What you were scheduled to be reading in this issue was a debate between Gorman and me on who should be named Player of the Year, Jordan Spieth or Jason Day.
Until the Tour Championship that was still a very viable topic. Then Spieth went and ruined it all.
Yeah, even if Day had captured the Tour Championship and the Fed Ex Cup, it was my contention that Spieth was still Player of the Year, based on winning two majors. But it would have been a great topic.
So instead you are getting next month’s topic, should the USGA and the R&A postpone their ban on belly putters? Nobody seems to give a fig about the long putter that Bernhard Langer and Adam Scott have made a fortune with.
Gorman and I are having a rare moment in which we pretty much agree, but the degree to which we are on the same page is not similar.
Tommy 3-putt is an aficionado of the belly putter, despite the fact that he is one of the few people in his age group who does not have an extensive boiler. He uses it and has for years.
I, on the other hand, hate the belly putter and prefer the traditional putter, although I have experimented with both the long and belly, just for laughs.
I am on record for being for the ban and if it is implemented for next year I won’t really object.
But there is another side to this and it really needs to be examined more closely.
A lot of older players, both professional and top amateurs, no longer have the nerves or whatever physical term you want to use, to putt effectively with the traditional putters.
How many of our favorite older players are going to disappear from the scene because they can no longer compete? Langer and Fred Couples immediately spring to mind. They may just say “the hell with it” and stop competing and that would be bad for golf.
Same is true with many of the younger players who grew up using a belly putter. Is golf better off if they stop playing or if they just fall off the face of the earth?
And let’s examine the fact that there is no viable statistical evidence that shows that anchoring the putter to the body makes one a better putter over someone who puts the traditional way. Do you think that Keegan Bradley or Webb Simpson are better putters with their belly blades (both have switched this year) than Jordan Spieth or Jason Day?
Now let’s talk about the putter itself. What is more extreme, a long or belly putter, or a normal length putter with a space age head? Look at all the different putter designs out there. Half the field at any tournament look as though they could be branding cattle, at a roundup, with their putters.
How about banning them and making putter heads universal?
I am not opposing a ban on belly or long putters being anchored, but it should begin in the junior ranks. Anyone still using anchored putters should be grandfathered in.
Let anyone who has competed in a USGA event, at any level, with an anchored putter, be allowed to continue. Prohibit anyone coming up from doing so. Simple.