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Bryson’s compass illegal - USGA

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Once again these clowns at Far Hills show how removed they are from reality. John Bodenhamer actually said this: "With some of these sorts of devices, it can be difficult lines to draw on what's permissible and what is not permissible.”

No, John; it's easy to draw lines. The compass actually has a pencil for just this reason. Dude should wear all black, including Rick Moranis' helmet from Spaceballs. “Grow the game...” Whatever.

 

 

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The guy has one win. This is about as much an advantage as carrying a banjo in your golf bag.

 

 

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The guy has one win. This is about as much an advantage as carrying a banjo in your golf bag.

 

 

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Two wins... ;) . Also, if it's that much of an advantage why is the USGA getting upset? Let Bryson find his true north!

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I don't understand the outrage. 

 

This is clearly "unusual equipment" on a golf course, and Bryson uses it to assist him, by his own admission.  Based on the current rules, that makes it illegal.  

 

Besides, what did he really gain by using it?  I did a construct to see, and it might make a difference of 3 or 4 feet on one of the detailed green maps..

green.png

In addition, he can still mark up his green book before he plays, without slowing everyone else down as he draws arcs on every tee or fairway.  It seems to me that Bryson was doing this to show everyone how smart he thinks he really is, rather than deriving an actual advantage.  I bet he does his practice round distance measurement with a laser that reads to the 0.1 yard, going to the closest whole yard isn't precise enough.

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I don't understand the outrage. 

 

This is clearly "unusual equipment" on a golf course, and Bryson uses it to assist him, by his own admission.  Based on the current rules, that makes it illegal.  

 

Besides, what did he really gain by using it?  I did a construct to see, and it might make a difference of 3 or 4 feet on one of the detailed green maps..

 

I have mixed feelings on this. On the one hand, I see the argument that, by the letter of the law, it likely is outside the rules. For that reason, there really shouldn't be an objection to the USGA decision.

 

And I can see the argument that if Bryson keeps pushing the boundaries, he should expect the rules enforcers to push back on him. This is true of his protractor, his homemade putter experiments, etc.

 

But there also seems to be a sense in which the USGA is going after Bryson not because he's gaining an advantage, but merely because he's different. And I think that's what gets under some of our skin.

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Yup, just saw this news clip.  I'm actually a bit surprised they ruled it as illegal.  In any case, as @DaveP043 points out, he could just do all his compass reading/measuring during practice rounds - wherein I don't believe the restriction would apply?


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 It seems to me that Bryson was doing this to show everyone how smart he thinks he really is, 

If he was really smart he wouldn't need all the gadgets and tools, and would be able to read a green and do calculations in his head, from memory.  Seems that the more tools you think you need to use, the...well....fill in the blanks.


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I have mixed feelings on this. On the one hand, I see the argument that, by the letter of the law, it likely is outside the rules. For that reason, there really shouldn't be an objection to the USGA decision.

 

And I can see the argument that if Bryson keeps pushing the boundaries, he should expect the rules enforcers to push back on him. This is true of his protractor, his homemade putter experiments, etc.

 

But there also seems to be a sense in which the USGA is going after Bryson not because he's gaining an advantage, but merely because he's different. And I think that's what gets under some of our skin.

Do you think that if someone else had done this, the ruling would have been different?  I don't know, I hope it would have been the same, but I really don't know. 

 

I've read some stuff indicating that Bryson is among the "turtles" on the golf course, and taking the time to use any kind of geometric construction to determine a hole location while on the course can only slow down play.  Do it in advance, and it will both be legal and cause less delay.

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But there also seems to be a sense in which the USGA is going after Bryson not because he's gaining an advantage, but merely because he's different. And I think that's what gets under some of our skin.

I think there is merit to this in some respects.  I also think that it's ok to be different, in a good way.  Bryson is different in a bad way.  I've read a post somewhere recently where a few people have made comments about how slow he is on the golf course.  If you are trying to be different and it slows you down, that's not a good thing.  Using this compass thing or protractor, or whatever you want to call it on the greens, would slow things down I am pretty sure.  That's definitely not good.

