Nicklaus Goes To The Dark Side

Jack Nicklaus has been seduced by the Dark Side. This past weekend, the Golden Bear hosted a 12 hole tournament in which the cups were twice as large as regulation. He says the goal is to make golf more fun.

The twelve holes I can deal with. In fact, I’ve often thought that was the perfect number. But Super Sized holes? Heresy.

The size of the holes isn’t the problem with golf. It’s the length of the courses.

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3 thoughts on “Nicklaus Goes To The Dark Side”

  1. This should be a ridiculous item of the week.

    On the big hole- If someone wants to play with non-conforming holes, why don’t they just play with small balls?  Why not just implement a 2-putt max rule?  So it is more fun to get a birdie with a big hole.  Whoop-T-Do.  You didn’t do anything.  Lets make a basketball hoop the size of a field goal and call it more fun. 

    On the 12 holes.  Golf already has a short version, it is called 9 holes.  9 holes is right around 2-hour pace – 12 holes is just under 3 hours.  So you have time for 3 hours, but you can’t make 4 for a full 18. 

    And so what does this do to USGA handicaps.  Can you still have a handicap if you are playing with big holes?  12 holes is easy enough to solve, because you could mathematically come up with a differential for the round by applying 1.5 to the 12 hole differential.  But how do you adjust slope for the fact you were playing with a goofy hole?

    Further, the big hole is a different game than real golfers play.  You could also just play on flat greens, or greens that funnel to the cup.  So if you play on a muni normally which uses big holes, are you going to go play in a tournament? 

    How frustrating is it going to be if you play normally on greens which are completely bogus and then go play on a regulation green?  That will take the fun out of the game.

  2. For me, 12 is a good number, but its not about the time. Nine never feels like enough. Eighteen is often too much. Like Goldilock’s bears, 12 is just right.

    Timewise, when I play in the early afternoon or at twilight, I knock off 9 in about an hour and a half or less. With no one in front of me tonight, I finished in an hour and fifteen (all fairways and greens, baby). Three more would generally extend my outing to two to two fifteen.

  3. You are talking about playing when the course is open, I assume, not when it is full.  At a course with more than a few groups out, your pace would be at 2:10 for 9 holes – no? 

    And if 12 holes was a full game, then 6 would be half a round, now that really wouldn’t be enough!  (although that is usually what I play if I try and squeeze it in at lunch).

    BTW- you do have it right on length.  That is the real problem.  Tee it forward is the right idea.


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