12.03.2008

The Amazing Mr. J.P. Hayes

I've always wanted to be a professional golfer -- an odd desire for a guy who rarely plays. And when I do, I'm horrible. I'd probably struggle to break 90 even after a few rounds of practice. But the PGA looks cool. Fancy courses. Fancy hotels. Cool clothes. Some buddy of yours to carry your bag. One guy that has made the PGA tour in the past is J.P. Hayes. I really don't know much about him other than to know he had a horrible year last year and was going to have to jump through some hoops to stay on the main tour. And the hoops are hard to navigate: It's something called "Q School" which, I think, is basically a multi day tourney of the greatest golfers in the would who are not part of the PGA Tour. The top 25 earn their PGA card which is like a baseball player being called up to the major leagues. Hayes' first round in the Q School tournament, which was played in McKinney last month, had gone well. And he sat in his hotel room that night reflecting on his performance. Perhaps reflecting too hard. There, alone, he discovered that on one hole he had used a golf ball that was not approved by the PGA. Big deal? You bet. He had signed his score card that day which means that the use of the ball would cause him to be disqualified from the tournament. That is, if anyone found out. So what does he do? He picks up the phone, calls an official, and reports his mistake. Disqualification, and with it his chance to be a member of the PGA tour next year, was fast and swift. The guy won't starve. He's made a fortune in golf and he'll get to play in some tournaments next year because he's a past winner or because he'll get a "sponsors exemption." But, still, what a story.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure, but, isn't it a term rarely used these days....."ethics"?
Or maybe that extinct phrase...."morals" or "standards"?
Not sure........
HHHmmmnnn......I'll have to check with my lawyer

Anonymous said...

I thought for a minute you were going to say him and his homies went clubbing and he shot himself in the thigh.

Anonymous said...

That's the beauty of golf. It's the only game where you call a penalty on yourself.

Double Fake Bagger Vance

Anonymous said...

Great post and great story.

Jarhead said...

The Conscience of a Conservative

Double Bake Fagger Vance

Anonymous said...

what refreshing integrity!

Anonymous said...

Sorry...notice that the word Pravits was not in any of that story

Anonymous said...

Maybe he should have thought that move through a little better before he picked up the phone. Must not have to pass an IQ test to qualify for the PGA. Triggerman

Anonymous said...

You like guys carrying your sagging bags, eh?

Anonymous said...

That my friend is why the game of Golf is so special!

And it's a shame you can't find it in other sports. The ethics and integrity of Golf have remained a part of the game from it's inception in Scotland to today.

J.P. will be a better player and respected even more when he returns for adhering to the rules of the game and setting the example of Golf.

Anonymous said...

There are some exceptions, but the PGA and the LPGA do seem to have a large group of exemplary people involved in them.

DB said...

I am a little tired of people giving credit to the 'game of golf'. It was this guys integrity, not the game. If you give the game credit, then you will have to give it blame whenever someone cheats (and they do).

Congratulations should go to Mr. Hayes and his parents, not to a game played by humans.

Anonymous said...

Always carefully check your balls before you play with them!

Double Fake John Daly

Anonymous said...

I think it is equal parts the game and the man. The game itself is full of individuals who, history tells us, have done the same or similar thing; consequently, there is an expectation within the games itself, that individuals will do the correct thing...as opposed to, say, the game of football, where history tells us the fraternity of players there will shoot themselves in the leg and then try to use connections at multiple levels to cover that up, or maybe run an illegal dog fighting camp and have others try to cover that up when it gets found out. Granted, Placebo and Wick may just be terrible examples of human nature, but the game itself is full of individuals who are used to getting away with things and having others cover things up for them. Not so much in the game of golf.