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Just go with me for a second.  Not looking for an argument, merely tossing out an idea I had while watching the 2021 US Open today.

Fans and volunteer spotters definitely help find wayward tee shots for the pros.  The ball Bryson hit into the right rough on hole 12 on Sunday.  I don’t think there’s much chance he finds that within three minutes on his own.  I could be wrong, but when you have to walk 300+ yards to get to your ball, things get sketchy as to where the ball landed, if it hopped forward, buried, etc. 

I played the other day on a course with rough that was probably 3” long.  I had a tee ball miss the fairway by about 10yds. It took all four of us all of three minutes to find it.  The mowers had left the grass clippings on top of the  grass and the ball was underneath some clippings.

Several other times we were searching for balls in the rough we walked right by the ball over and over without seeing it (I’m sure many have experienced the same thing).

Having said that, could it be considered an unfair disadvantage for players teeing off early in the day before fans get to the course in mass?  Does it violate the spirit of the game to have fans help find golf balls for the superstars? 
 

Again, not looking to argue any point specifically, just curious as to the perspective of others here on this.  Obviously you can’t stop the fans from seeing where here balls land spotters (whose job it is to help spot balls), but I wonder if it doesn’t jeopardize the integrity of the game in some small way.

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Was a marker/spotter there as well? I don't have a huge issue with this, but I understand your point. I'm more irritated when fans pick up wayward balls,  like they forget they're at a tournament. Similar idea back 20 years ago when a group of spectators moved a boulder from Tiger's swing. I'm not sure there's a right or wrong

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6 minutes ago, JeremyD said:

Was a marker/spotter there as well? I don't have a huge issue with this, but I understand your point. I'm more irritated when fans pick up wayward balls,  like they forget they're at a tournament. Similar idea back 20 years ago when a group of spectators moved a boulder from Tiger's swing. I'm not sure there's a right or wrong

There certainly isn’t any way to change it.  The tours need fans obviously.  Just in no other sport I can think of do the fans play a role in helping the players in the actual tasks of the game.  It could be argued that a golfer finding their own ball is part of the skills of the game.  So fans helping in this task is potentially having a real tangible impact.

I’d have to check back on the spotter.  I’m sure there was.  Recall at the Masters last year Bryson unraveled after losing a tee ball on a par 4.  He had to go back and re-tee.  No fans to help find that ball and no spotter.

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14 minutes ago, GolfSpy_CS said:

There certainly isn’t any way to change it.  The tours need fans obviously.  Just in no other sport I can think of do the fans play a role in helping the players in the actual tasks of the game.  It could be argued that a golfer finding their own ball is part of the skills of the game.  So fans helping in this task is potentially having a real tangible impact.

I’d have to check back on the spotter.  I’m sure there was.  Recall at the Masters last year Bryson unraveled after losing a tee ball on a par 4.  He had to go back and re-tee.  No fans to help find that ball and no spotter.

great point on the Dechambeau Masters issue. To back up your point, it would be great to have these guys show the same struggles we have. I know they're likely 15 strokes better than me on a normal day, it doesn't hurt to play off trampled ground

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When my wife asked if I wanted to leave Maine and move to where she grew up, I couldn't say no to Pinehurst, NC. I honestly don't spend much money on golf equipment, but I'm constantly reading reviews in case I ever get ready to buy

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13 minutes ago, JeremyD said:

great point on the Dechambeau Masters issue. To back up your point, it would be great to have these guys show the same struggles we have. I know they're likely 15 strokes better than me on a normal day, it doesn't hurt to play off trampled ground

Yes!!!  One for the common golfer!!!

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It keeps the pace of play up. It would stink for them to add another hour on TV of players looking for balls. In general their rough is so much deeper and thicker than the courses we play. I'm fine with them getting help. It's going to happen anyway with all the fans around. The important thing for me is to see them hit out of it. 

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14 hours ago, JeremyD said:

great point on the Dechambeau Masters issue. To back up your point, it would be great to have these guys show the same struggles we have. I know they're likely 15 strokes better than me on a normal day, it doesn't hurt to play off trampled ground

Less related to the finding of golf balls but a thought I had yesterday especially while watching Bryson was a willingness to blast it into areas that had been walked on all weekend. It seemed like typically you'd have better odds with a lie on the ground where spectators had been walking all weekend than you would trying to hit the fairway and the ball barely rolling into the deep rough that hadn't been touched. 

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5 minutes ago, Curtis Atkinson said:

Less related to the finding of golf balls but a thought I had yesterday especially while watching Bryson was a willingness to blast it into areas that had been walked on all weekend. It seemed like typically you'd have better odds with a lie on the ground where spectators had been walking all weekend than you would trying to hit the fairway and the ball barely rolling into the deep rough that hadn't been touched. 

I was thinking the same thing. However aiming into an area with spectators intentionally to get a better lie and potentially hurting someone does not sit well with me. But I will give him credit for always thinking outside the box. 

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This (among other more substantial reasons) is why tee times are alternated the first 2 days. By the time you've reached the cut line, you're either making a charge or you aren't. Certainly it could impact the pace and moral for players already behind the eight ball, but I doubt anyone struggling that much early on the weekend is ever going to be presented with a trophy. I see your point, but in the grand scheme of things I few as a non-issue.

