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Thursday
Oct052017

NY Fans Files: Audrey Leishman Laments Boorish Presidents Cup Behavior

The wife of Marc and survivor of a near-death experience is also a wonderful writer. Sadly, she had to take to her blog to share observations about dreadful fan behavior at the Presidents Cup.

Her post was validated by International player Anirban Lahiri and is yet another warning sign that there may need to be limits on crowd size and alcohol sales when the Ryder Cup comes to Bethpage in 2024.

There were many times last week that I thought about what the kids were seeing. The crowds booing for good shots and cheering for missed putts.  The drinking at 7am? Screaming “Big Easy” to Ernie Els and begging for his autograph and then yelling at his players. Heckling a wife for her beauty and then her husband for his play. I was thankful my boys weren’t there to see the way people were treating their daddy. Their hero. My parents could simply turn the television off.

Leishman also takes issue with some of the language used by players in describing what they wanted to do to the International team, and also calls out analysts for excessive language invoking massacres and other ugly scenes for a simple golf exhibition.

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Reader Comments (56)

Sadly so many younger fans have no filter. they cannot or will not distinguish the proper place to curtail their four letter words, nor do they understand when something crosses a line.

If kids are present, there seems to be *some* filtering, but with tickets thru the roof for this event, i doubt there were many kids to be seen. ten there is the ''women present'' idea- an old idea as many young women are just as bad as the men.

i am not against foul language, as a former oilfield, tugboat, construction worker, I get cussing up a storm, and i use it-- but not at the wrong time, dammit.

Apologies to Mark's wife: maybe the pairings sheet could offer a course in manners. I have called for a Citizenship class in schools for over 30 years, since parents are not giving their kids a lesson in manners, basically the same thing.

dig
10.5.2017 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth
There should be no alcohol sales at Bethpage, those people have shown before that they are idiots and the beer just makes it worse, You want to drink? go to a bar and be stupid there, not on the course.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterBogey
The fans are the problem, but players are the solution. Long before the competition, the host team needs to establish that LOUD is acceptable, but boorish is not, and they (members of the host team) will gladly call out spectators who are not acting in a sporting manner and insist that they be removed from the grounds. Although the boors will resent this -- and legally I hope there's a way to enforce the practice -- I still believe that the majority of the crowd would support a return to civility.

