Monday, June 22, 2015

Golf Needs Tiger

This weekend was the US Open, one of the 4 major golf tournaments, and I didn't watch it.  I used to. And I would watch the Masters and the British Open, but I haven't watched a golf tournament in a while, and don't see myself doing so anytime in the near future.  And, I suspect I am not alone in this.

I grew up watching golf with my dad, and following the biggies, Palmer, Nicklaus, Norman, etc. There were several were major stars that everyone who was even a casual fan knew.  It didn't matter that the didn't win every time, but there were several who were clearly at the top of the game and some of them were at least in contention each tournament.

Then when Tiger was at his best, I watched it all the time because it was clear that we were watching a once in a life-time talent and seeing the game played at its highest level.  It was like watching Michael Jordan play, you knew this was special.  But Tiger is not Tiger anymore, and who is there to really take his place?  That's golf's problem.

They want to boost up the young players and say "he's the next Tiger", but they're not.  They boost up Rory McIlroy, who is great, but then he'll go on stretches where he doesn't compete, and everyone turns it off again because it's clear he is not who golf said he was.  Then they promote the next player who will replace Tiger.  Now it's Jordan Spieth, who won yesterday and also won the Masters, but does he have the staying power?  That is yet to be seen.(Although he only won yesterday because another player let him win, and I won't use the "c" word for it.)

Golf either needs to find the next Tiger, the player who is going to dominate, so that golf tournaments will become must see viewing, or and ever better scenario would be to starting promoting a number of golfers (4-6) so that there are multiple faces and they are no longer dependent on just one player. Or, they can keep following the same path, which is downhill, and become an even more niche sport.

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