Saturday, July 5, 2008

Tom Pernice Jr., Only Man In America Bitching After Shooting a 63

There are few things you can do after shooting 63 that are unacceptable.

One thing I'd add to that list is complaining about the PGA Tour commissioner about things that have nothing to do with your current situation.

Pernice tied the course record at Congressional yesterday, shooting a seven-under 63 in the second round of the AT&T National to sit atop the leaderboard with Jeff Overton.

Instead of buying some beers or going home and just smiling at the scorecard, Pernice said the following.

"I think there's several things that commissioner Finchem has done a great job on, and I think there's been several things that he's very weak on," Pernice said.

Umm, alright, I'd agree with that. Most people in life, and at their jobs, do a good job at some things, a poor job at others. It's called being human (you know, how you made bogey on the fourth hole yesterday).

So, he just stopped complaining, right?

Umm, not exactly.

"Why isn't the PGA Tour and Tim Finchem stepping to the plate and using our own rules?" Pernice said. "Tim's been against it all the time. We should have our own rules, and this way we could use V-grooves and everybody can have the same set, and driving the ball in the fairway might make a difference."

The "V-grooves" debate he's talking about deals with the lax decision to allow U-groove wedges for tour players, essentially making it easier to spin the ball out of the fairway and rough. Guys like Pernice, 37th in driving distance this week, hate the fact that big bombers can smoke it off the tee without a worry about landing in the deep stuff because they can just hack it out and produce a lot of spin on the ball, losing the premium of getting the ball in the fairway. This would also be considered "worrying about something that isn't really your problem." Wanna prove a point? Hit a lot of fairways and score better.

Also, he threw this little nugget out there just to wrap it up.

"There are some things that the tour could do to help the sponsors," Pernice said. "I think there's got to be something. Michael Jordan didn't get to skip and not go play in Madison Square Garden against the Knicks when the Knicks were good and he didn't like playing there or whatever."

This, of course, is a direct jab at Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, who have the ability to pick and choose the events they want to play in. The fault in this argument is, of course, Jordan played a team sport while golf is individuals playing and producing for themselves, nobody else. If you miss a cut, you're the one to blame, not a bad pass by Scottie Pippen or a technical foul by Dennis Rodman. It isn't the fault of anyone but yourself, and the production is all yours. If you're number one in the world, leading the money list and FedEx Cup point system, why would you grind it out every week when you can pick and choose the big purses? Also, not sure if you know this or not, but Woods makes a few bucks from sponsors, so the $400,000 third place check just isn't that enticing.

Anyway, I thought it was worth addressing. I know Pernice is just speaking what a lot of tour players won't, but you can't force a golfer to play in tournaments and you can't complain about a rule that is the same for everyone. Nobody is getting special treatment with the wedges, so just suck it up and try to hit the fairways you're used to hitting.

It's golf, you can hit it dead down the fairway and be in the middle of a divot. You don't get to move it, you just have to play it.


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