Like in the classic film clip of a two locomotive heading full speed into each other, the PGA and the Top Players of golf will be butting heads with the issues dealing with golf survival. The PGA proposed rule change that will require Top Players to play in a larger number of “Tier 2” (or the Struggling Events as they are deemed) is a logical effort to boost golf’s popularity in these hard economic times. However, resistance will be made from the likes of Tiger and Lefty for reasons that are way beyond understanding their validity.
True, the rule change is an effort to get the icons of golf to park their yachts and help golf survive. Why is that so hard for the now cashed strapped Tiger and the aging Phil Mickelson to envision.
NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa. — There has long been a notion of two separate circuits on the PGA Tour: those events that include Tiger Woods and those that don’t.
This week’s AT&T National here in the Philadelphia suburbs is clearly part of the in-crowd, as the world’s No. 1-ranked golfer has allayed his official hosting duties this year, but remains heavily involved with the behind-the-scenes production of the tournament.
Don’t confuse Woods’ presence for a superior tournament field, though. He is one of just three top-20 players in the Official World Golf Ranking and 13 of the top-50 who are teeing it up this week. While it’s true that group is littered with international players, it is still noteworthy that fewer than half of the top 50 on the current FedEx Cup points list have joined these festivities.
All of which makes me wonder: Could this event, in just its fourth year in existence, be in line for designated tournament status in upcoming years?
There’s a proposal being bandied about by the PGA Tour which states the best players — maybe the top 30 or top 50 — would be required to compete in at least one of a certain number of designated events — could be as few as three or as many as six — within a given season. The theory is that inclusion of some elite professionals would help raise the profile of a few struggling tournaments.
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