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Everything posted by Czech_Mate

  1. Hello everyone. I just saw the list of the best golf courses you can play (public) in the US and I have played a few of them and I agree that they are great courses, but I am curious about other GREAT courses that you have played that will never make that list but are a must play if you are in the area. I am looking to hear about some truly great but underrated courses. I will throw out a course that everyone can play and in my opinion is about perfect in design and it has been maintained meticulously every time I have played. It is TPC Deere Run in Silvis, IL. I was working in the Quad Cities for a couple of months and I played it every chance I got. Not only is it a great course, but since I was playing as a solo I got paired up with another twosome or threesome each time. The course does have members but they allow the public to play and I was always paired up with members when I played. Every person I was paired up with was extremely nice and they truly appreciated their course and did what they could to make me feel just as at home as they were. The whole experience was awesome and everyone from the pro shop personnel to the servers to the grounds crew were very professional and accommodating and they were all gracious hosts. Perhaps all of that made the experience seem better but there is no doubt that this course is a must play. Watch the John Deere Classic this weekend. I am not sure if TV will capture the subtle nuances that make it so great but I will sure have a ton of nostalgia running through my veins this weekend!
  2. This is a very interesting topic and thanks to PMookie for getting it started on this thread. I think there is a long standing belief in golf that it is the only sport that we amateurs can play on the exact same venues that the pros do and use the same equipment that they do and I think that is pretty much true. Obviously we aren't playing the same course set up so its not exactly the same, but it is the same venue and it is damn fun being a part of it. I can clearly see both sides of this argument and I am sure that most people can and that is why this can be such a difficult problem to solve. Watching these guys hit shots that I would never be able to hit and then trying to judge how my best shots would compare to theirs is what I like best about watching golf, especially when you attend the event and watch it in person. I will never forget standing about 20 yards away when Martin Kaymer hit a 260+ yard 3 iron to the green at the 2014 US Open at Pinehurst. We can gauge how spectacular their talent really is and by this we are able to internalize just how damn good these guys are by directly comparing these shots to our best possible efforts and abilities. That makes it more fun to watch as a fan. However, I can see the other argument that smashing a drive and hitting a wedge into every par 4 is boring to watch and takes away some excitement and renders certain other skills and abilities obsolete. There is no better example of this than the short par 4's on tour. I love short par 4's if they truly provide a risk reward situation, but it seems that lately that is not the case. These guys are getting on these greens with 3-wood and if they happen to miss they are able to control their miss into a greenside bunker that gives them almost a guaranteed birdie opportunity. Another example showing how ridiculous distance is on tour is Number 18 at PGA National. Yesterday there were 76 birdies and 7 bogeys at the Honda Classic. There were even 15 eagles on that hole. I mean seriously folks....how long would you have to make that hole or what kind of changes to the layout would you have to make to come close to evening that out? How long would you have to make that hole to even out the number of eagles (15) and bogeys (just 7)? That brings me to another point....what would these courses do to us amateurs if they made it harder on the pros by course design, not to mention what would that cost and could these courses afford to do it? I do wonder though whether the restricted balls would actually take away the power advantage that some guys have. Unless we are trying to preserve some of the records from the past I don't think toning down the capabilities of equipment will do much to even out the field. I think Bryson and Dustin will have just as much of an advantage hitting a 8-iron over a shorter hitter on tour who is hitting a 4 or 5-iron. In fact scaling back on the ball might actually give him more of an advantage because he will always hit it further off the tee and the 2nd shot distance will be amplified more for the shorter hitters on tour than for the longer hitters. Bryson going from a wedge to an 8 iron is not going to be as severe as Zach Johnson going from a 9-iron to 4 or 5-iron. Also, he will likely be able to hit driver on more holes which will give him a little more advantage over the other folks compared to today. This is a really tough topic. I apologize for making a novel out of this but the way I see it is simple. We can either watch these guys overpower the course with the current technology or we can have them play restricted technology, but those are the only two real options as I see it. Either way, golf will still be the greatest game on earth.
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