I think we can all agree that when we are watching the PGA Tour, we are watching the highest level of professional golf we are likely to see. And that probably goes double for a major. Face it, the absolute worst player on the tour will still wipe the floor with most any of us. These guys are simply the best. So why is it that so many viewers need to have Tiger Woods there, or they’re not interested in watching? Is a large collective of most of the best players in the world not good enough?
Obviously, I’m referring to The Masters and the fact that Tiger Woods did not play due to surgery (as well as Mickelson not making the cut). The result? The lowest ratings for a Masters tournament since 1993. I wonder why this is? I get that he is certainly the most popular player in the game, as well as arguably still the best. But are that many people electing not to tune in if he’s not there? What about all of the other great golfers who are there? No love for Bubba? Fowler? McIlroy?
This is the reason why the PGA needs to do a better job of hyping more players on the tour. Once the most hyped player doesn’t participate, despite the fact he hasn’t won the tournament since 2005, too many people no longer care. So again, these are the greatest players in the world…but no one cares. When there’s an NFL game in which Tom Brady or Peyton Manning isn’t involved, people still watch, right? Why is it different for golf and golf tournaments? Take a look at the numbers. When you really look at final scores and the total number of strokes, the difference between first and thirtieth is only a matter of about three strokes per round. Is that really much of a difference form a skill level standpoint? I’m sorry, but it’s not. So what exactly do these so-called fans think they’re missing? It’s as if they are more caught up in the off-the-course Tiger hype than what he should be known for, which is golf.
Speaking of so-called fans, I saw an idiotic comment on another post proving my point. This person claims they would rather watch Tiger shoot 74 than a “no name guy” shoot 70. So basically you’re telling me, just because a specific golfer is playing, you would rather watch bad golf than a lesser named player having a better round? I’m sorry, but that means you are not a fan of the game.
If anything, this should be an eye opener for the PGA. After all, Tiger is not going to be around forever. And if this is a sign of things to come when he does decide to hang up his spikes, then the tour is going to be in some real trouble. They’d better get to work sooner rather than later.
Swing ’til you’re happy!