More Change the Ball Discussion From Jack...

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blugold

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I think what he is saying and was said earlier in this thread is that courses are not being played the way they were designed to be played. I have no problem with that. I don't think he is jealous of anyone and how far they can hit the ball, he is Jack.

As a course designer this is probably frustrating for him to see. I also don't think that he has the ability to change this just by designing a shorter course. So he goes and builds a 6600 yard course from the tips. Does that mean TM, Nike, Titleist, etc. is going to come out with a ball that goes 80% of the distance of a modern ball? Don't think so. And would anyone buy the ball??

I can understand his frustration, don't think anything is going to change anytime soon, and have no problem with him voicing his opinion.
That's not the problem. The problem is that he is viewing "golf" as the PGA Tour, not the 20,000,000 amateurs that pay green fees at his courses.
 

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That's not the problem. The problem is that he is viewing "golf" as the PGA Tour, not the 20,000,000 amateurs that pay green fees at his courses.
+1 on this

The sport is best know from what those who don't play see on SportCenter, but the game is grown by us, our friends and our kids and grandkids.

The ball, though it's amazing still has to be hit by conforming clubs and mostly by us.
 

fupresti

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Watching the Par 3 and seeing whats in his bag, I might suggest switching from blades to cavity backs and gain some of that lost distance :)
 

Zeff

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Why does anything have to change? Why does my equipment have to change because there are a few PGA Tour players that drive the ball far? Stop changing the game for amateurs because the top pga pros are stupid long.

Also, wasn't the big knock on Jordan Speith last year that he wasn't long enough to stay hot at Augusta?
That was exactly my thought when I came across this thread.
 

Schanker

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I think he's also saying we should limit the game to people under 6 feet tall. He says its unfair that those big guys can hit is right over the trees. So which is it Jack? Technology or athletes are getting bigger, faster and stronger?

Maybe when somebody shoots an 18 at augusta we should consider limiting the equiment.
 

Tadashi70

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Watching the Par 3 and seeing whats in his bag, I might suggest switching from blades to cavity backs and gain some of that lost distance :)
Get out of my brain. I was thinking the same :D
 

McLovin

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do you think when jack turned pro and could hit the ball 300 yards he thought to himself, "gee jackie boy, that one was too long. we really need to dial it back to play the game the way it was intended."

and no, jack didn't average 300, but he could and did hit it that far at least in some of the old speakies i've watched of him playing in his heyday.
 

Tadashi70

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I think he's also saying we should limit the game to people under 6 feet tall. He says its unfair that those big guys can hit is right over the trees. So which is it Jack? Technology or athletes are getting bigger, faster and stronger?

Maybe when somebody shoots an 18 at augusta we should consider limiting the equiment.
I think he has good thoughts. I know he's earned the right to try to effect change in the game.
 

blugold

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I think he has good thoughts. I know he's earned the right to try to effect change in the game.
I will disagree to a point. He has earned no right to say how 99% should be forced to play the game. He is allowed to have an opinion, but that doesn't mean it's a good opinion.
 

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I may not agree with Jack, but until I've done more for the game than he has, I won't belittle his opinions.
 

Tadashi70

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I will disagree to a point. He has earned no right to say how 99% should be forced to play the game. He is allowed to have an opinion, but that doesn't mean it's a good opinion.
How do you think changes occur. Someone with influence offers their thoughts and it gets the ball rolling. In his eyes, he is protecting the game. His years on tour, his wisdom and his track record have warned him that right. Just like you have the right to disagree.

Plus if they adjusted the ball behind closed doors, very few would be able to tell the difference.
 

blugold

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How do you think changes occur. Someone with influence offers their thoughts and it gets the ball rolling. In his eyes, he is protecting the game. His years on tour, his wisdom and his track record have warned him that right. Just like you have the right to disagree.

Plus if they adjusted the ball behind closed doors, very few would be able to tell the difference.
I don't see a need to make a change here. At least not a USGA wide change. He may think that he is protecting the game, but I think he is protecting the PGA Tour from a bygone era from the modern players who have more ability.

Just because he won 18 majors doesn't mean he has any idea how to protect the game.
 

Tadashi70

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I don't see a need to make a change here. At least not a USGA wide change. He may think that he is protecting the game, but I think he is protecting the PGA Tour from a bygone era from the modern players who have more ability.

