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Barstool Sports founder shot a 66 (of sorts) at Shinnecock, our Swing Analysis

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Dave Portnoy, Barstool Sports’ founder, just brought upcoming U.S. Open venue Shinnecock to its knees…kind of.

How did El Pres wind up teeing it up in Southampton? Portnoy wrote about the genesis of the challenge in a characteristic blog post.

“So Riggs and I got in a huge debate a couple weeks ago on Barstool Radio. The question at hand was whether I could win the US Open with unlimited mulligans. For me the answer was a no brainer. Of course I would. That’s not even me bragging. That’s just me knowing what I’m capable of and knowing what unlimited mulligans actually means. I’d 100% birdie every par 3 and then par everything else. That’s -4 a day. Riggs projects the winner at Shinnecock this year will shoot -4 for the entire tournament. The ENTIRE TOURNAMENT. That means I’ll win by roughly 12 strokes. Easy peasy”

“Well apparently the good folks at the USGA caught wind of our argument and have generously offered to let me play Shinnecock on Monday with unlimited mulligans…When I said I’d win with unlimited mulligans I assumed that for the first 2 rounds I’d play from dawn to dusk to achieve my perfect score of -4 per day.”

Was this an insane expectation or something easily achievable? First of all, what do you think Portnoy’s handicap is? 20-25?

Here’s his action

Our Tom Stickney had these remarks after watching the video.

“His shoulders open and tail needs to be stuck out more. Portnoy gets the club rotated a touch too much to the inside and it gets laid off on the way back. An over-the-top transition and a faulty pivot causes the fire-and-fall-back finish.”

Having seen his swing, knowing he had a wheelbarrow’s worth of golf balls and a crew of mulligan retrievers, how do you think El Pres did?

Surely, Barstool will produce video of the round beyond the few cell phone videos on Twitter and Instagram. And if you’d like to see those fragments, check out Portnoy’s Twitter, the Barstool Instagram, and well, the myriad of Barstool-related accounts.

But here’s the bottom line: With an innumerable amount of mulligans, the Barstool founder managed to shoot 66.

Even say he averaged 10 mulligans per shot, shooting four under with, what we’ll label as an “extremely average” swing is impressive. .

Maybe it’s a feat of endurance, determination, and strategy more than it is a great golfing performance, but Portnoy’s performance in Southampton was more than a mere publicity stunt.

And even though we might stereotype the Stoolies as members of the “mashed potatoes” crowd, it’s tough to say the exposure and interaction is bad for the USGA and the U.S. Open.

What do you think, GolfWRX members? Interested? Impressed? Don’t care.

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Patricknorm

    May 23, 2018 at 7:01 am

    Is this not the exact opposite way to promote golf amongst millenials? Unless I had satellite radio I’d have no idea what Barstool Sports was about. I first heard about this shenanigans on PGA Tour radio yesterday during the drive time broadcast. Talk about making a mockery of a fantastic golf course and further, making a mockery of golf altogether. If he wanted to test his “ mulligan “ concept I’d prefer he do it on a course that doesn’t rank in the top 100 in the world. I know there is a market for this kind of culture ( Barstool Sports), but , seriously I have no respect for this kind of experiment.

    • Teeps

      May 23, 2018 at 7:33 am

      You have no idea what you are talking about. Why does it matter what course he did it on. The argument was (from non dedicated golf fans) with unlimited mulligans anyone could win the US Open (shoot under par in one round.) Dave is a horrible golfer and said he could do it while everyone who knows and understands golf said he could not. The USGA itself offered the opportunity to try this. The point was proven in a big way, He managed to shoot under par while under tournament conditions.

      I consider myself a golf “hardo” and do not see any issue with this. It is a fun thing that allows people that don’t have the ability or the connections to play a course like this connect with it and see what it would take for someone of their skill level to compete on a course of this stature.

