My Thoughts on the Masters

mulligan, 12 April 2006, Comments Off on My Thoughts on the Masters
Categories: Uncategorized

When I think of the Masters, I few things have always come to mind. First, the majesty and coverage of the tournament is different. Referring to Patrons instead of fans, the 2nd cut instead of the rough, never discussing the prize money, never showing the trophy presentation but just Butler Cabin where the winner receives his green jacket, these are all things that are different about the Masters. Second, the commercial coverage is very small, so CBS has the ability to show a ton of golf coverage. (56 minutes per hour) Third, the Masters has always been known for its back nine finishes or collapses. Jack in ’86. Norman in ’96.

However, over the past few years, the Augusta National Golf Club has been attempting to “update” the golf course so players will play the course as it was meant to be played. It has been well documented of the changes to Augusta and whether a “short” hitter could beat the “long” ballers. Regardless of whether Augusta National has now been “Tiger-proofed” or “updated”, this year, there was one thing that was truly missing. The back 9 finish.

As Young Tom Morris has discussed in some of his comments, I think the “Tiger-proofing” the golf course has taken away from the Masters experience instead of adding to it. As Young Tom Morris and I discussed last night, the Masters has always been fun because the players “go low” and you can see a back nine 30 to win. However, this year, the best I could find, on quick inspection, was a 33 on the back nine in the final round. Also, the excitement of Augusta was almost there when Olazabal got it to 5 under after 15, but that soon died when he bogied 16.

As we discussed, if we wanted to watch people struggle, we’d wait till the US Open. If we wanted to watch players play on golf courses which are “links” style in crazy weather conditions, the Open Championship is where it is at. And, the PGA is always fun because of the club pros involved. But, the Masters was always the way to start of the Majors. Low scoring, beautiful landscapes, and did I mention birdies all over the place.

Yes, Augusta National might have gotten what it wanted, someone not shooting 20-under par, but this year, the tournament was set up for “greatness.” And, because of the additional yardage, trees, and other adjustments to the golf course, the patrons at the course and patrons watching at home were deprived of something that makes the Masters special: The ability to go low, the ability to watch someone make a Sunday back nine charge, and the ability to not watch someone make bogey to win the tournament!!


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