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Why haven't PGA Tour scores come down w/ tech


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#1 bulldog8b

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 06:51 PM

Reading through the thread on PR's ancient irons at the Masters got me thinking. Why haven't scores come down with all the new tech? Seems like going from persimmon to steel to titanium to 460cc titanium with movable weights and $1000 graphite shafts along with Trackman and ProV1s and all the other tech through out the bag would make scores come down. Plus these guys now are bigger and stronger, in better shape and have had coaches and psychiatrists and all the rest since they were kids. So why haven't scores come down much? Harder courses? Faster greens? Pins more tucked?

Just seems strange that 50 years ago with persimmon and butter knives and whatever they used for balls guys could shoot 65 and today with all the tech that same 65 on the same course is a good score.

Or am I totally wrong and scores have come down?


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#2 mjen43

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 06:58 PM

Because all the “problems” with the professional game are imaginary constructs created by those with an interest in providing a “solution,” if you know what I mean. The technological advances provide fractional improvements at the highest level. At lower levels it makes no difference.

Edited by mjen43, 10 April 2018 - 07:02 PM.


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#3 sdandrea

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 06:59 PM

In spite of it all, golf is still undefeated.  It's like Father Time - it's the game we can never beat.
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#4 Sean2

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 07:06 PM

Courses today are also immaculate...at least the ones the professionals play.
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#5 mark m

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 07:15 PM

Obviously the courses are way longer. Greens seem to be getting firmer each year as well. There is a point where green speeds and firmness make for a bad golf course and a test which is not interesting to play or to watch. We are close to the max now.

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#6 nitram

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 07:20 PM

Because golf is still hard, even for the guys and gals getting paid to play it.
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#7 Big Ben

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 07:29 PM

Also to add that these scores become infinitely more difficult to crack the lower they go. If I'm a 15hdc it's much easier to move to 12 then it is for a 6hdc to move it to 3. Now take those same stats and reduce them to under par. These guys are the best of the best and they always have been.

Edited by Big Ben, 10 April 2018 - 07:31 PM.

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#8 DonMega884

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 07:29 PM

Back in the day you could play drunk on the PGA

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#9 OrangeGravy

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:06 PM

View Postmark m, on 10 April 2018 - 07:15 PM, said:

Obviously the courses are way longer. Greens seem to be getting firmer each year as well. There is a point where green speeds and firmness make for a bad golf course and a test which is not interesting to play or to watch. We are close to the max now.

^^This has something to do with it. Courses have evolved right along with equipment. If the courses were exactly the same as they were 30/40 years ago who knows?
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#10 WidespreadPanic

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:09 PM

Ancient irons? Not much tech involved a blade.

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#11 MSUIRONDAWGS

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:17 PM

Doesnt matter how closer you are in proximity because of hitting it farther, etc., it still boils down to making putts. With the greens faster and faster, it gets harder. The loft on putters has come down a bunch for most guys not forward pressing, because there really is no need for the most part to have the added loft as in yesteryear's putters because of slower greens/having to need to pry the ball out of a deeper depression. In short, faster greens in my opinion.

Edited by MSUIRONDAWGS, 10 April 2018 - 08:18 PM.


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#12 Cwing

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:18 PM

What are the average scores of today vs yesteryear?

There seems to be are allot of those 59, 60-63 numbers now a days despite the longer courses and faster greens.
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#13 ChillyDipper

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:24 PM

I believe this is the the opposite debate to “is the ball going too far?”    In my mind, players are getting better, tech is improving, and courses are getting harder (when they want to).   Can’t draw any conclusions without recognizing all three of these factors and doing a controlled study on the impact of each.   Of course, this only pertains to tour level play, not joe blow at your local muny.
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#14 MadGolfer76

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:31 PM

Because tech has been geared to "farther," and not "closer."
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#15 QMany

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:38 PM

Look no further than Augusta: Holes lengthened. Fairways narrowed by planting hundreds of trees. Greens firmer and faster than ever.

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#16 Petunia Sprinkle

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:40 PM

View PostMadGolfer76, on 10 April 2018 - 08:31 PM, said:

Because tech has been geared to "farther," and not "closer."

+1.

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#17 golfandfishing

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:43 PM

A few things-  winning scores and the Vardon Trophy number probably have remained about the same overall. However the scores it takes to get on tour, make cuts and earn a living I would bet have come down.       Courses are obviously tougher than what you are comparing them too.             As someone else mentioned the super low scores are much more common now too. US Open scoring record got shattered, 59s are blah news now and 62 got posted in a major last year by a journeyman.

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#18 knock it close

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 08:54 PM

Because courses get longer, trees get added, mow lines get narrower, greens get firmer and faster.
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#19 bulldog8b

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 09:33 PM

View Postgolfandfishing, on 10 April 2018 - 08:43 PM, said:

A few things-  winning scores and the Vardon Trophy number probably have remained about the same overall. However the scores it takes to get on tour, make cuts and earn a living I would bet have come down.       Courses are obviously tougher than what you are comparing them too.             As someone else mentioned the super low scores are much more common now too. US Open scoring record got shattered, 59s are blah news now and 62 got posted in a major last year by a journeyman.

That's true. I guess even if winning scores haven't gotten lower there are a lot more guys shooting low scores a lot more

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#20 BrianMcG

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 09:40 PM

Because the golf courses are almost 1000 yards longer.


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#21 Shilgy

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 10:09 PM

View Postmark m, on 10 April 2018 - 07:15 PM, said:

Obviously the courses are way longer. Greens seem to be getting firmer each year as well. There is a point where green speeds and firmness make for a bad golf course and a test which is not interesting to play or to watch. We are close to the max now.
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#22 PGArox

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 10:22 PM

In 1990 eight players on TOUR had scoring averages under 70.  In 2000 the number had climbed to 12.  Last year 18 players averaged under 70.

