I’ve been listening to sports talk radio and reading various blogger’s and golf discussion forum commentary on the US Women’s Open playoffs and am amazed at the cruelty aimed at some of the LPGA golfers.
Pat Hurst, of course, is the prime target. Her weight, and not her play has become the focus of the discussion. One blogger has gone so far as to suggest that the USGA is “happy that the fat chick didn’t win.”
I’m not sure what her weight has to do with it. She’s a terrific golfer. I’ve never heard anyone suggest that the PGA Tour is happy that the fat guy doesn’t win (Daly, Stadler—pick one). So why is it an issue with Hurst? (I will grant that Phil Mickelson gets some ribbing for his body type, but no one suggests that the PGA Tour would be happy if he lost).
OK. So Hust is overweight. But I’m sure that she looks a lot more like most of us than Annika. And having worked in the press boxes at major sporting events, I KNOW that she has the same body type as most sports reporters.
And I’m willing to bet that Hurst wil beat 99% of those who mock her 99% of the time on the course.
A more pertinent, and interesting, question, is how does body type affect the swing. She has the same body type as John Daly (and a lot of the people I see driving golf carts around). Is there something in their swings that people of similar proportions should be studying.
David Duval certainly provides an interesting study. The sculpted Duval really didn’t play as well as the more normally proportioned one.
Pat Hurst isn’t the only target. Julie Inkster has come under fire for her facial featuers, and some of the Korean golfers for the shapes of their calves
… the shapes of their calves!! How trivial can you get?
Sports is about performance. If looks had anything to do with sports, then Randy Johnson would have been out of the league years ago. Charles Barkley—the Round Mound of Rebound—would have been laughed at, not respected.
It’s only in women’s sports, it seems that looks become an issue.
And mocking someone’s looks is SO junior high. It’s the kind of thing we work on with the kids at school—to get them to develop some maturity and respect for other people.
In golf, I respect power, accuracy, touch around the greens—golf skills. I ultimately don’t give a fig about what the golfer looks llike.