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19th Hole

Spieth tells fans to put phones away: “Sometimes it’s cool to actually watch”



Jordan Spieth appeared in a don’t text while driving PSA for AT&T a couple of years ago, if you recall. The spot was titled “It Can Wait.”

It seems the young maestro is of a similar mind with respect to a crowd full of cell-phone waving fans recording his every move (on one occasion, at least).

Spieth went long and left at the par-3 eighth hole yesterday and needed to take relief from a cart path.

He then turned to the swarm around him and said.

“If everybody could do me a huge favor and not video this shot…Thank you. Sometimes it’s cool to actually watch. Please, no phones. Can’t have any going off in this shot.”

Now, to be fair, we shouldn’t generalize that Spieth is anti-fans with phones in general based on this one remark, but you could reasonably surmise his frustration extended beyond merely the events of the eighth hole.

Here’s the video, c/o Paul Plumb.

Fans have been permitted to take pictures and video during tournament rounds since the Northern Trust last year.

Look for “It Can Wait: Part II,” in which Spieth advocates for fans to wait until the next group comes through to pull out their phones and hit record.

But really, what do you think about this, golf fans? Beyond Spieth’s remarks (and it is no doubt annoying to be surrounded by a mob of picture takers…especially after a bad shot), what do you think about the prevalence of phones on Tour?

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  1. Bob Booey

    Jun 5, 2018 at 9:34 am

    We need something to do during their 5 1/2 hour rounds play in 2 somes. How about a compromise? You speed up and we’ll put our phones away.

  2. BCC

    Jun 4, 2018 at 10:32 pm

    I think opposite… It’s fans’ choice to enjoy through camera more than look with their eyes. If it’s not good for them, they will not take it out but if they do, then they already decided what best for them. Some may do, some may dont.

    As a player, the best thing is to adapt with cultural change; otherwise, you will keep frustrated.

  3. Hagen

    Jun 4, 2018 at 11:50 am

    Put the phones on silent and all will be happy. Not that hard to use just a little bit of common sense.

  4. TeeBone

    Jun 3, 2018 at 11:44 am

    People…put the SnapFace down and experience life a bit.

  5. ZMoney

    Jun 2, 2018 at 8:34 pm

    It’s far beyond just golf tournaments. Nothing is worse that being at a concert and no one is actually watching it because they are concerned about their photography. I can tell you that the bands hate it as much as the PGA pro’s and it has nothing to do with how much money they make. It’s annoying.

    • Mark

      Jun 4, 2018 at 3:39 pm

      Dead on target here ZMoney. People are more concerned with posting pics or video to show off to their friends online when they go to events than actually experiencing what they should be watching.

      And anybody at a golf tournament who’s phone is not on silent is an idiot … Period

  6. Justin

    Jun 2, 2018 at 11:50 am

    I refuse to suffer stupid people who want to waste my time showing me what all they have recorded on their smart phones, so I don’t see the point in it all. I guess somebody is watching, it just isn’t me.

  7. Phil

    Jun 2, 2018 at 5:40 am

    Im confused… Ive owned many phones in my lifetime, and I thought the MUTE button was invented so that its silent during operation… What phones are making noises during video? I just dont get the “Go Off” scenario, like the old days of shutter cameras.

  8. James T

    Jun 1, 2018 at 9:09 pm

    I remember driving 100’s of miles, years ago, to observe a total eclipse of the sun along the majestic Columbia River. It lasted about 2.5 minutes during which most of my time was spent looking through the viewfinder of a camera. The 20 seconds I actually saw the eclipse with my eyes (yes, you can look at it directly during totality) were magical.I have some great photos but I’ve always regretted not having more face time with the sun and the moon.

  9. Bob Jones

    Jun 1, 2018 at 4:36 pm

    Ban cell phones photography at golf tournaments. Period.

  10. dan mccor

    Jun 1, 2018 at 4:11 pm

    I hate the yellers and the phone phreaks but more than anything I hate multimillionaires complaining about the very people who pay the money they win from enjoying themselves or recording a shot they spent hundreds of dollars to watch.

    Did not of these people ever play hockey, baseball, basketball or football. Could Speith not make a free throw because there was noise or distractions.

    Its time golfers grow a pair.

