In a year filled with initiatives aimed toward getting more people into golf, one of the game's biggest names has now joined the movement.
Eighteen-time major champion Jack Nicklaus announced Thursday that his Muirfield Village Golf Club will host 12-hole tournaments beginning this Labor Day that will feature cups that are twice as large as normal. On top of the reduction of holes played and an increase in their size, the events will impose penalties to those players taking more than two and a half hours to complete their rounds in an effort to combat the slow-play issue in golf.
Photo by Dom Furore
Golf Digest started a similar campaign earlier in the year with the W I D E Open Championship, in which competitors played on 15-inch wide holes that made the game more fun, while speeding up play. The inaugural tournament was played March 11 at Pine Needles Lodge & GC and received rave reviews from the 60 participants.
In a related move earlier this summer, Barney Adams, the founder of Adams Golf, started "Tee It Forward" with the help of the USGA and the PGA of America. The idea was aimed at getting golfers of all skill levels to move up in tees to make courses and round times more manageable.
So what do you think of all these initiatives and would you consider playing in events with larger cups? They may still draw the ire of golf traditionalists, but having the backing of one the sport's all-time legends could start to change that.
-- Alex Myers
Follow on Twitter: @AlexMyers3