Just because he won 18 majors doesn't mean he has any idea how to protect the game.
Ok....
 

blugold

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On the same token, I have no idea what "protecting the game" even means.
 

Tadashi70

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On the same token, I have no idea what "protecting the game" even means.
Do you think 400 drives need to happen or even for someone to average 350 off the tee? That would what he would want to guard against and that would be protecting he game.
 

blugold

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Do you think 400 drives need to happen or even for someone to average 350 off the tee? That would what he would want to guard against and that would be protecting he game.
I don't see what's wrong with that. I'm sure Old Tom Morris would have a problem with 250 yard drives.
 

Tadashi70

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I don't see what's wrong with that. I'm sure Old Tom Morris would have a problem with 250 yard drives.
I'm explaining what protecting the game would be. I know you don't care.
 

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I don't see a need to make a change here. At least not a USGA wide change. He may think that he is protecting the game, but I think he is protecting the PGA Tour from a bygone era from the modern players who have more ability.

Just because he won 18 majors doesn't mean he has any idea how to protect the game.
It means he has a little idea of how to change the game. I don't know that I agree on the technology should be limited more for these guys but he is usually asked his opinion which does mean he has earned that right.
 

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I don't disagree with any of this. The best part of it is this...Jack CAN do this very thing right now. He can build shorter courses and/or say "We won't build anything over 6400 yards". Instead, he is continuing to build them at the longest of levels and adding to the clutter of more crowded courses that he openly says cannot survive long term
I think Jack thinks that dialing back the ball ain't gonna happen, whatever he thinks. I have read of the same thought - of dialing back the ball, from Gary Player and Tom Watson also. Almost exactly the same statements - "Dial back the ball, but ain't gonna happen."

There was also the idea of bifurcation - that we'd be allowed the balls that we played with but tour pros be required to play special balls. That's not happening also. They had a chance to implement bifurcation in the anchoring ban but balked.

Well, if the powers that be rules that we can't post handicaps when we play alone....
 

blugold

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It means he has a little idea of how to change the game. I don't know that I agree on the technology should be limited more for these guys but he is usually asked his opinion which does mean he has earned that right.
I agree that he has the right to an opinion and has earned the right to be asked. But that doesn't mean those opinions are any good or that he has any idea how to help golfers enjoy the game more.
 

blugold

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I'm explaining what protecting the game would be. I know you don't care.
But why are on drives bad for the game? I'm not talking the Tour. I'm talking for 99% of the people who play the game.
 

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I agree that he has the right to an opinion and has earned the right to be asked. But that doesn't mean those opinions are any good or that he has any idea how to help golfers enjoy the game more.
He's trying to protect courses and cost. Simply, most courses cannot modify the layout to adjust to the longer game, whether pro or amateur. For example, course was built in the 1970s and has several Par 4s in the 350 - 380 range. Most of the bunkering or hazards are between 240 - 270. If there are many players that hit it over 300 yards, the designs of those holes are irrelevant. A PGA pro or long hitter will just hit it over the hazards and have a lob wedge into the hole. Amateurs that have no business playing the back tees will want to move back because the course will seem "short" to them as the intended hazards are not in play. This, in turn, will just slow the game down.

Also, when new courses are built, they have to be longer to accommodate the long game. This is more expensive to build, and much, much, much more expensive to maintain. (Or you can build a diabolical shorter course that alienates the majority of golfers, something the owners would never let happen.)

Ultimately, though, it has nothing to do with helping golfers enjoy the game more. He's thinking of this from a course designer's perspective. Even as a player, Jack always asked: "Where did the course designer want me to hit this ball?" To take that out of the game goes against something he believes in strongly. And as the greatest golfer of all time, and one of the best course designers (arguably), his opinion should be considered, I would think.
 

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Here's what I'm not sure I get. Is there really a need to "protect" the game from longer hitters at all? Using the Masters as an example, I suppose the thinking is that Tiger and Speith would have shot something like 265 instead of 270 absent the course changes, instead of the 270s they did shoot. And then Jack's record (which he shared with Ray Floyd) would have been demolished instead of barely beaten. But what's so bad about progress over time?