    • Jason Hutty

      Jun 2, 2018 at 5:27 am

      It’s not a case of growing a pair, it’s a case of having redneck fans having to be told how to behave because they’re incapable of doing it themselves. Many of us (including the players) just want people to understand the environment and behave accordingly, it’s not too much to ask, even from paying punters.

  11. dat

    Jun 1, 2018 at 3:58 pm

    He is completely correct. There should be a tour policy.

  12. Hamachijohn

    Jun 1, 2018 at 1:02 pm

    I tend to lean towards a “no phone/camera” policy. However, just stay focused and take the shot for crying out loud… looks like he got unraveled mentally. WWTD (What Would Tiger Do)?

  13. Milo

    Jun 1, 2018 at 12:19 pm

    Oh I’m sorry! I thought this was America!

    • Tom B

      Jun 1, 2018 at 1:30 pm

      So only fans have rights in America? The golfers don’t have the right to ask people to put away their phones?

    • Joey5Picks

      Jun 1, 2018 at 3:13 pm

      It is. And people are missing experiencing things live because they’re too busy watching it on their screen as they record it.

    • DougE

      Jun 2, 2018 at 8:51 am

      This is America, where there are still rules/law which need to be followed. A professional golf tournament is open to the public to attend. But, once you enter through the gates, it is a private event, subject to the rules of the event, which include rules of etiquette. Read the back of any ticket. There are rules. That is how a civil society works. Asking for a little respect, whether it’s Jordan Speith or any other civilized, sane, responsible human being, is not asking too much IMO.

  14. K Ayers

    Jun 1, 2018 at 12:07 pm

    The phone situation is not significantly different that the clowns yelling “in the hole” for every shot. Rather than enjoy the game they want to be able to show others what they saw. Or… didn’t see but recorded. Pathetic.

    • Joey5Picks

      Jun 1, 2018 at 3:14 pm


    • kevin

      Jun 1, 2018 at 4:16 pm

      ever went on vacation and took a picture?

      • Travis

        Jun 4, 2018 at 4:51 pm

        Nope, these people must not have a single photo of anything in their life. They’ve experienced everything first hand with zero recording of anything to remember it by.

  15. Charlie

    Jun 1, 2018 at 11:59 am

    I agree with Speith. Record vids at home from TV. MUCH better pics and vids from TV.

  16. Elliot mcdongle

    Jun 1, 2018 at 11:47 am

    Put the freaking phones away! Can’t stand being behind someone at a concert or show and have to stare at their phone above their head the whole time. Enjoy the moment. It’s not nearly as cool watching it later on your phone.

  17. Brian

    Jun 1, 2018 at 11:27 am

    Couldnt agree with the above two comments more, the phone craze drives me NUTS! Enjoy the moment, stop worrying about letting everyone know you’re there, most of us dont even care!

  18. Kevin Arnold

    Jun 1, 2018 at 11:15 am

    Couldn’t agree more….watch the tournament, look at the shots, and throw the phones away. The 70’s, 80’s and 90’s, man those were good times.

  19. Corey

    Jun 1, 2018 at 9:59 am

    This is a Spieth diva moment that I support 100%. Golf tournaments, concerts, etc are perfect summations of our society today. More worried about getting social media likes rather than living in and enjoying the moment.

    • Tom

      Jun 1, 2018 at 10:58 am

      I’m torn. While I do agree it’s nice to live in the moment, it’s also nice to have a record of it. I don’t have social media so I can’t comment on the likes, but I do like having pictures and videos of moments I’ve enjoyed.

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19th Hole

I wasn’t ready for the 2019 Rules of Golf



We weren’t ready. We thought we were, but we weren’t.

For the last year, the USGA reminded us that in 2019 Rules of Golf were coming, but we didn’t listen. We heard the flag stick could remain in and we heard that you could take a penalty drop from knee-height.

But we didn’t listen.

I bet none of you have even practiced using your putter to flatten the entire green between your ball and the cup. You can do that now.

I’m also sure that you and I will continue to hover our club in all hazards, er, penalty areas. Yeah, we’re calling it a penalty area now.

The USGA went to the extreme depths of changing words all to simplify the game for you.

I don’t think the USGA listened either.

