With the news that 16-year-old Tadd Fujikawa is turning pro, as well as this interesting Mike Sorensen Deseret Morning News piece on Utah's Finau brothers taking the plunge (thanks to reader Warren), I continue to wonder what it is beyond the obvious lure of money that is encouraging kids to make a decision that so rarely ends well.
Is it the success of Morgan Pressel and Paula Creamer?
Does technology allow them to play a certain game that 16-year-olds weren't capable of just a few years ago?
Is it mostly that the people around them hoping to cash in?
Or is it the rule change that allows juniors and amateurs to receive free equipment?
I've had several college coaches tell me hair-raising stories about club company reps and how pervasive their role is in amateur golf. Since amateurs have become eligible to receive free equipment, we have seen an unusual number of top juniors skip college to cash in, with few success stories.
Does anyone else see the correlation, or is this simply a matter of golf catching up with other big time sports?