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I have no issue with it and if they didn’t have markers/spectators I’d bet they would have their caddies become more of a forecaddie and get out somewhere near their landing area to be ready

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I've actually thought about this over the weekend. How many times have any, public golf especially, lost a ball where we know exactly where we hit it? I did this on #5, no trees/water, nothing between #5 & #9 but grass and could not find the ball. Yes, officially rules say go back to the tee and hit 3. In the real world all the decent and fair playing partners say "we know where the ball should be, there's no good reason for a lost ball. Drop one in the area and hit your second." So this most certainly is a penalty that effects anyone that didn't have spotters, caddy, or  fans following every shot. This is more a beef of the "one game, one rule" nonsense from a few years ago. Declare all golfers have to follow one set of rules then create and enforce rules that protect the top .05% of golfers. Said be the other way. If I gotta find my own ball so do Brooksy, Bryson, and the rest. Rule for the majority, not the elite.

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If I hit it into the adjoining fairway's rough and the group playing that hole finds my ball, I am going to thank them and go on my way. Nothing really to do about crowds finding them. 

 

This on the other hand I do have an issue with. 

 

https://www.pgatour.com/video/2019/01/29/legends-of-the-green--fans-move-boulder-for-tiger-woods-in-1999.html

 

 

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On 6/21/2021 at 9:58 AM, Curtis Atkinson said:

Less related to the finding of golf balls but a thought I had yesterday especially while watching Bryson was a willingness to blast it into areas that had been walked on all weekend. It seemed like typically you'd have better odds with a lie on the ground where spectators had been walking all weekend than you would trying to hit the fairway and the ball barely rolling into the deep rough that hadn't been touched. 

His back 9 44 was Karma 

When my wife asked if I wanted to leave Maine and move to where she grew up, I couldn't say no to Pinehurst, NC. I honestly don't spend much money on golf equipment, but I'm constantly reading reviews in case I ever get ready to buy

I swing left handed and have been the State of Maine Left Hander's champion since 1997, the last year they held the tournament. I'm currently a 6.3 handicap. Trying to get lower, but my gut gets in the way.

WITB

Driver: :taylormade-small: R11 9 degree turned 1 degree lower (Bought since it was on sale at Dick's)

Irons: :titelist-small: 990's S300 Stiff shafts bought when I was in college. (Received a personal use discount, otherwise would've stuck with my Hogan Edge's)

3 Wood: :callaway-small: GBB Epic 15 degree (only club newer than 5 years in the bag)

52/56/60 :taylormade-small: Z Spin wedges (heck of a deal $100 for all 3 at Dick's in 2013)

Putter: :odyssey-small: White Hot XG SRT (bought because I won credit for a long drive in 2010)

 

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On 6/21/2021 at 4:49 PM, DiscipleofPenick said:

Declare all golfers have to follow one set of rules then create and enforce rules that protect the top .05% of golfers.

The Rules don't protect those players, the requirement to allow fans onsite does, and that's a financial matter.  The rules concerning lost balls were in place long before large galleries even existed, and there's really no reason to change it.  

On 6/21/2021 at 4:49 PM, DiscipleofPenick said:

In the real world all the decent and fair playing partners say "we know where the ball should be, there's no good reason for a lost ball. Drop one in the area and hit your second."

In my version of the real world, everyone I play with says "That's a shame" and the player whose ball was lost says "Yeah, but I gotta go back to the tee, or drop one around here with a 2-stroke penalty".  If you don't want to lose a ball, hit it in the short grass.

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One side of me says no spotters, find them yourself like we have too; but the other side dosen't see it as a big issue and it definitely speeds up play.  I for one do not want to see another 20-30 minutes added to rounds watching players and caddies tromp around the rough.

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Something like this has been brought up several times that I am aware of.   There is a  huge advantage in having 300 people to look for your ball on that blind tee shot over a hill where you can't see the landing area.  There is nothing that can be done at pro events to keep fans from helping, I wish there was.  However this huge advantage they have with this assistance, on the shot I mentioned or any other shot,  is why I don't take a stroke if my ball can't be located in play. 

I loved watching the no fan tournaments, not only watching the pro's struggle to find their ball, but watching them roll off under the trees and further out of play, because there wasn't a gallery 10 deep to stop the ball within 10 feet of the edge of the fairway.

 

 

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On 6/21/2021 at 10:33 PM, THEZIPR23 said:

How on earth did they rule that a loose impediment? 🤔

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On 6/28/2021 at 2:10 PM, stuka44 said:

However this huge advantage they have with this assistance, on the shot I mentioned or any other shot,  is why I don't take a stroke if my ball can't be located in play. 

Why not play it as a lost ball (which it is) and feel virtuous about the purity of the game you play, as compared to the PGA Tour.

4 hours ago, DStar said:

How on earth did they rule that a loose impediment? 🤔

Feel free to look up the Rules and Definitions, and tell us why it should NOT be considered a loose impediment.

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4 hours ago, DaveP043 said:

Feel free to look up the Rules and Definitions, and tell us why it should NOT be considered a loose impediment.

I'm sure it's allowed in the rules but is it in the spirit of the game? Couldn't do it if I was playing with 3 mates at the weekend as we wouldn't be able to move it but have 10 fans willing to do it...no problem for Tiger 🙄

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13 minutes ago, DStar said:

I'm sure it's allowed in the rules but is it in the spirit of the game?

Its pretty difficult to get golfers to agree as to what the "spirit of the game" means, so we're left with following the Rules as they're written.  We've seen other discussions where arm-lock putting is claimed to be against the "spirit of the game", I'm sure that we can find claims that being forced to play from a divot hole is against the "spirit of the game", lots of examples.  To me, playing by the Rules is well within the "spirit of the game".    And of course moving a boulder is something we wouldn't be able to do in a typical weekend game, but its definitely within the Rules.

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