The rule changes were intended to speed up play and simplify golf for amateurs. Seems like a good idea. In turn, they may have bamboozled the PGA Tour while confusing the only amateurs who kind-of, sort-of knew the rules.

The pros didn’t need a new rule book, the amateurs just needed a simple one.

Us “locals” as the USGA refers to amateurs, do have one extremely fluid perk. When hitting a ball OB, or following a lost ball, you can drop with a two-stroke penalty instead of walking back to the tee. This of course, is dependent on your course, head professional, tournament conditions, and other factors including and not limited to what phase the moon is in.

If that’s somewhat confusing, read up, ask about your local rules, and buy a few extra sleeves. Reason being, in 2019, the limit on searching for a golf ball has been cut from five to three minutes.


But wait, there’s good news.

Thanks to the USGA, if you accidentally move your ball as you frantically high-step through fescue, it’s no longer a penalty! What an exciting 180 seconds that will be!

If you somehow don’t find your golf ball in the hazard penalty area, the USGA tried to help us out, which they did, yet regrettably took away a more iconic portrait on the golf course.

The rigid, stoic stance and forceful drop of a ball at shoulder-height.

And we let it happen.

Now, we’ll watch a defeated man deliberately bend to his knees and gingerly drop his ball…Which, by the way, appears to be a convenient way for cheaters to “take a drop” that ideally doubles as “identifying my first ball”.

Don’t even get me started on the back issues this could flare up.

We heard in late 2018 that Bryson DeChambeau would use the flagstick when the odds were in his favor. He even laid it out simply for us.

“It depends on the COR, the coefficient of restitution of the flagstick.”


We didn’t listen Bryson, we didn’t believe. We also have absolutely no clue what you’re talking about.

But hey, as Bryson would say, don’t hate the player, hate the game. Yeah, he’d clearly never say that, but here’s to hoping!

We heard he would do it, but we didn’t believe it. We had to see to believe. What we saw was DeChambeau first in strokes gained putting in the very first round he was allowed to do it.

Obviously, this trend will continue for DeChambeau, and others may join in, because what is golf if not a constant chase for a marginally better opportunity at success.

Watch your back, because those others that may join in could be closer than you think. You may turn around to find a fellow member asking for the flag on their next 12-footer.

It should be a fun year of commentary and confusion at your local club and on the PGA tour. Professionals will have constant questions for rules officials, and commentators will consistently question Bryson’s methods.

There is one real question I hope is answered this April.

What will we do when Bryson banks in a downhill putt at No. 2 of Augusta?

Will we be ready? Will Augusta?

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19th Hole

Tweets of the Week: Justin Rose shows off his Honma clubs, Justin Timberlake does Happy Gilmore and Barack Obama’s new swing




Over the last seven days, Matt Kuchar brought home the bacon at the Sony Open, while golf fans got a look at plenty of new equipment releases for 2019. But here’s some things you may have missed, and some of the quirkier moments from the world of golf dished out in the Twittersphere in the last week.

Justin Timberlake’s Draw

Ten Grammy Awards, four Emmy Awards, and he can hit a perfect draw Happy Gilmore style. Bit annoying.

Rose Showcases His New Honma Clubs

Still waiting to make his first start of 2019, the World Number 1 is ready to go as a member of Team Honma.

Chez Reavie Goes Bananas

In case you missed it, Chez Reavie became the first player since the PGA Tour began keeping records to make three eagles on three par 4’s in a single round. The fact that he holed out each one from the fairway is quite incredible.

Obama’s New Swing

Barack Obama has had a bit more free time over the past couple of years, since, well you know, he’s not running the country anymore. How do you rate his swing, GolfWRXers?

Double Hit Rule

This video has caused much confusion over the past week on social media. The double hit rule may have changed in 2019, but this attempt is still illegal. Impressive either way you look at it though.



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19th Hole

Exploring Ireland: Where to golf, drink and stay on the Emerald Isle. Pt. 4. Bearna Golf Club, Galway



In these series of articles, I will be taking you around the Emerald Isle providing you with great golf courses to visit in some of the loveliest spots in Ireland. I’ll also be highlighting the best and most authentic Irish bars in these spots, as well as places to stay, eat and how to get there. Whether you’re taking a golfing holiday to Ireland in 2019 or are interested in doing so sometime in the future, I’ll make sure to let you in on the best places to spend your time.

