Teed Off (Jan. 19, 2014)
with Robert Bicknell
When it comes to John Daly, most of us resigned ourselves to accepting the bad with the good and, there is usually a lot of both. Love him or hate him, some love to hate him, while the most seem to hate to love him… but they cannot help themselves.
It seems that nothing is simple in John's world.
For example, last week, Daly made a Hole-in-One at the Humana Challenge on the first swing of a brand new Callaway 9-iron. Everyone thought that he won a brand new US$60,000 Hyundai Equus… but of course, there has to be bad with the good and it seems he didn't qualify for the car because the ace came on a practice shot with following his original shot.
Daly was showing progress last year when a elbow injury knocked him out of action. Following surgery and serious rehab, he a first round shot 66 at the Sony Open, but in typical Daly fashion, rode the roller coaster with rounds of 74 - 64 - 70 to end up tied for 32nd.
Personally, I would love to see Big John get back into the hunt. Golf needs his colorful personality to offset the boredom and, as a two time major winner, he has the ability to shake things up out there.
Besides, he's a pretty nice guy and we need that.
Lastly, Bubba and Dustin need someone to hang out with in the 355-yard club and John fits right in with the good old boys…
Onwards or backwards if you prefer…
While golf continues to boom here in Asia, in the US it's a different story. Clubs are losing money, people aren't picking up the game and, as usual, they are looking for reasons why. Unfortunately, they are looking at all the wrong things just to avoid the truth.
OK, here's the problem… according to ESPN, as of 2009, the US had 18,514 golf courses. Maybe now it would be safe to round if off to an even 20,000. According to a 2009 article in China Daily, there were 30,000 golf courses in the world, but let's bump that up to maybe around 32,000 just to be fair.
So, America easily has the most golf courses, but unfortunately, it also has the most self-entitled citizens on the planet. Just check any US news service. Tolerance has gone out the window and everyone feels like the universe revolves around them.
Rounds have dropped and revenue is down. More people are staying home to social network on Facebook and Twitter than go to the clubs, as they did in the old days. Hey, why get dressed up and DO something when you can plant your butt on the sofa and reach out across the world with one click?
So now you have groups popping up who want to eliminate the rules of golf, claiming they hinder new players from picking up the game. They cite clubhouses with draconian rules such as no mobile phones in the dining room, lounge or on the golf course and jackets required in the dining room. Oh yes, forgot… no hats to be worn inside the clubhouse either.
They have mentioned that it would be better if we increased the size of the hole to make it easier for people who are too inept to putt correctly, or too lazy/cheap to take lessons.
They have mentioned the idea of removing bunkers and water hazards and erecting nets on the sides of the fairways to keep balls from going into the trees and shorting the holes so they don't have to walk so far. A few mentioned changing the game to nine or 10 holes because 18 takes too long to play.
They want to be able to wear T-shirts and jeans if they wish and whatever footwear they so desire, and they want to be able to do what they want when they want or they will not join the club.
Hmm… a larger hole to accommodate poor putts; no water or bunkers; Shorter holes with balls staying in play; clothing resembling casual wear and clown shoes.
Well, there is a sport like that and all the true golfers would appreciate you participate in that one instead of golf…
It's called bowling. — VNS