is cutting pins closer to the edge of greens, coupled with faster putting surfaces over the years to equalize score.

I don't think lengthening courses is the right thing to do, but having a mix of holes where some of them tighten up after a certain distance is a good idea.   But what I wouldn't want to see is a US Open every week.   A good course should have a mix of tighter and more open tee shots.    By narrowing after a certain point you don't penalize shorter hitters, but the longer hitters can still try for it...they just are in the rough if they miss.

And you should always have some opportunity for people to hit it as hard as they can, on at least a couple of holes.

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... I am pretty sure that they could come up with a golf ball that would basically top out at some reasonable distance, say 260.  Then they could play the great old classic courses the way they were intended to be played ...

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 course construction and maintenance:

  • A 7,500-yard course simply takes up more land than one the tops out at 6,800 yards.
  • A course that ranges in length from 4,400 yards to 7,500 yards - rather than 6,800 yards - will have longer stretches of tee boxes to maintain.
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Watching guys bomb 325 yard drives is boring compared to watching them hit a wedge to a tight pin. Sometimes the traditions of the game, which most of us love, get the way of common sense. Courses should never have grown to the absurd lengths they are today. Modifying the golf ball years ago would have saved millions of dollars in maintenance costs and probably would have saved a few courses from going under. I'd say it's too late to change the golf ball but if the ill timed ban on the long putter is any indication who knows what might happen.

cubdog

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When you only need a driver, a wedge, and a putter to make par, I think there's a problem. That said, I don't think destroying awesome, classic courses by lengthening them is the way to go, even if they have been tour stops since the 1950's.

There's a ton of guys out there that can bomb it 300 yards but who still couldn't break 80 on a PGA tour course. What separates the pros from the rest of us is their shot making ability and creativity, at least it used to be. I think that's what most golf fans like to watch. I don't think people remember drives so much as they do amazing, accurate approach shots,or the ball going in the cup and the amazing chip or putt that got it there, things that us mere mortals could never do.

I think courses can be as challenging now as they need to be without lengthening them.

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I think Jack had the right idea way back when, when he suggested controlling distance by putting limits on the golf ball.  Now we all know that the explosion of distance is not solely due to the golf ball, but I am pretty sure that they could come up with a golf ball that would basically top out at some reasonable distance, say 260.  Then they could play the great old classic courses the way they were intended to be played, not tricked up as they have to do now. Egos would adjust.

+1 !

Simply deal with the golf balls.

Where does this end?

In general as we lengthen old courses were possible and build new courses longer and longer the cost of golf will go up.

We all want to play where the pro's play but I for one am definitely not capable of playing Par 4s over 500 yards. Heck unless they are down wind, down hill and at least 90 degrees, I am not capable of playing a Par 4 over 400 yards.

And what about the time it would a hack like myself to play a 7,500 yard course?

My club is a great old style course built in 1910 but max out at 6,800 yards.

It is way too short to host the PGA or Champions Tours but we are hosting the LPGA this year.

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Watching guys bomb 325 yard drives is boring compared to watching them hit a wedge to a tight pin.

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.

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I am in favor of dropping the par from 72. Its just a number most cannot get to anyway, and we could have all the toys we want. And the courses would have more freedom too, I would think.
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How about instead of making courses longer or limiting the tech in golf balls they make the courses a little tougher by lengthening the rough and keeping the greens firm and fast. Everyone thought that the pros would destroy Merion because it was too short but the winning score ended up being +1. We dont need 8,000+ yard courses or tech limitations (do you really want to see Rory and Bubba only be able to hit it 260?) they just need to make the current courses a little tougher where the pros are punished for poor shots and poor course management.

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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.


Of course it's my opinion. I just don't see much difference in watching a drive if 280 as opposed to one of 320. I do appreciate guys who can drive their ball to the correct spot in the fairway so they can attack a pin. There's no correct opinion in this but it's an important topic that the PGA tour should have been on top of long ago. It's a  shame that so many classic courses have become obsolete. Even more so with the private ones because those courses will never be seen now except by a few lucky members.

cubdog

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Whats so wrong with making all par 3's into par 2's? You should be tight on those pins anyway and you know it. At least half the par 4's I know should be par 3's. Drop the number from 72 to 64 on the scorecard and quit calling certain holes "birdie holes". Cheapest thing to do imo, unless you are boxed into a par 72 frame of mind. That way bombing drives will be incouraged and it will not seem like players are owning the courses.
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Whats so wrong with making all par 3's into par 2's? You should be tight on those pins anyway and you know it. At least half the par 4's I know should be par 3's. Drop the number from 72 to 64 on the scorecard and quit calling certain holes "birdie holes". Cheapest thing to do imo, unless you are boxed into a par 72 frame of mind. That way bombing drives will be incouraged and it will not seem like players are owning the courses.


I don't see how that addresses the problem of courses becoming obsolete. The shorter classic courses were not designed to have players hitting 300+ yard drives, A number on the score card doesn't change that.

cubdog

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