A Thread for Contrarian Takes


#1

Mine:

  1. Trinity Forest is too wide and was boring to watch.
    a. I didn’t feel like there was any penalty off the tee. I know people will scream (angles!) but I will argue that pros hit it so high, so far, and with so much spin that it negates this argument.
    b. TF seems like it would be really fun to play and I think more courses should be built like it. But for pro events, I want to see courses where 67 is a great score.

  2. Par is much more than a number.
    a. I saw a lot of people arguing this in defense of Erin Hills last year. Sorry, but it sucked. The U.S. Open should not turn into the PGA Championship 2.0 . They shoot -10 to -20 every other week of the year.

  3. Trees add a lot to certain courses. They make the players hit a lot of different shots off the tee and punishes them for being out of position.

Any other contrarian takes? Any rebuttals?


#2

I’ll go in on #1. Trees were never really supposed to be a part of the game. That all kind of got hot when the game crossed the pond.

My Contrarian Take:
The whole “these guys are such bettter athletes these days” angle is bullshlt. Doughy winners like Kizzire, Reed, Potter Jr and Pat Perez all make Kenny Perry look like Tony Horton.


#3

In light of -23 taking honors this week:

Committees are playing it so safe on course setup, and I have a feeling (haven’t checked data) that this year is a very low year scoring wise for the tour in general. TF looked like it would be tough if weather became an issue, but you can’t get links like weather in Dallas, unfortunately. I don’t know what to think about courses whose defense is weather. Especially landlocked courses. I was at Erin Hills, weather was perfect Saturday / Sunday, course was obliterated by guys.

I also think the telecast was reaching a ton this week to play up trinity forest more than it was showing, in fact at one point Faldo started naming other C&C courses in the spirit of “man THAT one would really be great” in an effort to save face. I think the course was very cool and love seeing these types of higher end courses get airtime, but something fell flat this week on it.


#4

I don’t get the love for links golf in these parts. Give me tree-lined courses any day.


#5

I lived just west of Dallas for 5 years, I can tell you that it was incredibly odd for the wind to only blow 1 day and not even that bad, and scores were definitely much harder to come by that day . The course was obviously set up by the Tour with fear of player outcry, everyone with knowledge of day to day conditions of Trinity Forrest said as much, to include the designer. I enjoyed seeing something different and it looked much better on tv than I thought it would. Hopefully next year they let the course play as it was intended to and the wind blows more. Links courses normally get torn apart by pros if there is a lack of wind, it’s still enjoyable to get a change in the week to week courses we see 30-40 times a year.


#6

Rebuttal:

  1. Mostly agree. I was very bored watching and do think width and angles gets a little overblown and doesn’t suit the pro game well. If you don’t make guys sweat off the tee, they just wind up firing at every flag and it becomes less interesting. They play a totally different style of golf and that needs to be accounted for. I also don’t think the conditions helped very much.

  2. Disagree. I do think par is irrelevant and don’t really care how low they go. Conditions and courses are highly variable and it is what it is, at the end of the week.

  3. Agree and disagree. As you suggest, courses need some sort of defense out there. Oakmont, for example, gets away with having very little trees because they have narrow fairways, bunkers, and penal rough. It works for them. On the other hand, some courses look terrible with narrow chutes, lined by nothing but trees, and demanding certain shot shapes. I think there are ways to entice players into certain shots without forcing it with trees.

Contrarian(-ish) takes:

  • Golf architecture purists are bad for the game. Yeah, I know that may be controversial here but the beauty of golf is courses are designed by a variety of minds and personalities, both good and bad. Width and angles is not the end all, be all, of golf architecture. Not every course needs to have variety and strategy for every shot, it’s ok for a course to be target golf. It might be weird to say but golf needs more Coore/Crenshaw and also more terrible Nicklaus or Player designs to drag down the average and mix it up a bit. We don’t need all our courses to be the same.