      They were welcomed by not only the Course Staff but the USGA itself so you are in the minority here. Either except the new age of golf and where it is going or golf will be dead in the near future.

  2. peedeecue

    May 22, 2018 at 2:40 pm

    That swing is worth about as much as his website.

  3. TheCityGame

    May 22, 2018 at 11:58 am

    This doesn’t make sense. He had unlimited mulligans only on tee shots? Or every shot?

    If it was only tee shots, then I don’t know how he shot 66. So, he has a ball out there 225(?) on every tee shot? No way he shoots 66.

    On the other hand, if it was every shot and every putt, 66 seems too high. Anyone who can contact a ball should be able to shoot 60 before sunset.

    • 3puttPar

      May 22, 2018 at 12:03 pm

      I agree, he should have shot closer to 60.

      I’d like to see what he shot, from the tips, no mulligans, 150?

    • Teeps

      May 22, 2018 at 1:29 pm

      It was media day, it was a shotgun start, they had a group behind them all day. USGA said they would give him 5 hours and 15 mins to finish, but they actually told him he had to leave a green before he could make the birdie because there was a group waiting on the tee.

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19th Hole

Lexi Thompson violates Rules of Golf at Indy Women in Tech Championship

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During the third round of the Indy Women in Tech Championship, Lexi Thompson unknowingly ran afoul of the Rules of Golf.

Preferred lies–AKA lift, clean, and place–were in effect at soggy Brickyard Crossing. Thompson hit her drive at the par-5 10th hole wide right. It settled in the sixth fairway. Believing she was allowed to lift and clean any ball in the fairway, Thompson began to do so.

The rule, of course, only applies to balls that settle in one’s own fairway. Fortunately for Thompson, an official saw what was happening and stepped in to administer a penalty.

“Thankfully, Marty [the official] intervened before she hit her next shot,” Golf Channel’s Kay Cockerill reported. “Otherwise, she would have been hitting from the wrong spot, and it would have been a two-shot penalty. So, in a sense, it saved her a shot.”

The LPGA issued this statement.

“While playing the third round of the 2018 Indy Women in Tech Championship, Lexi Thompson incurred a one-stroke penalty for breach of the preferred lies local Rule (Appendix IA Part 3b Course Conditions).”

“The Committee adopted the preferred lies local Rule due to the turf conditions of the golf course after receiving over an inch of rain. The LPGA, under the local Rule, restricts the player from preferring her lie when her ball lies in a closely-mown area of a hole other than the one being played.”

“During the play of hole #10, Thompson’s tee shot came to rest in the fairway of hole #6. As Thompson’s ball lay on the fairway of hole #6, she was not entitled to prefer her lie.”

“She preferred her lie in breach of the local Rule but prior to playing her stroke from a wrong place (Rule 20-7), she was questioned by a Rules official regarding her actions. As she had not played her stroke from the preferred spot, she did not receive the general penalty of two-strokes under the local Rule. However, she did incur a one-stroke penalty under Rule 18-2 for lifting her ball at rest without authority.”

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19th Hole

Joe LaCava, Tiger Woods’ caddie, paid a heckler $25 to leave at the WGC-Bridgestone

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While Steve Williams would likely have taken a different route, Tiger Woods’ current caddie admitted to bribing a fan to leave his boss alone.

LaCava called into ESPN’s “Golic and Wingo” and told a tale of paying of a heckler at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.

LaCava said the man heckled Woods throughout his final round at the Bridgestone, and on the 14th hole, LaCava interceded, telling the man to check out action elsewhere on the course. Interestingly/absurdly, the man said he would be happy to, provided LaCava reimburse him for his ticket.

Here’s the full transcript c/o ESPN.

Mike Golic: “Did you have any issues with the people at Bellerive?”

