Did you see the news from the PGA Tour?
The people who govern our great game get it. They know golf needs to work on appealing to all of the masses, not just crazies like us.
But there’s still a lot of work to be done.
So I thought it was particularly exciting – and about time – when the PGA Tour announced that fans would be allowed to take photos and videos with their cell phones during all tournament rounds, starting this week. The only proviso is that your phone has to be on silent, and you can’t use a flash (as if you’d need one unless the tournament is finishing in near darkness).
Let’s face it: Cell phones have become such an important part of our lives, we almost feel lost without them. Asking people to walk around a golf course and keep their cell phone in their pocket – and chastising them if they dared to try to shoot a photo with it – was just dumb.
Did you see the news from Augusta National?
The home of the Masters has taken its share of lumps over the years, and rightfully so in many cases. But Billy Payne did a lot of good things during his 11 years as chairman of the club and the tournament, and that work was properly commemorated last week when he announced that he will retire in October.
His most important move was to admit Augusta’s first female members, but he also made the Masters much more spectator-friendly – or patron-friendly, as they like to say. It long has been one of the greatest sports events of the year, but under his leadership it seems to have been elevated a notch or two.
Did you see the news about Lucas Glover?
His right foot slipped as he tried to hit a shot from a sidehill lie on the 18th hole of The Northern Trust on Saturday, and he crumpled to the ground in pain. It brought back memories of Tiger Woods grimacing on shot after shot in the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines.
But here’s where golfers are different from other athletes. Glover actually apologized to his playing partners for the delay that was created while he writhed on the ground. He had a knee injury but limped through the rest of the hole.
Did you see the news from the Safeway Open?
John Daly and two-time World Long Drive Champion Jamie Sadlowski accepted sponsor invitations to the Oct. 4-8 event at Silverado. Phil Mickelson previously said he would be there.
Silverado isn’t a particularly long course, so it will be interesting to see how much the big hitters brutalize it. One of the most exciting shots in golf is watching someone reach a par-4 from the tee, which is why so many tournaments are working the short par-4 into their course setups.
For tickets to the Silverado event, go to www.safewayopen.com.