As for the booze, well, more creative minds than mine need to address this. If alcohol were banned, profits might plummet, but would attendance decline, too? And how does the revenue from concessions compare with that of broadcast rights? Hey, a generation or two ago, who would've thought that public smoking could be reduced so dramatically?
10.5.2017 | Unregistered Commenter3foot1
Our crowds have always been a boorish disgrace -aided by the powers that be being fine with it. Brookline especially was an embarrassment to real golf fans.
Limit the crowd and ban alcohol is the obvious start..of course that would mean someone isn't filling their pockets.
God forbid we ever have it resemble the Walker Cup where everyone actually behaves like civilized human beings.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered Commenterjjshaka
The only way to stop this is for all the other fans to roundly condemn him on the spot, and point offenders out for prompt removal. Isn't that why it doesn't happen at Augusta ? Maybe sell tickets with at refundable deposit of $100 extra, refundable to all except those that are kicked out during the course of the event.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterBrianS
I have met the Leishmans at a golf course on the Eastern Shore of VA and they are lovely people...and Audrey is spot on regarding the ugly behavior of 'patrons' at the PC....as a NYer it is a complete embarrassment...and these antics are repeated here weekly at local NFL games (total sh*t shows during the pregame parking lot parties and it continues on inside the MetLife)...a lot of the guilty parties at the PC are not true golf fans but guys just out looking for another sporting event or 'happening' to attend where they can get jacked-up all day on beers....many of the camera shots showed guys near tees and greens with their hats on backward and drinking the King-size beers in the can (not the 16oz size but I think 24oz) and some could be seen along the ropes chewing their dip and spitting into an empty can in the other hand....the whole scene was just an ugly zoo and reminded me of past Tour, PGA, and USGA events in the metro NY area......and one last thing, the players themselves also need to back of on the F-bombs after poor shots....there are mics and cameras everywhere that pick up every sound and conversation and the pros know this...we all see it and hear it clearly....look, as digs said, we all curse at times but there are some places where restraint is needed.....whatever the solution is, these NY area events need to be cleaned up and I think the USGA has the next opprotunity at Shinnecock.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterKeith - NYC
Good Luck with this...getting the morons out of sport events seems to be a neverending issue...Augusta seems to be the only place - in any sport - that stays civil. While I'd like to single out just NYC fans, it happens all over the world, at all different events. Everyone has a hand in it, from the media promoting the event, to the players wanting to 'crush them'...as bad as the coverage is, leave me in front of my TV rather than in the midst of that zoo.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterBDF
This is the reason I no longer attend PGA events; that and the crowds are just too big. I live a mile away from Liberty National and didn't go.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered Commenterjerseychris
Keith-
The last NFL game I attended was at the old Candlestick Park during a playoff game....5 people were passed out within 10 yards of my seat by the 2nd quarter..
Never again.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered Commenterjjshaka
It is embarrassing, PGA event in the US (not just NY/NJ) are unbearable.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterPaul
Growing the game...
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterBig Ed Mustafa
The most appreciative crowds in history must have been the ones at the Scandinavian Masters in Sweden in the early to mid-90s. We’d get 25.000 people on the course each day, about 60% of whom newly-turned-on golf junkies who didn’t know how good tour pros really were and who cheered like crazy at greenside bunker shots stopping 10 feet from the hole. John Daly was off in the first group at 7 AM Saturday in ‘95, and was greeted by 2.000 spectators around the first hole. His look was priceless. At the same event, grumpmeister Colin Montgomerie got beat by Jesper Parnevik, but still stayed for the prize ceremony to give a speech on what a lovely experience he had had. That’s where I’m coming from, and that’s why I’m saddened (although not surprised) by reading this piece. Things could be better. They used to be.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterHawkeye
Until they start throwing out all the morons shouting "mashed potatos" or "bababooey" there will be no end in sight to the awful crowds. I'm with Poulter on this one: bring on the tasers!
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterElChapin
@Hawkeye - They don't match those numbers, but I've been to a bunch of LPGA events, and I have never seen even one out of line fan. No drunken 25-35 (or so) guys in attendance, and just about everyone there is a golf fan. At the right course (for example, the Seaside course in NJ that they use at the Shopright event) you can get really close to the players, it is a great experience. If anything, the fans are too polite in that sometimes you feel awkward in cheering a great shot.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterBrianS
As someone who enjoys a few cool ones I'm always shocked at the excessive drinking when attending golf's major championships, and that includes the Masters. It starts early in the morning and it's not just the hardcore drinkers or ones one might expect to see drinking. I'm also astounded by the amount of women, or young ladies, who are also partaking in these activities. (Please, no Cam Newton comments)
10.5.2017 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
The fans are a disgrace and the host agency is flaccid in enforcing sportsmanship. It's a joke. If behavior is bad, the site should be removed from further events.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterStreaky Putter
As much as some of the accountability for poor behavior is with the fans, isn’t there also some onus of responsibility for the players, from both sides, to lead by example? Seems like all the team events in both men’s and women’s golf are now full of over the top celebrations, crowd taunting, etc. Have to think that when the players behave that way it also adds further fuel for the crowd to behave that way as well. Obviously great shots, especially at key times in match, should be celebrated. However that low-key response/smile when a shot goes in - a la Nicklaus - just seems so much classier than a running/uncoordinated chest bump…
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterRichie Rich
It's indicative of the times in which we live. However, families and friends of competitors should've learned to grow thicker skin long ago.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterFC
Abusive and threatening language should never be allowed but I'm afraid the ship has sailed on just random profanity. As someone who interacts pretty regularly with what are called 'millenials' it is pretty amazing the language they use casually in front of strangers or authority figures. I'm hardly a prude but I have a pretty good filter and sense of place and I can safely say I have never sworn in any public setting or business meeting. But with the younger generation when called on it they just say 'oh it's just words' or something like that.

So you mix that type of thinking with copious amounts of alcohol and you will get lots of bad language.