  • Equipment changes for pros are overrated. Why do we give them a year-long grace period to adjust? It’s really not that hard to do. Hit the range hard for a couple days or weeks and figure it out. It’s like if I told my boss that my performance is going to dip for a year because I got a new mouse and keyboard.

  • The PGA Tour has a personality problem. Listening to more podcasts with LPGA players and those chicks are interesting, funny and entertaining. I don’t know if it’s because sponsorship money gets thrown in and PGA guys just start toeing the company line more but holy hell are they boring.


#7

#11 at Augusta is easy.


#8

Staff bags serve no purpose and should not exist.


#9

Nobody is good enough, tour pros included, to consistently play to and edge of the fairway (for a proper angle) when they try.


#10

Aaron Wise looks like the hypothetical love child of Chucky Three Sticks and Ethan Hawke.


#11

Isn’t this the point of risk in the game?


#12

Just because they were not originally part of the game, does that mean they should be axed from every course? I like playing tree-line courses. And for the pro game, I think they add penalty and allow for some amazing recovery shots.


#13

Re; Trees:

I think the game has evolved on its own based on where its played geographically. Just because golf in many places in the contemporary United States does not look as it was played towards the early 20th century in Scotland, does not make it incorrect


#14

Obsessing over someone’s “perfect swing” is dumb. There is so much more that goes into the game and winning.

Every week they slow down Adam Scott’s swing and gush over it - meanwhile Jim Furyk has more majors and wins and has shot a 59.

It creates a ridiculous standard for the average golfer or someone trying to learn to tune in and hear the announcers shit on anyone that has a non conventional swing.

Paul Azinger’s pod was great because he made the point that at this point with 30+ years of video tech, no 2 swings are the same.


#15

For most weeks, I don’t care how low they go. I just hope the U.S. Open sticks to its traditional identity. It’s fun to watch when the rough is long, fairways are narrow, and the winning score is -1.


#16

Jordan Spieth is overrated. A lot of people consider him to be on the path to become an all-time great. But this is only due to him being arbitrarily good at one golf course, and it just happens to be the one that the casual viewer cares about most.

Don’t get me wrong, he has had an amazing career so far, but his star is inflated because he, like many other golfers, tend to play better at ANGC than other golf courses. Look at a guy like Charlie Hoffman, who rarely competes in majors and has 4 wins in his 20+ year career. Yet he is always on the leader board on the weekend. Or Angel Cabrera, who has 6 top 10s at the Masters, include his 09 victory and a playoff loss in 2013 - which is shocking considering his overall resume. Bubba Watson is another one - a really good player, who’s career resume is going to be inflated because ANGC happens to fit his eye. Some guys, regardless of talent level, arbitrarily excel at ANGC.

How would we view Hideki Matsuyama if the Phoenix Open (2 wins and a runner-up) was considered a Major? Would we all be salivating over Daniel Berger if TPC Southwind (wins in 2017 and 2016) was a major?

Jordan Spieth is a good player, who will go down as an all-time great because he, like many before him, happen to be arbitrarily good at the course we care about most.


#17

I do think the US Open needs to embrace their role and stop trying to appease the players who complain. Those guys are mental midgets and won’t compete anyways. Just make the whole tourney hard as hell and admit as much. No one cares if it’s just one week, we just want to see a bloodbath.


#18

10+ pga wins
3-4 of the grand slam, 2nd place at the 4th one.
Fed Ex Cup winner
Rookie of the year
Tour Player of the year

24 years old


#19

He has 11 wins over a 5 year span. That is more PGA Tour wins then Sergio Garcia. Not including current players well past their prime (Els, Leonard, Furyk, Duval), he is T-8 with Bubba for most wins by any current player on tour - in only 5 years! Oh and he is 3/4 the way to the grand slam. Spieth is properly rated.


#20

We are talking about TPC Deere Run, right? The only course he has multiple wins at.

I don’t know how a 14 win, 3 major, 24 year old can possibly be overrated but it’s a good effort to try and say as much.