Even though it doesn't take a rocket surgeon to know that schedule congestion, motivational issues, format problems and overall spoiledness are the more likely culprits for male "grow the game" advocates skipping Rio, it's still nice to see someone finally call out the men passing on golf's spot in the Games.
Alan Shipnuck in this week's SI/golf.com roundtable:
The entitlement and point-missing among the top (male) golfers is depressing. They are on their way to getting their dying, boutique sport tossed from the biggest athletic happening in the world. Then they won’t have to worry about playing in the Olympics beyond 2020. A small win for these selfish players but a big loss for the sport to make new fans and reach new markets.
But we won't focus on all of the South Africans passing or grow-the-game advocate Rory McIlroy making a last minute decision not to go.
Because at least Sergio is all in, John Austin reports:
"There are some security issues there that I would like to be taken care of and the Zika virus is causing a few problems but I don't have immediate plans of having a family with my girlfriend.
"But if nothing else happens between now and when it is time to go then we should be fine."
Golf Digest's Undercover Pro tells Max Adler that while there are issues, the golfers who pass on Olympic golf will ultimately regret it. Or so he thinks.
If the games were in North America, Europe, many parts of Asia, Australia or New Zealand, athletes likely would make the trip. Instead, the IOC want to make statement by going to Rio for the first Olympiad in South America. And now the golfers are making their own statement.
Golf doesn’t need the Olympics, but the sport is willing to support the quadrennial games, if it makes sense.
The IOC, in turn, should be willing to support golf and not criticize its best players for making a thoughtful stand.