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Jay Busbee

Teeing Off: Do the world rankings mean something now?


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elcome to Teeing Off, where Devil Ball editor Jay Busbee and head writer Shane Bacon take a day's topic and smack it all over the course. Suggest a future topic by writing, or hit us on Twitter at @jaybusbee and @shanebacon. This week, with a new No. 1 atop the world rankings for the second time since Halloween (that would be Martin Kaymer there at right), we discuss whether maybe the rankings might have a bit of relevance after all.

Busbee: Suddenly, like the mousy girl (or guy, let's not be sexist) who got all cleaned up and sexified, the Official World Golf Rankings mean something now. (Yes, that's the first time in history that "sexified" and "Official World Golf Rankings" were used together. And you were here to see it.) Anyway, with so many players so tightly bunched together, there are plenty of opportunities for players to take huge jumps with outstanding performances. So, my question to you, sir: will you start paying more attention to the rankings now that they're not the Tiger-and-everyone-else list?

Bacon: Honestly? No, not really. I look at them sometimes for color in articles (Do-Hoon X. Kim, ranked 131 in the world rankings ...) but for the most part, it's a feather in the cap for these players if they can get to number one, and that's about it. Do I find it really worrisome that four Europeans are in the top-four for the first time since 1992? No, not really. Euros are really good at golf. Do I find it crazy that Tiger has dropped to five in the world? Not really, I'm actually surprised he hasn't dropped further. I think the world rankings are fun to discuss for a minute, but for the most part, they're just another stat for these guys to talk about over thousand dollar bottles of wine and steaks I will never eat.

Busbee: Way to kill the bit, dude. So do we scrap the rankings altogether? I like the idea of them, but there has to be some deeper meaning to them than just the rankings themselves. Obviously, they get you into certain tournaments, but the guys we're talking about don't have to worry about that. (Do-Hoon X. Kim might.) So what's their purpose, then? And how do we goose them up? It all comes back to the question of motivation--what motivates these guys beyond just majors? Anything?

Bacon: It was interesting in Luke Donald's press conference on Sunday. The Accenture winner pointed out that money hasn't been a factor to him since about his second season on tour, because at that point, you've got so much of it you can dive head-first into your cold coin lockbox. Donald says he is motivated by winning, and maybe that really is the case with most of these players. I don't think the world rankings are completely idiotic, but I do think that something needs to be rewarded to the person at the end of every season that tops the list. I think it goes down to an idea of the best golfer IN THE WORLD, not just PGA or European Tour Player of the Year. Is this an idea that could help spice up this stat?

Busbee: Only if it comes with a luxury jumbo jet for you to fly your luxury Gulfstream in. No, that's a great idea, one that's starting to get some traction. A GREATEST GOLFER IN THE FREAKING WORLD honor would have some kind of eminence to it, and I think that'd be a fine way to give the rankings some merit. Let's make this happen. And then treat ourselves to wine and steak.

Bacon: Any chance you or I could get to number one? Seems like we'd at least give a more interesting post-round interview than some of these guys atop the rankings!

Busbee: "What was I thinking when I put that crucial approach in the water? What the [profane] do you think I was thinking, you [profane]? I was thinking how [profane]ing excited I'd be to talk to your [profane]ing [profane]" ... and cut to black screen. Perfect.

All right, you're up. Thoughts on the world rankings, or our prospective GGITFW award?

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