Last year 73 players had 30 or more rounds in the 60's.  In 1990 only 31 players had 30 or more rounds in the 60's.

The all-time PGA TOUR scoring record for 72 holes was set last year by Justin Thomas.

There have been nine rounds in TOUR history under 60.  Six of the nine have come in this decade.

Last year Branden Grace became the first player in history to shoot a 62 in a major championship.

I can see why anyone would wonder why PGA TOUR scores haven't come down. :)



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#23 Ashley Schaeffer

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 10:43 PM

It's obviously because the players of yesteryear were better.  Just look at all the multiple major champions a generation ago versus today.  All the greats were born before 1950, and that is that.  There are no other factors to consider.  The players nowadays just swing for the fences with zero precision, and they aren't hungry for wins.  Don't give me this stuff about greens being firm and fast and courses being longer.   Roger Maltbie with an M4 driver would be a one-man wrecking crew on tour today.
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#24 Ghostwedge

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 12:01 AM

Lol... i really like ol Roger but he 's not beating Spieth, JT and DJ very often. Doubt he'd have made the cut last week.


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#25 Slanman

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 12:02 AM

There’s more to the game than equipment. Consistency is more important. Old or new equipment, it’s very very hard to put the ball where you want it. Otherwise every hole would be like a hole in one or albatross


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#26 gretch

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 12:44 AM

View PostPGArox, on 10 April 2018 - 10:22 PM, said:

In 1990 eight players on TOUR had scoring averages under 70.  In 2000 the number had climbed to 12.  Last year 18 players averaged under 70.

Last year 73 players had 30 or more rounds in the 60's.  In 1990 only 31 players had 30 or more rounds in the 60's.

The all-time PGA TOUR scoring record for 72 holes was set last year by Justin Thomas.

There have been nine rounds in TOUR history under 60.  Six of the nine have come in this decade.

Last year Branden Grace became the first player in history to shoot a 62 in a major championship.

I can see why anyone would wonder why PGA TOUR scores haven't come down. :)

And only two of those previous three were played under the rules of golf.  Don't get me wrong, Al beat everybody's a**, and deserves all the accolades that go along with that.  But a long standing record of something that had never been done before....well it still hadn't really been done at that point.

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#27 hell_is_chrome

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 02:37 AM

In 1997 Augusta National was 6,925 yards. In 2002 it was 7,270 yards. Currently it is 7,445 yards. In the early 1990's when I started playing, I remember a fast stimp meter reading was 11-11.5. Now it's 14-15.

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#28 mark m

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 02:39 AM

View PostShilgy, on 10 April 2018 - 10:09 PM, said:

View Postmark m, on 10 April 2018 - 07:15 PM, said:

Obviously the courses are way longer. Greens seem to be getting firmer each year as well. There is a point where green speeds and firmness make for a bad golf course and a test which is not interesting to play or to watch. We are close to the max now.
Wait for Shinnecock.

From what I've read, they have really lengthened the golf course. Tips used to be 6996 and rated 74.7 - which is no longer a high rating. That would put it about 3.3 behind Bethpage, Hazeltine, Torrey, Erin Hills, etc. (which equals about 13 strokes over 4 rounds.) It sounds like it will be 7400+ par 70 - which should give it a rating around 78 before they start in on the US Open stuff they do. Hopefully this will enable them to have a fair set up. Here is a reminder of what happened last time:

http://www.golf.com/...back-shinnecock

A few paragraphs from that article

BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — The U.S. Open will return to Shinnecock Hills in 2018, heading back to a course that produced one of the most embarrassing final rounds in the tournament's history.


Retief Goosen won by two shots over Phil Mickelson in 2004 after a final round marred by greens that were almost too fast to play. At one point, officials had to sprinkle the seventh green simply to keep balls on the putting surface.


Ernie Els played in the final group that day and shot 80. No one broke par in the final round and the average score was 78.7.


It was widely viewed as one of the worst days for the USGA, which prides itself on setting up the toughest courses in tournament golf. Even the USGA officials conceded they lost control of the course.


"Shinnecock is a challenging course to set up, and we certainly experienced that in 2004 when we let the course get away from us the last round," USGA president Jim Hyler said Wednesday. "This has been well chronicled and discussed over the years. I will tell you that we have used this as a wholesome learning experience, and this experience led us to the development of our current setup philosophy that we use today."




So we'll see what happens this time.

Here is an article on the changes made to Shinnecock:

http://golfweek.com/...innecock-hills/


My original point was regarding what the PGA Tour has been doing with regard to their venues over the last 20 years.

(Not the USGA.) The scores would be much lower if they were playing the same courses from 20 years ago (under the same conditions and distances).


Edited by mark m, 11 April 2018 - 07:20 AM.

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#29 rawdog

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 08:00 AM

It's pretty simple, really. Courses are getting longer, but scores are still dropping.

You can't look at these charts for the majors and tell me there isn't an upward trend in length and a downward trend in scoring.

Courses of all par levels are getting longer. That's the primary defense of scoring.

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#30 isaacbm

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Posted 11 April 2018 - 08:15 AM

Because golf courses are way longer and way harder.
In the 40s 50s and 60s, it was uncommon for PGA tour events to ever be faster than eight on the stimpmeter. I remember reading something where Sam Snead was talking about how ridiculously fast Oakmonts  greens were. He said “I putted so well that week. Only four  three putts  and one four putt the entire week!!  Other guys really struggled ...”
That would be considered terrible by  anybody on tours standards today.  Oh and by the way the greens at oakmont  that week were 10  on the stimp!!

The average course on tour in the 1940s and 50s was 6500 yards and they played some at 6300.  6900 yard course
was considered really long for a major.


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