 

Being different can be a postive, like Bubba and his crazy swing and distance and all of that.  I think Bubba is good for the game.  And I also think that at one time (certainly not now), that John Daly was good for the game with all of his quirks and personality traits.  John is definitely a different cat.

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I've read some stuff indicating that Bryson is among the "turtles" on the golf course, and taking the time to use any kind of geometric construction to determine a hole location while on the course can only slow down play.  Do it in advance, and it will both be legal and cause less delay.

I've read similar comments and things as well.  Mostly just online scuttlebutt, but if you read it enough times, and in different places, and it all matches up for the most part, generally speaking it's probably true.


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Yup, just saw this news clip.  I'm actually a bit surprised they ruled it as illegal.  In any case, as @DaveP043 points out, he could just do all his compass reading/measuring during practice rounds - wherein I don't believe the restriction would apply?

None of the rules apply in practice rounds.  You are also permitted to bring written material with you to the course to refer to, with pretty much no limits, so he can establish the "true hole locations" before he gets to the first tee, as soon as he gets the pin sheet for the day.  I'm not sure why he hasn't chosen that route already, it has to be more accurate to do this sitting at a table, as opposed to standing in the fairway trying to hold the green book with one hand and use the compass to draw arcs with the other.  Isn't he all about accuracy?  It almost seems like a look-at-how-smart-I-am maneuver.

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But they continue to allow green reading books

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But they continue to allow green reading books

They continue to allow all kinds of written materials.  It would be difficult to write a rule that allows one type of book, like a course yardage guide, or perhaps handwritten green-reading notes, and not allow prepared green books.  I don't like them, I wish the ruling bodies could find a way to ban them, but writing the rule won't be easy.  If you have a suggested wording, I'd be interested to read it.

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None of the rules apply in practice rounds.  You are also permitted to bring written material with you to the course to refer to, with pretty much no limits, so he can establish the "true hole locations" before he gets to the first tee, as soon as he gets the pin sheet for the day.  I'm not sure why he hasn't chosen that route already, it has to be more accurate to do this sitting at a table, as opposed to standing in the fairway trying to hold the green book with one hand and use the compass to draw arcs with the other.  Isn't he all about accuracy?  It almost seems like a look-at-how-smart-I-am maneuver.

 

I am not certain but it was my understanding Bryson was utilizing a compass to determine the accuracy of the daily "pin sheet". These guys all have green books that are mapped out to the Nth. The tour hands out daily sheets and players accordingly mark up the corresponding coordinates for each hole. It's at this point that Bryson steps in with the scientific method by pondering the legitimacy of the tour's proffered data.

 

Under the rules, a player may not scout the golf course in advance of their stipulated pairing on any day of official competition. I have always thought that was one of the better USGA rules out there but for the "Mad Scientist" it introduces unacceptable variables. So he decided to implement a rudimentary geometric device to verify the accuracy of the tour's location data. And herein lies the real source of Bryson's "problem"... he mouths off to some scribes that his compass experiments suggest the tour's data is wrong.

 

Instead of quietly shuffling along with an ace up his sleeve; he essentially claims his method provides tangible advantage. In essence, he embarrassed the tour in a way that allowed them to single him out in their retribution. In my opinion, this is more tit-for-tat in the cat fight between the scientist and the USGA. Defending the logic on this decision viewed against currently allowed "equipment" would not be an enviable end of the debate table. Trying to identify another common behavior with some parallel logic; I think this makes about as much sense as the USGA deciding to outlaw the plumb bob.

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If you have a green reading sheet. Why can't you have something that helps you verify the accuracy the green reading sheet? It seems hypotcritial to me.

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I am not certain but it was my understanding Bryson was utilizing a compass to determine the accuracy of the daily "pin sheet". These guys all have green books that are mapped out to the Nth. The tour hands out daily sheets and players accordingly mark up the corresponding coordinates for each hole. It's at this point that Bryson steps in with the scientific method by pondering the legitimacy of the tour's proffered data.

