So Justin Thomas’s victory in the Honda Classic on Sunday was overshadowed by him acting like a spoiled little country club brat. In case you missed it he had a fan kicked out of the tournament for yelling “Get in the Bunker” AFTER he hit his tee shot on the 16th. Yes you read that right. The ball was in midair when the fan yelled and soft little Justin still had him booted from the premises.
I was so disappointed in his behavior and subsequent fake apology that I tweeted this to Justin Thomas in the heat of the moment.
Well this set of a war on my twitter between what I would call golf purists and people like myself who want to save the great game of golf. This battle continues to rage on as I speak. That’s when it hit me. People who love golf shouldn’t be arguing with each other. We should be helping each other. After all, we all want the same thing and that’s to secure the future of this great game of ours. That’s when it hit me. I need to write a Golf Manifesto. Something that both golf purists and guys like me can all rally behind. So without further ado here we go. Here is my 6 point plan to open up golf beyond the white waspy world of the elite and let it be a game that all races, creeds and genders can enjoy. It is my #metoo movement for golf. 6 simple changes that will revolutionize the game moving forward and ensure it’s survival in this new what have you done for me lately millennial world we live in.
1. Make Every Tournament Is The Waste Management
This is the most obvious and needed change. What is the most fun tournament of the year every year? The Waste Management in Arizona. Why? Because fans get to be fans. They don’t have to sit on their hands and act like they are in church. They drink, heckle and and have fun which is what sports is all about. I’ve never understood why golf fans can’t make noise. If a professional golfer can’t focus and concentrate then they shouldn’t be a pro golfer. If you root for everybody you are rooting for nobody. Why can fans yell during a free throw but not during a tee shot? It makes no sense. If the cheering was consistent players would get used it. Mental focus should matter. Weak ass country club players like Justin Thomas would have to get tough or hit the road.
2. Quiet Car Holes
This is me reaching out an olive branch to golf purists and old people. You know how the Amtrak Acella Express has quiet cars where you can’t use your phones or talk? Let’s have 4 or 5 quiet holes on the course. These are for fans and golfers who like complete silence. Who like to live in black and white movies. If you yell or scream or make a commotion on these holes you do get kicked out of the tournament and I won’t say boo.
3. Speed Hole
There will be 1 hole every round where it’s not how many strokes it takes to get the ball in hole but how fast your finish. Everybody tees off at the same time and then it’s just a sprint to finish the hole. You can also play defense and hit your opponents ball. But if you hit your opponents ball out of bounds or lose the ball then you are disqualified from the hole and everybody starts the hole over.
4. 1 Throw Per 18
What is always the most exciting part of golf? When the leader of a tournament runs into trouble and opens the door for the rest of the field. What is always the most boring part of golf? When the leader runs away with it and there is no drama at the end. So I propose giving each golfer 1 throw of their opponents ball after their tee shot at any moment. Again you can’t throw it out of bounds or in the water but you can throw it in the rough or behind a tree. Just something to make it hard for the leader to maintain his lead.
5. Spring Break Par 3 Hole
Golf is generally played in warm weather locations. Most courses have par 3s with water surrounding them. What if 1 hole per 18 was a spring break hole? Chicks in bikinis. People on lounge chairs. People dancing. A DJ. Tropical drinks. You want to get young people into golf? Have 1 spring break Par 3 hole. And the imagery on TV would be spectacular but not overly gratuitous. Just some soft Masters type music while you looks at some fit coeds. Who doesn’t love that? Not to mention it opens the door to an entirely new group of advertisers. #savegolf
6. Gambling On Every Hole
Probably the biggest no brainer on this list. You need to have 1 or 2 featured groups that you follow every shot of the tournament and let people gamble on every hole. Suddenly every hole becomes must watch television. There is a reason people love the skins game. Because it’s non stop action. Imagine tuning into a golf tournament at any point and just casually being able to be on a specific upcoming hole? I’d be glued to the television. There is a reason the NBA wants to legalize gambling. There is a reason the NFL is the #1 sport in America. It’s called gambling. Golf is built for gambling. People gamble on it all the time. It’s time to take gambling from the seedy underbelly of wealthy clubhouse locker rooms to the mainstream.