The coarsening of our society marches onward.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterGriffin
Digs - were you constructing tugboats in the oilfields? That's specialized work.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead
It ain't just the good ol' USA. The European crowds are pretty nasty when we play over there. Basically, people suck.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered Commentermrs havercamp
What's wrong with "bloomin' onion"? Is that considered Orientalism?
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterMichael Moore
I hadn't been to Angels Stadium in a good 20 years, and got some tickets for the Yankees game last summer...took my son. We spent most of the game walking around (he's really bored by baseball...as am I now, despite being a huge fan until I was about 25).

What struck me was that the entire stadium seemed designed to sell beer... a different "craft" brew every section it seemed, plus large bar type areas, and then of course your mixed drink/hard alcohol kiosks.

How the teams expect their fans to drive sober afterwards is a true mystery.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterManku
@Bogey with funniest post of the decade!
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterBud
Agree Brian S, another reason to make the Presidents Cup a mixed event, I hadn't thought of.

A problem with the PC is the International team is a mish mash of players with a variety of backgrounds world wide.
With the Ryder Cup the Europeans all played in Europe till they were, say, 20 and still able to be "moulded". The team aspect of the Ryder and Solheim Cups cannot be imitated. Bring on the new Presidnets Cup format.
Hawkeye

The crowds in Sweden were always fantastic - young kids everywhere, enthusiastic,big and dressed as brightly as the Scots were muted.
It wouldn't have entered the heads of any of them ever to yell out anything stupid - let alone 'get in the water'
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterMike Clayton
Whilst I didn't attend this presidents cup because I live in Australia, from what I saw on tv was absolutely disgraceful. I attended the 2011 PC at Royal Melbourne and watched replays on tv and didn't see anything like the appalling behaviour that took place in NJ. The internationals regularly had to step away from address due to heckling. Some of the cries from the crowd had me in disbelief, like, "get in the water" and loud celebration of bad shots and missed putts were astounding. The general attitude of what was probably just a few bad eggs that aren't real golf fans, but pissed up "patriots", was to use intimidation and distraction to upset the rhythm and confidence of the international team. I understand that you're inevitably going to get some wankers at a team sporting event and I've seen it myself at Australian PGA major events. But I've also seen those same people reprimanded by other spectators and marshalls. Why that didn't happen in NJ is beyond my comprehension.
But I also have to say that I think some of the behaviour from the US team was unsportsmanlike. Audrey already addressed Daniel Berger's comments, but I also couldn't believe some of the over the top celebrations by the IS team when a long putt was made or someone chipped in when the hole was still live and in play. I'm all for the excitement of the guys high fiving and chest bumping and celebrating enthusiastically when someone makes a clutch putt or something else impressive. It creates a great atmosphere and shows how important the event is to them. But if your opposition still has an opportunity to win or halve the hole, it's not appropriate to run across the green and chest bump and scream at the top of your lungs. By all means have a fist bump and a high five but going over the top is unsporting.
The USGA and hosting clubs needs to grow some balls and immediately evict anyone that misbehaves. It's a small minority, but a vocal one that turn cheering and jeering at a gentlemans game into something that you'd expect to see at football or wrestling. Otherwise the point will come where the Europeans and internationals will just refuse to play in the US.
10.5.2017 | Unregistered CommenterAussiewhackf
And that last gentleman's comments are exactly what this is all about.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterStephen W
Right up front I'll agree that some of the crowds were out of control but has no one here every watched a Ryder Cup event in Europe? Like the US has cornered the market on fans who drink early and shout inappropriate things at the wrong time?

Boo hoo.

This idea that the US crowds are all drunkards who yell inappropriate things and the Euro crowds are just sober, polite gentleman who walk around talking about the history of this great game...is a joke. Just stop it.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterMC
I don't think anyone here is saying the general European behaviour is fault-free, but we've yet to get to the obscene level of the American drunk yet. Oddly I thought the behaviour of the crowd at the last RC the worst I've ever seen, and I've been to a few. When players have to continually back off, wives are abused and spat at, foreigners with Euro flags threatened...that's just the way it is. France will be a marked difference to Hazeltine.

The Swedes don't really do drunken boorish behaviour until August and they are in Spain - then watch out.

