More USGA Groove Spin

The USGA has posted two more reports on why U-grooves need to be banned. One report, the "Long Rough Height Report," is a reply to former USGA technical director Frank Thomas's suggestion that they should just grow more rough because after 4 inches of the thick stuff, grooves don't matter. They have now proven Frank wrong! Oh joy!

The second report titled Reductio ad Absurdium PGA Tour Skill Rankings features all sorts of fancy graphs and charts about how driving accuracy means nothing to finish in the top 10 on the PGA Tour money list. After a cursory reading, I could not find one reference or even an acknowledgement of the role narrowed fairway widths have possibly played in chipping away at driving accuracy statistics.

I suppose that would make a big mess of the premise.

What I find most fascinating with both reports is the USGA's astounding determination to protect the integrity of rough. They are willing to ask every golfer to change out their U-grooved clubs so that rough, a cancer upon the game which has only been introduced and harvested through the years to quell distance gains, is preserved.

Meanwhile, a ball rollback would bring distances back in line with the existing architecture of thousands of courses, allowing for the integrity of a course design to be restored via width and shot values. Rough would be a minor part of the game, used on courses looking to save money on maintenance.

Instead, the governing body of North American golf appears willing to do just about anything to preserve a non-architectural element that only adds time to rounds and misery for most golfers. For the good of the game?