Dottie Wants LPGA Fedex

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JB

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Dottie Pepper: LPGA needs its own version of FedEx Cup | Tours News | Golf.com

As interim commissioner of the LPGA, Marty Evans has been a stabilizing influence, but as we get closer to the announcement of a full-time replacement for Carolyn Bivens, I have one really big idea I think he or she should consider: an LPGA version of the FedEx Cup.

The 2010 season probably won't start until late March. Perfect. Have the season run from March Madness to Oktoberfest with scheduled weeks off during the men's majors, leaving 24 solid events in which the players accrue points based on the simple, understandable notion that $1 equals one point (something the LPGA did in 2008). The playoffs would comprise three events. In the first two the field would be winnowed from 120 to 60 and then to 30. The survivors would advance to the tour championship, which would bear the seasonlong sponsor's name. That event would be played under the multiple-cut, winner-take-almost-all format of the old ADT season-ender, which was extremely well received by the players and TV.

The three playoff events would satisfy sponsor demand for elite fields, while the rest of the events would meet player demand for full-field opportunities at which they could make a living. And here's one final twist. After a week off following the tour championship, there would be an international team showdown: the Solheim Cup in odd-numbered years and an event featuring the U.S. or the Americas versus Asia or the rest of the world in the even-numbered years. These would be a huge hit in the global market and allow women's golf to go out on a high note every year.
 

92Esquire

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I seriously don't think this would work. Too big of a gamble.

Having Tiger and Phil being in contention on Sunday of this Tour Championship was a best-case scenario for the PGA. But you knew that if Tiger was able to walk upright, he'd be there - and he's the draw. For the LPGA, there's too much risk of having a field of only non-Americans making it to the final round. And while it would still be good golf, it's not going to be the draw to get the sponsorship and TV $$ that it would need to do well.

The LPGA's got a real problem. If it can't find some more competitive American players, it's really going to have to become a global-based tour. And other than men's tennis and men's soccer, I can't think of many other global sports that draw worth a darn.
 

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92,
You are right as far as the sports that draw in this country. They have quite a few tournaments in other countries next year and maybe that helps them earn the dollars. It does not help the draw here in this country.

I also agree that while it would be darn good golf and that is what I personally look for, it would kill the casual fan or the occasional viewer to not see the American players. This showed big time in the Solheim as more people wanted to see their own country and tuned in accordingly.

One thing I think would really do wonders for the LPGA and I have not seen discussed is to have a few "primetime specials". Pit Wie against Gulbis. Creamer against Gulbis. Wie against Creamer. Throw in some of the other popular players such as CK and a few others and have a made for TV event. Keep them both mic'd and see what it draws. If it draws well, then you have some stars in the making. If it does not, then you have to go back to the drawing board and see if there is any way to draw interest.
 

92Esquire

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92,


One thing I think would really do wonders for the LPGA and I have not seen discussed is to have a few "primetime specials". Pit Wie against Gulbis. Creamer against Gulbis. Wie against Creamer. Throw in some of the other popular players such as CK and a few others and have a made for TV event. Keep them both mic'd and see what it draws. If it draws well, then you have some stars in the making. If it does not, then you have to go back to the drawing board and see if there is any way to draw interest.
Heck with girls vs. girls - pit Creamer vs. AK with AK giving up strokes or tee distance. Christina Kim vs. Mickelson. You know, a girl vs. boy match. Like Pressel vs. Karrie Webb. :D

I have to say that probably what did the most for SWMBO and I watching LPGA golf was a series of on-demand shows that Comcast had from the Golf Channel last year - it was the "These Girls Rock" series. Just time watching how they approach the game, some personal stuff, just getting the feeling of hanging out with them around the golf course. SWMBO and I became Christina Kim fans after watching hers. Without that, we probably would not know a whole lot about her.

I think the LPGA needs to do more of that with the Golf Channel - and give them something to run other than HAMMER infomercials and Cialis commercials.
 

C-Tech

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Aren't the Hammer and Cialis commercials advertising the same result?
 

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I think what Pepper is proposing is a start in the right direction. I mean they have to start over some where.

I saw the part about "elite fields" and that makes me wonder. Does LPGA have enough players who could be considered elite players for a decent size field?

".... opportunities at which they could make a living......" People make a living by working hard, and helping their employers earn a decent ROI.

I just don't think the LPGA has the drawing power to have a "FedEx" type event right now. Certainly not an insane dollar amount to the winner. Plus even the men's FedEx is still being worked over to find a a decent format.

The players seemingly shot themselves in the foot with the way they handled the Bivens issue which cost the players a little respect from their fans. You also keep hearing the term "whiner" associated with some of the LPGA players. These and other factors relate to what might be described as a "suspect" product.

Something we have talked about on other forums is for the LPGA, and the Golf Channel to get together an start a version of "Shell's Wonderful World of Golf" for the ladies. $150 grand to the winner, and $75 grand to the loser. The down side discussed is they don't have enough quality players to keep a competitive value with various pairings.
 

Harry Longshanks

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I love(d) the ADT winner-take-all $1M event. Way more like a playoff than the FedEx Cup.
 

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