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Is the Ryder Cup bad for golf behavior?
By mustang6560 on 10/3/12
The Ryder Cup is truly a unique golf experience.

Unlike traditional golf tournaments where loud, obnoxious behavior is frowned upon, at the Ryder Cup, if you're not yelling unusual phrases liked "Mashed Potatoes" and cheering like you're watching your favorite football team trying to stop your rival football team on fourth and one, then you're considered a traitor.

But, is that behavior bad for golf? Michael Bamberger filed a post-Ryder Cup piece asking that very question. In his column, he uses Bubba Watson's and Ian Poulter's enthusiasm as example.
At a Ryder Cup, you wind up hearing more golf than you see. For every 60-year-old man out there with binoculars around his neck and a pairing sheet in his back pocket, a guy who can actually tell you how Match 2 stands and knows what AS stands for, there are a half-dozen twentysomethings wearing war paint like they're playing some arrested-adolescent version of Cowboys & Indians, yelling some ridiculous thing a split second after ball and club make contact.

It's sort of like when you're a teenager, just learning to drive, and you think that instant when the light turns green is your invitation to floor it. As you get older, you start to worry about other things, like speeding tickets and gas conservation. But the problem with youth, as the man said, is that it's wasted on the young.
If the first golf tournament a sports fan attends is the Ryder Cup, then s/he may get the wrong impression about golf. However, the majority of fans who attend the Ryder Cup are golf fans first, sports fans second, so letting them act a fool for one golf tournament a year is not going to ruin golf. Sure, we're moving full speed ahead into a time and place where poor behave is more and more tolerated (which is not a good thing), but I don't think we need to try curtail the spirit of the Ryder Cup because it may lead to fans to become more vocal at The Masters or any other professional golf tournament.

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[ comments ]
Thommo8110 says:
You are spot on with your comments. Just returned from the 'Miracle at Medinah' and the amount of USA fans that were ignorant of golf rules and etiquette was unbelievable. As for the 'get in the water' or 'chunk it' were disgraceful. Well done to the magnificent european team, especially Ian Poulter, an awesome competitor.
10/4/12
 
Gordon 1955 says:
After every one of Team USA's shots during the Ryder Cup, you could guarantee that at least one beer-fuelled idiot in the crowd would break the post-shot silence by shouting "Get in the hole!"

This is now (sadly) a common cry at major golf tournaments in America, to the immense irritation of rational-minded people everywhere.

This is something that I hope stays in America. It might have ben funny when it was first said (years ago!) but it is now teeth grindlingly awful. Almost as bad as those that can only chant three letters (U-S-A) which incidentally seems to get louder as the beer flows. Just as well the European players kept the crowd silent on the final day as they romped home winners.
10/6/12
 
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