I guess I understand the baseball-type notion that you should always been able to compare across eras--not that it's actually possible in baseball--so if someone shoots 63 at Augusta in 2016, we know that it's the essentially the same level of accomplishment as Nick Price shooting 63 there in 1986. To me though, that's a fantasy anyway. Just like there is no way to tell whether the 2015-16 Warriors are better than the 1995-96 Bulls, and who knows if Shaq was a better big man than Russell--the game has changed over time and there is never an apples to apples comparison.

I suppose I just disagree with Jack's fundamental premise, which seems to be that having pros shoot consistently better scores because they can hit the ball farther--which may or may not be true--is a bad thing. I guess I can be talked into thinking it might be an issue if there was evidence that pros were now hiting nothing but 3-wood, sand wedge or some equivalent on every par 4, thus eliminating a large part of the game. But even that doesn't take into account bad shots, strategic decisions, etc. And the possibility that a shorter hitter who needs driver, 8-iron to the bomber's 3-wood, sand wedge can still compete because he is a lights-out putter, etc. To me, there are just too many variables. Plus, I still come back to what's wrong with athletes (not to start the are golfers athletes debate) getting better over time, even if technology helps push the improvement. Is anyone really mad that the men's 100m dash record was 10.02 in 1968, but is now 9.58? Do we need to make those guys wear heavier shoes or limit the technology they can train with (note that swimming did something like this by outlawing the LAZR suits)?

Edit - I think Dr. RosenRosen made some good points about distance effectively taking hazards out of play, etc.
 

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Do you think 400 drives need to happen or even for someone to average 350 off the tee? That would what he would want to guard against and that would be protecting he game.
So why not make the fairways softer or longer to eliminate 75 yards or roll?

He's trying to protect courses and cost. Simply, most courses cannot modify the layout to adjust to the longer game, whether pro or amateur. For example, course was built in the 1970s and has several Par 4s in the 350 - 380 range. Most of the bunkering or hazards are between 240 - 270. If there are many players that hit it over 300 yards, the designs of those holes are irrelevant. A PGA pro or long hitter will just hit it over the hazards and have a lob wedge into the hole. Amateurs that have no business playing the back tees will want to move back because the course will seem "short" to them as the intended hazards are not in play. This, in turn, will just slow the game down.

Also, when new courses are built, they have to be longer to accommodate the long game. This is more expensive to build, and much, much, much more expensive to maintain. (Or you can build a diabolical shorter course that alienates the majority of golfers, something the owners would never let happen.)

Ultimately, though, it has nothing to do with helping golfers enjoy the game more. He's thinking of this from a course designer's perspective. Even as a player, Jack always asked: "Where did the course designer want me to hit this ball?" To take that out of the game goes against something he believes in strongly. And as the greatest golfer of all time, and one of the best course designers (arguably), his opinion should be considered, I would think.
This is true. The problem is, his voice, while loud is about his profit. He has the ability to not build long courses. He chooses to ignore that and blame the manufacturers...Including his golf ball.
 

blugold

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He's trying to protect courses and cost. Simply, most courses cannot modify the layout to adjust to the longer game, whether pro or amateur. For example, course was built in the 1970s and has several Par 4s in the 350 - 380 range. Most of the bunkering or hazards are between 240 - 270. If there are many players that hit it over 300 yards, the designs of those holes are irrelevant. A PGA pro or long hitter will just hit it over the hazards and have a lob wedge into the hole. Amateurs that have no business playing the back tees will want to move back because the course will seem "short" to them as the intended hazards are not in play. This, in turn, will just slow the game down.

Also, when new courses are built, they have to be longer to accommodate the long game. This is more expensive to build, and much, much, much more expensive to maintain. (Or you can build a diabolical shorter course that alienates the majority of golfers, something the owners would never let happen.)

Ultimately, though, it has nothing to do with helping golfers enjoy the game more. He's thinking of this from a course designer's perspective. Even as a player, Jack always asked: "Where did the course designer want me to hit this ball?" To take that out of the game goes against something he believes in strongly. And as the greatest golfer of all time, and one of the best course designers (arguably), his opinion is definitely warranted I would think.
But why do courses have to be longer? There was just a huge push to get golfers to move up a tee box. If we are overpowering courses, why tee it forward? Why roll anything back? If we are so darn long as a golfing populace, how come scores aren't falling? If the game needs protecting, how come there are fewer and fewer golfers?
 

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