 

Under the rules, a player may not scout the golf course in advance of their stipulated pairing on any day of official competition. I have always thought that was one of the better USGA rules out there but for the "Mad Scientist" it introduces unacceptable variables. So he decided to implement a rudimentary geometric device to verify the accuracy of the tour's location data. And herein lies the real source of Bryson's "problem"... he mouths off to some scribes that his compass experiments suggest the tour's data is wrong.

 

Instead of quietly shuffling along with an ace up his sleeve; he essentially claims his method provides tangible advantage. In essence, he embarrassed the tour in a way that allowed them to single him out in their retribution. In my opinion, this is more tit-for-tat in the cat fight between the scientist and the USGA. Defending the logic on this decision viewed against currently allowed "equipment" would not be an enviable end of the debate table. Trying to identify another common behavior with some parallel logic; I think this makes about as much sense as the USGA deciding to outlaw the plumb bob.

I posted earlier a figure that I drew up, trying to understand what Bryson was doing.  I showed that for one specific case that the difference between "linear" pacing and Bryson's "compass arc" measurement was on the order of 4 feet.  Without watching how the hole-cutter did his job, its pretty much impossible to know which method is more accurate, but Bryson likes his "science."

 

I know that the Rules don't allow a player to practice on the Competition Course on the day of a stroke play event.  I don't see a rule saying they can't scout the course, unless its a Condition of Competition, is that what you're talking about?

 

As for defending its decision about a compass, someone fighting it would have to argue that either:

   A compass is not "unusual equipment" on a golf course, or

   Bryson wasn't using it to assist him in measuring distances (bryson said that's exactly what he was doing)

It seems to me that the USGA decision is correct under the current rules.

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I posted earlier a figure that I drew up, trying to understand what Bryson was doing.  I showed that for one specific case that the difference between "linear" pacing and Bryson's "compass arc" measurement was on the order of 4 feet.  Without watching how the hole-cutter did his job, its pretty much impossible to know which method is more accurate, but Bryson likes his "science."

 

I know that the Rules don't allow a player to practice on the Competition Course on the day of a stroke play event.  I don't see a rule saying they can't scout the course, unless its a Condition of Competition, is that what you're talking about?

 

As for defending its decision about a compass, someone fighting it would have to argue that either:

   A compass is not "unusual equipment" on a golf course, or

   Bryson wasn't using it to assist him in measuring distances (bryson said that's exactly what he was doing)

It seems to me that the USGA decision is correct under the current rules.

 

I liked your green mock up and agree any advantage Bryson's method might offer is negligible at best.

 

Correct, a "Condition of Competition" during stipulated play in high-level events, typically states competitors are not allowed to even set foot on the course proper prior to their assigned pairing. But watching the televised broadcast is perfectly allowable... which is befuddling.

 

The advent of modern green reading books was fairly recent and in my opinion, the wealth of information that has subsequently been packed into that package should have also been deemed "unusual". From the perspective of distance measuring devices, all the language seems to suggest a prohibition on actual distance measurements and Bryson is merely utilizing a compass to theorize distance on a piece of paper.


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Two wins... ;) . Also, if it's that much of an advantage why is the USGA getting upset? Let Bryson find his true north!

Fair play! Thanks for the correction 🤙🏼

 

The USGA does an awful job of accounting for the human element. This is straight up silly, let the guy use a compass. Who cares, I think it's actually pretty cool how he's using some innovation.

 

Just imagine what that could do for impressionable kids. They may ask hey Mom or dad, what's a compass and how does it work?

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Fair play! Thanks for the correction 🤙🏼

 

The USGA does an awful job of accounting for the human element. This is straight up silly, let the guy use a compass. Who cares, I think it's actually pretty cool how he's using some innovation.

 

Just imagine what that could do for impressionable kids. They may ask hey Mom or dad, what's a compass and how does it work?

Could you imagine the average parent trying to explain what a compass is and how it works? Most probably haven't touched one since the 6th grade.

 

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If his scientific method is that good why isn't he winning more.

 

 

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