Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A 15-inch Golf Hole Was Used Last Week


This past October, The Golf Channel's own Visine contributor Charlie Rymer wrote a column about ways to make golf more enjoyable for the average hacker. One of the ideas? A 10-inch cup, which I went ahead and blasted. But little did I know that an editor of the biggest golf publication in the world would not only embrace this, but run with it, hosting an event last week called the W I D E Open Championship, making the holes 15-inches wide! That's like putting into a Prius tire!

The results were as you'd imagine ... golfers who have only seen the red side of par on Augusta scoreboards were posting in the 60s, mainly because the hole was 15-INCHES WIDE!

I just don't get this. Not at all. I understand that golf is really, really difficult. I understand that things can be done to make it a little simpler for people out to just enjoy it. I understand that multiple tee boxes are a brilliant move to make golf more fun and easier for everyone. I get that at times, I'm not nearly as understanding to some of my friends who want to play from the senior tees. I get it. But I don't get this. This isn't golf. This is some Silly Season version of the former, set out to give people a chance to "play golf" when they aren't really playing golf.

Your ability in golf is your ability. It sucks that you'll never be Dustin Johnson, or even Jason Gore, but embracing your ability and trying to tweak things to improve that is what makes this game absolutely beautiful. It sucks that you'll never get to be a four handicap, but it's fun to try and take that 12 to a 10, and then that 10 to an eight. That's the fun of it!

Could you imagine this happening in any other sport? Soccer goals aren't bigger just because you don't play for Man-U. Gyms don't push the three-point line in to the paint just because it's tougher for us to make triples than it is for Ray Allen.

I'm far from a traditionalist (hell, I wore suspenders the other day on the golf course), but I don't really think changing the game this dramatically is making it anymore fun. Are you really going to brag to your friends about a 72 you shot putting to a 15-inch cup? I sure hope not, and if you do, I hope your friends pull an Elin on your knee.

18 comments:

Adam Kelly said...

I completely agree with your post. Although it may be a funny idea to have a hole 15inches wide, where is the sport in that? Part of the finesse and intrigue into golf is the precision and accuracy that you need in your short game. Great post though I had no idea this happened.

seak said...

Shane, the 3 point line is closer in most gyms then it is in the NBA or even college, and kids play on short hoops all the time. Also baseball fields are different sizes etc.

I'm not a fan of the 15 inch hole thing, but most sports have different rules and set-ups for amateurs and younger players

greenfee said...

Why is it that every time someone has an idea to try and make the game more "fun" it involves making it easier. Easy does not equal fun.
Let's quash this as soon as possible and whilst we're at it get rid of the bloody Texas Scramble another sop to golfers who want more "fun".

AZ said...

Agreed that the bigger hole is silly. The one good idea I read from this event is continuous putting -- each player putts out without marking their ball if someone else is away. Yeah, we all like to emulate the pros and their professional courtesy, but putting out would definitely speed up play at most courses.

DingPGA said...

It was only a one day event and 15" holes is pretty over the top. I would think a 6" or 8" hole might be fun from time to time. Especially those all day charity marathon events. There are so many people out there that simply don't have the skills to keep playing this game or don't have the patience to take it up because of it's difficulty. 15 years ago golf was rich with courses and everyone was giddy about it. Frankly courses were overbuilt for many to have fun playing it much less afford it. I think the occasional "big hole" day/event is a nice twist. It's certainly not going to be the norm, just an alternative.

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