I finally get the whole LPGA's learn-to-speak-English-or-you're-outta-here mess. The writing was on the wall and I missed it.
Carolyn Bivens is using it to distract us from the fact that anywhere from 6-9 events are in serious trouble or doomed. Check out what she told Christine Brennan of the USA Today, who supports the LPGA's policy plans:
"A pro-am is largely responsible for making LPGA events possible," Commissioner Carolyn Bivens said in a phone interview Wednesday. "It is the single largest source of revenue for a tournament. There are no domestic TV rights fees. This is our oxygen. It's that important. As recently as the past two weeks, I've had tournament directors tell me they are getting complaints (about international players who cannot speak enough English to talk to their pro-am partners). We have to be aware of that, because we've had sponsors who say they have had a bad time and might pull out because of it. That's our reality."
So the sponsors are fleeing not because the economy is in the toilet or because it's too expensive for them to support an event or they don't like their new date on the tour. They are fleeing because their pro-am experience isn't what they thought it would be.