USGA, R&A Outline Plan To Dial Back Distance - Dog Leg News

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Tom Edrington

Tom Edrington spent the first 10 years of his misguided youth as a sports writer for the Tampa Tribune. His career brought him face to face with many of sports greatest stars -- Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Muhammad Ali, Don Shula, countless Hall of Fame NFL stars, more PGA Tour players than he can count. In 1980 he was honored by the Golf Writers Association of America for writing the best news story that year, his coverage of Jack Nicklaus' U.S. Open victory at Baltusrol. Today, 36 years later, golf is still a great part of his life, thanks to competitive playing days and the wonderful people he has met on this fabulous journey.

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  1. 1

    baxter cepeda

    There’s a long way to go with this so we can take it slow.

    Since Tom posted this article players like JT, even dealing with one controversy, and Rory, to a smaller extent his own controversy, are jumping into this controversy with bold statements.

    While it is in vogue to say rolling back distance will benefit bombers as it did for tiger back in the day— it’s not the same —tiger was the best iron player from any distance.

    These bombers and stars today seem to be hiding their personal concerns by advocating for the weekend warriors.

    Btw The word amateur doesn’t apply here because many amateurs are even longer than many top players.

    What is important to remember is any roll back will simply not allow the Brysons and Rory’s and all the bombers of the world to eliminate iron play from elite golf.

    Weekend warriors will not even notice a change.

    Rory seems to want to eliminate the iron and full wedge play which kills him weekly ; his advantage is a drive and a chip. But sorry rory, that changing. Eventually.

    Its also likely a player like JT , who is specifically defending the ball today, must be worrying that he is so good with the wedge and ball combo now, he may not be able to do the things he can do that rory cannot do.

    The top guys are also seemingly defending the manufacturers whom sign checks for them.

    It is important to note this is about eliminating the spring effect guys who swing well over 110 mph get; really it’s the 120 mph and up guys getting the crazy spring effect currently.
    This means these guys not only hit it farther, they are getting an extra boost. This is the main issue. Tripp addressed this again, as well as his desire for more spin at high speeds, which I don’t know if that’s as needed personally; but not against it. The sweet spot issue, the spin issue, these are tied but also separate to distance. But it would be good fit there to be more discrepancies in distance based in hitting sweet spots. Today if a guy cuts a huge corner over a neighborhood, he knows he will most likely pull it off. It shouldn’t be that obvious. There needs to be more risk.

    Today’s golf technology — aside from the driver face being the size of a 70s tennis racket, which helps weekend warriors make contact — is really designed for the elite golfer. The ball also.
    They know people will buy what the stars use.

    Again, weekend warriors will not notice any changes. If I give a kid or a friend a brand new Titleist, they really would notice no difference from a 20 year old range ball. They just hit it and play and have fun. Let’s not make this about them.

    That being said What really needs to happen is that It’s time manufacturers truly get back to making stuff for consumers; instead of elite golfers.

    Make swings under 90 mph get some spring effect while the faster swings have to earn every yard.

    But again, no one needs panicking here. The usga is not full of itself, as rory is implying, it simply has an incredibly tough job balancing what these elite golfers and manufacturers collaborations are doing to the game.

    Let’s not even get into the prices of equipment, which the manufacturers must recoup from weekend warriors despite the design of the clubs being for the elite golfers; whom are also getting the companies money.

    I really find the whole thing with golf equipment unfair to the consumer. I play a 913 Titleist I bought used a few years ago. I bomb it and do think I’m good enough to benefit some from newer technology but definitely not enough to spend hundreds even thousands for one club. It’s just not worth it. Wish more people understood the prices folks see on the shelves for golf stuff is a huge deterrent for them.

    Sure there is cheaper stuff and used stuff, but that’s what people see and say because they don’t know better. If they only knew this stuff wasn’t even designed for them.

    Weekend warriors: have no fear.

    Pga tour boys: stop crying.
    Take it easy. Nothing will happen overnite but maybe start working on your iron game a little more.

    1. 1.1

      Tom Edrington

      Baxter: Yes, a ways to go on this, will have no effect on recreational players; Mostly professional tours; Guys a rollback would hurt — a guy like Webb Simpson and someone like Tiger, he can’t afford to lose any distance….

      1. 1.1.1

        baxter cepeda

        I don’t think so Tom. Webb gets no significant spring effect already. He will be playing from the same places.
        Tiger, who still pushes to be in those higher ball speeds because he wants that special spring effect, would struggle. But I think it helps tiger if the top guys have to play more irons. We know how good he is with irons.


          Tom Edrington

          Tiger’s problem is two fold: 1. Doesn’t putt as well as he used to; 2: Doesn’t read the greens as well as he used to (44-year-old eyes)….looking forward to him getting back out there; But as we look at the discussion and feedback period for any changes, doubt anything happens until sometime in 2022.

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