Joe LaCava: “Not at all, and you hit it right on the head, 99 percent of the guys and women are behind Tiger, pushing for Tiger. They want to see good golf in general they’re not anti-the-other-guys, but they’re certainly rooting for Tiger more so than the other guys. But, funny you guys ask that question. The week before in Akron, I had a little incident with a guy who was harassing my guy on the 14th hole at Akron the last day outside the ropes, roughening him up pretty good. And I said, hey listen bud, why do you gotta go there? Everyone’s having a good time, everyone’s pulling for Tiger. You don’t like the guy that’s one thing, but you don’t to be yelling at my guy, screaming negative stuff like that. And I said at the end of the day, if you affect him, his performance, it effects my bottomline. So he calls me a couple names and I go back and forth with the guy, and I say why don’t you just leave. And he says well if you give me $25 for the ticket that I bought today I’ll leave. And I said here you go, here’s $25.”

Mike: “Did he leave?”

Joe: “So I whip out $25 and he starts to go down the 14th fairway toward the green. I say look pal $25 is $25 you gotta head the other way. So he starts to head the other way, he goes 20 yards down the line, then he calls me a certain other, a swear word. So I run 20 yards back the other way and I’m going face to face with this guy. And all the sudden Tiger’s looking for a yardage, and I’m in it with this guy 20 yards down the line. So some cop has to come in, push this guy outta the way, and take him outta the tournament.

Mike: “So what did Tiger say when you came back to give him the yardage?”

Joe: “Well that’s a great question. We were so far to the right of the trees, and he was on his third shot believe it or not, we were still 150 yards away from the green, and he didn’t really know what happened. He heard the commotion, he heard the guy yelling at him, so we talked about it after the fact, but he didn’t really know how it developed. And he says I was wondering what happened, and he goes normally it wouldn’t that long to get a yardage. I said well a little incident down the road. He didn’t have a problem with it, and actually I gotta standing ovation for kicking the guy outta there.

Security probably should have happened sooner when LaCava was $25 richer.

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19th Hole

A brief cart ride (by his caddie) has big implications for Akshay Bhatia at the U.S. Amateur

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16-year-old Akshay Bhatia may be looking for a new caddie for his next event. The rising star of amateur golf was penalized when his caddie accepted a ride on a golf cart at the 14th hole during the round of 64 at the U.S. Amateur.

Bhatia would go on to lose to Bradford Tilley.

The match was all square at the 14th. Chris Darnell, Bhatia’s caddie, made a pit stop at the bathroom after Bhatia hit his approach. While the player walked to the green, Darnell was approached by what he believed was a USGA official driving a golf cart.

“The gentleman was wearing a USGA pullover,” Darnell said afterward. “I asked if I could get a ride to the green to keep up pace, and he said yes. So I hopped on the back, got up to the green, hopped off and thought nothing of it.”

Of course, neither players nor caddies can ride on any form of transportation during the round unless authorized, per the Rules of Golf. Bhatia was penalized accordingly and lost the hole after a (real) official spotted the infraction.

Particularly frustrating for the golfer was the fact that he had birdied the par-5 and believed he was going 1 up on his opponent, only to find out they were all square.

As mentioned, Bhatia would go on to lose in 19 holes.

Adding another layer to this drama, Darnell said Tilley’s caddie had done the same thing earlier in the match.

“I had already seen the other caddie in our group do it on the ninth hole,” Darnell said. “Same thing – USGA pullover, drove him from the bathroom up to the fairway – so I assumed it was fine. I didn’t point it out at the time because everything seemed kosher. He had the USGA stuff on, and I didn’t think anything of it.”

What are the chances Tilley or his caddie admit to the infraction now? And who is this mystery idiot who loves the USGA enough to drape himself in their garb but is daft enough to blatantly break a straightforward rule of competition?

Dumb rule? Certainly in this sense. But so many situations exist in amateur play that you can understand why the USGA would level a prohibition on transportation. Still, shouldn’t there be some room for interpretation? It’s difficult to argue Bhatia himself gained any advantage…

What do you think, GolfWRX members?

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