We all know Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Anthony Kim and the rest of the PGA Tour's leading lights will be at the tour's biggest events, and that's wonderful for those events. But what about the lesser lights? (We'll refrain from naming them to keep from mocking them publicly.) What about the tournaments that struggle year after year to get sponsorship, bringing in a field of guys who you wouldn't know if you cut them off in the express line at the grocery store?
One of the proposals to get more juice to these smaller tournaments is the so-called "designated events" policy, where pros have to play at a specific smaller event or two each year. Makes sense, right? Show up at East Poochie Country Club once every four or five years to throw a little love to the local economy?
Yeah, well, the pros didn't exactly see it that way. At the current meeting of the PGA Tour Policy Board, the "designated events" policy apparently won't be implemented for next year. Sources contacted by Golfweek have indicated that, in Davis Love III's words, the tour is going to "backtrack" and not implement the policy for 2011.
The policy had been approved this past summer, but required ratification at the current meetings. According to Golfweek, "mixed reviews" from both players and tournament officials led to the current negative climate. The policy would have required players to visit one or two pre-determined smaller events each year. The proposal is voluntary this year, but could become mandatory in 2012 if players don't step up and play in the smaller events.
Of course, while it seems to make sense to the fans, the tournament directors added another wrinkle: being "designated" could be a stigma. Still, who cares what gets Tiger or Phil into the Anonymous Insurance Company Classic, as long as they're there?