In Part Three of our Exploring Ireland Series, we went west and focused on Spanish Point Golf Club in Clare. Now it’s time for Part Four, and we’re staying on the west coast and taking the short trip up to County Galway.

Galway city is famous for its bustling nightlife, and in terms of bars to choose from, there are few better places in Ireland. Whether it’s a quiet night out and a meal, enjoying a few pints with some live traditional music, or a wild all-nighter you’re looking for, Galway certainly has you covered. Conveniently, the city also homes some top golf courses, which makes it a must-visit destination for anyone coming to this island.

Bearna Golf Club, Galway


Galway Golf Club and Galway Bay Golf Resort are usually the two golf courses that people think of when they mention this county. But lurking under the radar is Bearna Golf Club, which will provide you with just as incredible an experience as those two courses, at a lower price.

Located within a 15-minute drive of Galway City, Bearna GC offers an authentic Irish golfing experience. Surrounded by bogland, you can expect your nose to take in all of the scents of Ireland as you navigate your way through the rugged land of humps, gorse bushes and ditches that will give your game a real workout.


Creeks will appear on most fairways, so don’t expect to be able to turn up and grip it and rip it. Bearna is a golf course that is going to make you think, and with the challenges provided, will most likely test your patience as well as your skill.

The track offers five different sets of tees, all of which provide for a fun test. The course ranges between 4,897 yards and 6,271 yards and plays as either a Par 72 or 71 depending on the tees you choose. Thirteen holes feature water, and the one relief that you will find here that is different than other courses in the area is the lack of fairway bunkers.


Robert J. Browne designed the course back in 1996, and as well as the feeling you will have of being amongst nature, you will also have impressive views of the Aran Islands, Galway Bay and the famous Burren.

During the week, 18 holes around Bearna GC will set you back just under $50, while to play on the weekend the rate rises to $75. Don’t be surprised if after your round you want another crack at this deceptive course.

Food & Drink – Tig Coili, Galway


There is no “best pub in Galway.” The city has an inordinate amount of amazing watering holes to spend your night, and it just comes down to personal taste and what experience you are looking to have for your night. As someone who loves the feel of an old traditional Irish pub though, Tig Coili gets my vote.


Located in the Latin Quarter of Galway City, this place will often have swarms of people flooding out from the bar onto the street. Traditional music plays here every night, with 14 music sessions each week. The pub prides itself on its music, with pictures of famous musicians that have played here in the past covering the walls.

Also, Tig Coili’s pint of Guinness is renowned for being one of the best in the area, and it’s what 90 percent of folks will be drinking for the night here.


As for food in Galway, it can only be oysters. Described by multiple top chefs as the “best flavoured in the world,” the oysters here come from Galway Bay and are so popular in the city that should you visit here in September you can enjoy Galway’s three day Oyster festival.

You can hop into most bars in Galway serving food and throw back half a dozen oysters, but if you want to experience them for a sit-down meal then go and visit Oscars Seafood Bistro, where the flavour will blow your socks off. An early bird two-course meal of half a dozen oysters and a plate of steaming hot mussels with fries will cost just $20. The perfect drink pairing for oysters? Guinness. Ideal.

Where To Stay

My recommendation is to stay in the center of Galway. We’ve gone traditional in our visits to Donegal and Clare, but for Galway, the city is so alive that you will want to stay right in the heart of it. The Jury’s Inn is a solid option, which will leave you within walking distance of the best bars, restaurants and sights to see in the city. A double room here will set you back in the region of $100 a night.


If you like to shop then visit Quay Street, where you can take in the shops while plenty of buskers on the street entertain you, while the bronze statue of Irish writer Oscar Wilde and Estonian writer Eduard Vilde is an imposing outdoor sight that is a trendy spot for a photo.


But as we’re sports lovers, then when in Galway do whatever you can to catch a game of hurling. Galway’s hurling side are currently one of the best teams in the land, winning the All-Ireland title in 2017, and they possess some of the most passionate fans. Just try not to mention the last final when you get here.

How to Get There

Galway is about as accessible as it gets from anywhere in the island. You can take the train from any major city in Ireland, and it’ll take you right into the city center of Galway. A direct train from Dublin City will arrive in Galway in just over two hours.

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19th Hole