Player Impact Program

Discussion in 'Golf' started by Phall, Apr 23, 2021.

  1. Phall

    Phall Mentor

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2012
    Messages:
    763
    Location:
    Brooklyn
    The PGA Tour is implementing a new "bonus" system for its top players, who will be paid out of a $40 million annual purse. Ten golfers will be ranked and paid based on several factors including search engine queries and tv ratings while they're playing. The system will likely be imperfect, but its main purpose is apparently to quell any talks about "splinter leagues" where a few top players form their own group. Golf apparently has a shortlist of top stars that drive the majority of interest at any point in time. By guaranteeing each of them a base payout, they are that much less likely to seek their own opportunities.

    I don't follow golf at all and couldn't pick most pros out of a lineup. I'm curious about what the golf fans here think about this idea, since the concept can be applied to other sports. Do the star golfers command your interest more than the tradition and skill on display? Are there metrics you would use to measure "star power" other than what's been suggested by the PGA?

    Here's an example of a possible pratfall: I remember Payne Stewart specifically for his bloomers-and-plaid-socks combos. He obviously had a storied career, but that's what I find most memorable. If I was a mid-tier or below golfer on the pro circuit, I'm incentivized to make myself stand out more. Maybe I'll dress outlandishly, maybe I'll celebrate my shots wildly, or maybe I'll adopt some brash persona in public. When you're paying athletes for something other than their scores, this is what you're asking for.

    Of course, a lot of "star power" is completely manufactured by the media, as well. I don't know many NASCAR drivers, but Bubba Wallace sure did dominate the airwaves last year. And we all lived through the Tiger Woods hysteria, which is still kicking strong today.

    Other thoughts?
     
  2. Carolina Speed

    Carolina Speed Master

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2011
    Messages:
    3,813
    Phall. I've been trying to figure out how to respond to this "Player Impact Program" post. I'll just give you what I think about it, which isn't much. I don't really see the top players forming their own groups. I think that would be a risky thing to do as The PGA pays very well with winners getting over $1million dollars to win a tournament, there are some tournaments where even second place wins a million. Then they've incorporated over the last several years, "The Tour Championship" where the winner receives this year I believe a cool $15 million. Not to mention sponsorship pay has gone through the roof. Golfers make more from their sponsors than from actually playing. The top 150 golfers are paid very well.
    I do follow golf somewhat and know who most of the top 100 players are, but to be honest there are just a few who command serious interest. Jordan Spieth is my favorite to watch. I generally watch any tournament he's in and have followed his career. He's Christian and doesn't back away from his beliefs. Early in his career he was being interviewed after a tournament right around Christmas and the interviewer wished him "Happy Holidays" He responded by saying "Merry Christmas." I knew that I would like him after I saw that. Other golfers I follow are Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Rory McIIroy, Justin Thomas, Bryson DeChambeau to name a few. I also follow someone most here have never heard of. JT Poston is from close to where I live and he and one of sons were friends in college. He has won one PGA Tournament and is currently ranked number 83 in the world. So, yeah if one of these five or six are not in a tournament, I may not follow the tournament until Sunday or at all.
    John Daly was one that seemed to get the attention of many golf fans by antics on and off the golf course. When he was playing, I did follow him as well. Had this program been around in his heyday, he would have benefitted.

    Currently, there are a few golfers that received a little star power and haven't really done much to deserve it. Right now Tony Finau is the media darling and they just salivate when he's in contention. Hoping he'll finally break through and win a tournament. I guess because he's not white. I think he's won one PGA Tournament. In a not so competitive field. The Puerto Rico Open. He has finished runner up several times. When on the rare occasion he's in contention, he's treated almost Tigeresque. I haven't figured out why just yet. He does seem like a good person.
    In golf, if you win tournaments, especially Majors the star power and attention will take care of itself. I don't think you necessarily have to be outlandish. As I said about Spieth, he's doesn't really stand out physically, the way he dresses or his attitude. He seems like the guy the next door, but he won tournaments and Majors early and just has "it" as they say whatever "it" is. He has it.
    I don't know if I answered any of your questions. Only to say, I don't think much of this "Player Impact Program" personally, but wanted to respond.
     
  3. Flint

    Flint Mentor Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2016
    Messages:
    926
    One good thing about golf is that it pretty much driven by the market. Players don't have to mess around with "team" issues. They are playing for the money and no one questions it.
    The only worry I have about this system is that it might make it harder for new players to join the elite ranks. Pro's do stick around for a long time. At least until 50, unless you don't know how to drive a car. And sometimes a lot longer. Compare that to any other sport where they are done by 40.
     
  4. Phall

    Phall Mentor

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2012
    Messages:
    763
    Location:
    Brooklyn
    Thanks for the replies. The timing of this seems to coincide with the unsuccessful "Super League" of European club soccer teams. If you missed the overview, twelve top domestic league teams planned to set up their own competition to run simultaneously with their seasons. This would just replace the annual Champions League, which does the same thing, but cuts the pieces of pie smaller. World famous clubs like Arsenal, Manchester United, Tottenham, and Inter/AC Milan sometimes miss out on qualifying for the Champions League, the same way top golfers sometimes miss the cut. In the Super League, the initial 12 teams planned to offer 3 or 4 other teams from throughout Europe an invitation to join them each year.

    The USA really doesn't have any sporting equivalent because there just aren't a lot of inter-national competitions here. I guess an example would be the Dodgers, Cubs, Yankees, and Red Sox announcing that they would host their own playoffs to determine a Super Championship instead of participating in the run-up to the World Series. The analogy doesn't really work, but the idea is that more people would watch those franchises than some of the less popular matchups.
     

Share This Page