Shane Bacon, writer at Yahoo’s Devil Ball Golf as well as this fine site here joins the show to talk about the Ryder Cup, which is going on right now. Yes, for one more week of the year, golf is entirely relevant.
We start with a conversation on the FedExCup, which hasn’t been able to capture the audience you’d expect for a tournament full of big names that offers a $10 million prize. Is it too much money? Seriously, are people turned off by that big of a prize that the event has become more of a sideshow than the “fifth” major?
And why not amend the schedule so the FexExCup doesn’t land on the second or third week of the NFL season? End the major golf season on Labor Day weekend and it will have Sunday (and Monday) to itself without any NFL interference. Sure, it’s a holiday weekend, but it’s not an NFL weekend (yet).
(Note: this topic allows me to share my “sports on TV as snack foods” analogy that I’ve had for a while in which the NFL is potato chips, MLB is pretzels and the sports work their way down until sports like MLS are the pork rinds on the shelf: delicious to some, off-putting to many but clearly an acquired taste and something the masses will never purchase and consume every week. There might be more on this later).
We spin the conversation to the Ryder Cup. Bacon thinks the US, despite half the team being young, inexperienced and relatively anonymous, has a good chance to win.
We run down both rosters as I try to figure out exactly who the hell Jeff Overton is. And while Bacon said at the start of the show that I know more about golf than 95% of the writers out there (something I humbly appreciate) I swear I thought Ricky Barnes was on the team, not Rickie Fowler.
We also talk about swing changes. Tiger went through a famous swing change, twice, for basically no reason other than he was bored with winning so much. It worked for him in the past, but it hasn’t yet worked for Padraig Harrington. What’s the real point of a swing change — to prevent further injury, perhaps — especially after winning three major titles? Bacon, who is going through a swing change right now himself, talks about how players see others bombing drives down the fairway and feel it’s necessary to keep up with the young guns so they don’t get left behind. But what’s wrong with hitting driver, seven iron instead of driver pitching wedge, when a swing change to get that extra distance on the drive may see your ball spray all over the course for the better part of a year until it’s corrected. In Harrington’s case, it has yet to get corrected.
We do talk about Tiger, in the three-layers-down context of reading more stories complaining about the stories about Tiger than we’ve read actual stories about Tiger.
We also touch on Corey Pavin as a captain, and if his No Twitter policy is good for the event. Bacon jokes that he may be depriving us of a TwitPic of Mickelson and Woods playing ping pong which would be the greatest image in the history of golf. The world needs to see this happen. Someone tell Stewart Cink that he needs to record that video, wait until the Ryder Cup is over, then put it out in a week for the world to see.
We demand it.
Bacon and I look at the field and try to guess pairings, then prognosticate a winner.
Thanks for listening. Go USA.