Awaiting Scott in 3-2-1...
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterCenter Cut
For some reason NYC "fans" believe it to be their inalienable right to be part of the contest and to be a part of the outcome. Add alcohol and the result is reflux inducing for true fans. Certainly not an indictment on all the fans but the whole "a few bad apples" saying is most apropos....
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterCroDad
New York City -- and its sports fans -- are terribly overrated. Always have been. Not knowledgeable, reasonable or respectful.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterDrew Scott
“I mean the goal from the minute we got out here was to just crush them as bad as we can and, um, I hope that we close them out today and we go out tomorrow and just beat ’em even worse.” -Daniel Berger

I believe I have a new favorite golfer!
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterScott Perez
Go it right Drew.

I'm from here and spent 2 days at PC. I was checking out the crowd and it was mixed. Being 150 to get in, 10 beers and 100 shirts was curious to see who'd attend. Had you fair share of idiots. Some were talking to the players on the tee box like they knew them and saying stupid stuff - DJ where's your hot wife.

Yet the International fans, the guys all dressed in yellow, they get loud but it's all in a fun and respectful manner. And that's what I was looking to see at a PC which is so different than any Tour event. And seeing the whole team, carts, et all for the clinching point by Berger - that was cool. Can't believe Berger made that punk statement.

If it was at Plainfield or Ridgewood maybe wouldn't have been as bad and probably get more of the serious golf fan. Balty for the PGA last summer wasn't bad. But LN is a small property with tight walking inbetween holes and you hear everything.

If Mrs. Leishman thought this was rough, go to a Jets game. She'd never go to a sporting event ever again!

But it's the world we live in today and moral, character and respect are at an all time low. Add in a NY crowd and it's worse. Wouldn't be as bad in a St Louis or the like.

Look out Bethpage and RC. Wow, they may want to screen who they sell tix too. That may be like a Jets game.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterPaul
Go it right Drew.

I'm from here and spent 2 days at PC. I was checking out the crowd and it was mixed. Being 150 to get in, 10 beers and 100 shirts was curious to see who'd attend. Had you fair share of idiots. Some were talking to the players on the tee box like they knew them and saying stupid stuff - DJ where's your hot wife.

Yet the International fans, the guys all dressed in yellow, they get loud but it's all in a fun and respectful manner. And that's what I was looking to see at a PC which is so different than any Tour event. And seeing the whole team, carts, et all for the clinching point by Berger - that was cool. Can't believe Berger made that punk statement.

If it was at Plainfield or Ridgewood maybe wouldn't have been as bad and probably get more of the serious golf fan. Balty for the PGA last summer wasn't bad. But LN is a small property with tight walking inbetween holes and you hear everything.

If Mrs. Leishman thought this was rough, go to a Jets game. She'd never go to a sporting event ever again!

But it's the world we live in today and moral, character and respect are at an all time low. Add in a NY crowd and it's worse. Wouldn't be as bad in a St Louis or the like.

Look out Bethpage and RC. Wow, they may want to screen who they sell tix too. That may be like a Jets game.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterPaul
@Center Cut: Regrettably true, that. I believe there are signs outside bars on the Mediterranean coast saying ”Dogs and Swedes not allowed”.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterHawkeye
Slowing the game. Thanks a lot, drunk assholes.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterSclaff & Foozle
Hawkeye, Australians can't lecture on bad behaviour abroad - Bali during what is known as 'Schoolies Week' sounds horrific. And I was in Ibiza a few weeks back and had to assist a collapsed Danish kid off of a pedestrian crossing after too much partying / drugs. Like all things, if you wish to avoid the arseholes, just don't go looking for them.

New York...meh. Decent pizza, shitty weather, full of wankers.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterCenter Cut
The drunk fan narrative is true at all sporting events. NFL, Euro soccer, RC.

The question is how to deal with it without actually banning alcohol. One option would be your ticket would have a place to punch holes for every adult beverage bought. Then, when your ticket reached that max, 2, 4, whatever is decided, you don't get any more. Minors when entering would have all their spots punched at the gate.

Yes, some tea totalers could sell or give their punches away, but it wouldn't be enough to make a huge difference, me thinks.

I was at RC last year. It didn't seem out of hand with profanity and my experience with the Euro fans was fabulous. Besides who could get drunk on $9 warm beer? Not me! But, having said that, there were plenty of drunk people there.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterSportsDoc
Get drunk all you want ... fine. Just don't act like it. It's called good manners.
10.6.2017 | Unregistered CommenterSclaff & Foozle

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