Boo Weekley: "Honestly, this wraparound season sucks. It does, seriously."

Why provide commentary when I can just let Boo Weekley do all the heavy lifting? He's teeing it up as defending runner-up in the Sanderson Farms Championship and needs to make a nice check to offset the inevitable fines for conduct becoming of an honest PGA Tour member.


Q. How have you come to view the wraparound season and the importance of trying to get out to a big jump in the fall?

BOO WEEKLEY: Honestly, this wraparound season sucks. It does, seriously.

Q. It's long?

BOO WEEKLEY: It's just, it's stupid. I still ain't figured out this FedEx -- what does this FedExCup stuff do? It ain't doing nothing, but it is what it is. It's supposed to be the players tour. It's Tim Finchem and them's tour is what it is.

It's aggravating having to play this much, but yet it's important to come out and try to get a good start. I mean, it's good for the rookies, I think. It gives them something they can up can out and get their feet wet before they actually get into the bigger tournament. I think that's a good thing.

Q. Does it just feel like a warn out extension?

BOO WEEKLEY: It's just golf after golf after golf. Ain't no time for hunting and fishing, man. You know, you've got to come in here and bring my rods over here to go fishing, but you can't go fishing because you get out there and next thing you know somebody's aggravating you, and you can't actually enjoy going fishing.

New R&A Chief, Finchem Say Distance Issue Not An Issue

The R&A's Martin Slumbers and PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem, speaking at the HSBC Golf Business Forum, made clear they are not the least bit interested in doing a thing about distance increases.

So much for those hoping Slumbers would reverse the course of Peter Dawson, who said things were holding steady as he ordered "The Treatment" on all Open rota courses to mask his organization's fear of doing something meaningful.

No doubt this gibberish, quoted by Doug Ferguson AP notes colum, was followed by speeches about the need for sustainability to keep the game healthy. Hard to do when 8000 yards becomes the norm.

"What we are seeing at the moment is a fairly consistent percentage of some tremendous athletes who are hitting the ball farther," Slumbers said at the HSBC Golf Business Forum. "The percentage of them is unchanged. The average is a lot less than what the media talk about. The average has only moved 3 to 4 yards in the last 10 years. There's no burning desire on our part to make any changes."

We knew about the burning desire part, but to say players are hitting it farther and then say they are not according to the average, is an inconsistency even Peter Dawson never let slip.
at least made clear he's all about the PGA Tour.

"I do think if we get to a point where 75 percent of the field is hitting it where Dustin [Johnson] is and it gets a little boring, and we see signs of it affecting the integrity of the sport, it's a different matter," Finchem said. "Right now, I agree totally. We shouldn't do anything."

Slumbers also said distance "isn't getting out of control."

"It's a single-digit number of players who hit over 320 [yards]," he said. "The average is in the mid-280s -- this is run and carry. As long as it stays within those parameters, I'm celebrating skill."


South Africa Balks At $29 Million Presidents Cup Price?

In his Golf World I Think, I Saw, I Heard notes, Tim Rosaforte says the PGA Tour blew a chance to return the Presidents Cup to South Africa in 2019 where Ernie Els would be perfectly aligned to captain.

You'll be learn that it was all about the money for the Finchem administration.

Rosaforte says the PGA Tour asking price was $29 million to hold the cup, South Africa balked, and Australia will be ponying up $25 million to host the Cup as well as next year's World Cup.

Commissioner Finchem: "Everybody talks about playing faster; that doesn’t make a lot of sense.”

As Commissioner Moonbeam enters the final two years of his reign heading the PGA Tour, we've officially enter the weird phase where he randomly says things that remind you it's time to start spending more time counting his millions.

Rex Hoggard quotes the Commish talking about the oddity of Team USA's Ryder Cup foursomes woes even as they dominate in Presidents Cup foursomes. The talk turned to how nice it would be if more foursomes was played in the U.S., in part because rounds are faster when played that way (not to mention it serves as a great social round). Great stuff!

But then the Commish just couldn't leave well enough alone...

To Finchem, however, the endless quest to make the game faster – even at the highest levels where it took more than five hours last week to play a round at the WGC-HSBC Champions … in threesomes – is akin to making molehills out of mountains.

“If you go to Augusta or Pine Valley or Cypress Point and you’re playing with some single-digit handicaps how long does it take you to play? Four hours,” he answered. “If it’s 4:15 (hours) or 4:20, you’re going to worry about shaving 10 minutes off [a round]? It’s not a driving factor. Everybody talks about playing faster; that doesn’t make a lot of sense.”

This is true Commissioner, when you and your golf cronies play a once-in-a-lifetime course, why yes, you aren't in a hurry, but since that represents .01% of the rounds played in America, you have merely confirmed you've been in the bubble just a bit too long!

Couple this with his unspoken edict blocking your rules staff from issuing slow play penalties, and it really has become clear that Tim Finchem is the enemy of speeding up rounds.

Commish Open To Foursomes Play At...Monday Pro-Ams!

Leave it to Commissioner Tim Finchem to, like most things, almost-but-not-quite get it right when it comes to something golf-related. This time it's the topic of Team USA's lousy play in Ryder Cup foursomes.

Alex Miceli reports that Finchem was not asked to be on the PGA of America task force Task Force, but sees a "silver lining" in our lousy foursomes play as a way to introduce the format to more Americans who do not understand why UK golfers enjoy playing a faster way. If only he could have stopped there...

“One of the silver linings on these things would be if foursomes golf could develop some traction in the U.S. We are strapped for (open) weeks,” said Finchem, who acknowledged the possibility of “a little side event” that could include foursomes.

Dare I mention restoration of the old Tuesday PGA Tour practice round exhibitions...oh right, we close the course on PGA Tour Championship Management Tuesdays now. Sorry, go on...

Finchem also mentioned the possibility of a special Monday pro-am that would feature a pro and amateur paired in foursomes.

“There are things you can do,” Finchem conceded. “I think that should be an area of focus.”

Ah yes, an alternate shot Monday pro-am with a PGA Tour player and a 15 handicapper is going to button things up for Team USA going forward! Yep, that'll really help! There is that one problem of Monday pro-ams being a place that most Ryder Cuppers tend to not be seen.

Opportunities! PGA Tour Trying To Help Its Starving Millennials

Debatable is the pure genius it took to commit golf to an exhausting, annoying, neverending wraparound schedule at the expense of the common sense that says every entertainment product needs to go away for a bit. Not debatable was the new calendar year's schedule's discrimination against younger players and the PGA Tour's ever-expanding list of medical exemptions clogging fields each week.

But as Rex Hoggard reports, the PGA Tour has listened to their critics and is working hard to expand fall fields and lessen the role of the medicallty exempt. This doesn't solve the problem of pro golf as a year-round enterprise that annoys in its persistence (especially compared to other sports), but it's at least a righting of the inequity that has arisen for up-and-coming players.

All told, the Tour has added up to 180 new playing opportunities next fall and the circuit’s moves have already started paying off. Last week in Las Vegas 13 more players from the Tour category received a spot in the field compared to last season and this week at Sea Island 25 more are on the tee sheet.

“We’re looking at everything to get more Tour guys into tournaments top to bottom,” Finchem said.

“We are doing some things and will watch it for a year or maybe two and see where it comes out.”

The Tour also plans to adjust the major medical exemption category to increase access for the Tour graduates. Beginning with the 2014-15 season, medical exemptions will be capped at three seasons unless there are “extreme circumstances” which should, over time, reduce a category that has grown to 14 players this season.