Wie Disqualification Has Bad Smell

I’ve been reading about last weekend’s disqualification of Michelle Wie, and the more I think about it, the more I think it smells.

Now, I wasn’t there, but I find it hard to believe that no one at the time—no one in the audience, or the announcers, or the guys in the booth watching the feeds, noticed that it was closer to the hole. I can’t seem to find any evidence that people were calling in from home, as they have with other televised rules infractions.

And clearly, Wie didn’t think it was. Nor did her caddy. If they had any doubt at all, it would have been no matter to resolve the problem at the time.

No, it took a Sports Illustrated reporter a whole day to figure it out. And even after a review of the tape, it still wasn’t clear.

Now the truth may be that the ball was closer to hole. (Although it strains credulity that they could determine that a day later). But it certainly looks an awful lot like LPGA officials doing their best to put the 16-year-old non-LPGA member in her place.

If would have been a lot better for officials to decide that the evidence was inconclusive (I dont’ see how, a day later, it could have been otherwise) and defer to the honesty of the player. Instead, they cast a shadow on Wie’s first professional experience.

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16 thoughts on “Wie Disqualification Has Bad Smell”

  1. Michael Bamberger is a self righteous and pompous jerk, for waiting a day and “then deciding” he was the moral guardian of the “rules of golf”.  Believe me if it was an other established lady PGA player, his “conscience” wouldn’t have been bothered so much overnight.  My only wish was that this happened to someone like Laurie Davies and she appropriately responded by wrapping her driver around the neck of this “self aggrandizing, attention seeking” media twirp.

  2. It does smack of LPGA having their moment of “If she wants to play our game, let’s make her play our game,” but more likely officials were intimidated by the thought of being looked upon by readers of Sports Illustrated as the ones who let Michelle Wie slide by on a potential rules violation.

  3. I agree. Something just doesn’t smell right about it. What other sport would DQ someone on a violation a day after it happened. Cycling or track could do something like that based on a drug test, but that’s conclusive evidence. How they can go out to the course the day after and determine where the ball was and where it was dropped is beyond me. I’ve never heard of officials measuing off a drop before in my life. Did they walk it off or measure it with a laser? Either way could produce results on either end of the issue.

  4. SI should let Bamberger get on with his real career choice of flipping hamburgers.

    I mean, gimmie a break, Wie is a marquis draw to events like this where she brings in ticket buyers and media attention to tournaments that only have a handfull of patrons anyway.

    The officials should have said; “day late dollar short pal”.

    Where did you drop the ball?

    Here, there, who knows where.

    Perhaps a little benifit of the doubt could have been used.

    Hell, it’s the course’s fault and the LPGA for not having an official there to officiate.

    The idea of the namby pamby former caddie, turned reporter, causing this kind of controversey from 50 feet away is remarkable.

    The remark is B**lSh*t!

  5. I agree with Michael’s and Nick’s comments 100%.
    I also don’t think anyone should be blaming the caddie.
    Michelle has taken the high road and again she should be complemented for her professionalism, so obviously her “pro” debut was a success.
    Hawaii fans however have long memories and as SI subscriptions from here are getting cancelled by the minute, they can look for somewhere else to shoot their swimsuit issue as we’re not buying it…
    As for Bamberger, isn’t it interesting that his book gets published in a couple of weeks hmmm…..

  6. Yeah we all know the rules guess it took Michael Bamberger a day to review the rules.  How close was Michael?  Could Michael had said something to the caddy?  I know the offical was pressured by the media (big Michael – SI).  Does Michael not like Michelle?

    I agree with all of you and the rest of you.  How many people were out there on Saturday?  Reporters, TV, Camera people, gallery, and players.  Someone else must have seen the problem.

    Well like Michelle said, “she will call an offical next time”.

  7. I agree with all of you. 2 Big questions that need to be answered here.

    1. If Michael Bamberger is such a professional then why did he wait till after Michelle signed her card? Full knowing that once she signs it there is no going back to fix the error.

    2. Why did the LPGA even accept this information 48 hours after the fact?? Like Stephen said above “a day late and a dollar short”.

    Well I just cancelled my SI subscription just now and not even the bikini issue can bring me back. Sorry SI but you have a UNPROFESSIONAL working there.

  8. Why allow an outside influence to alter the outcome of any sporting event?  Wie had an entourage following her every move, no one saw the infraction but a sports writer?  Would a sports writer, or a fan influence a call in the NFL, MLB, NHL, NCAA – I don’t think so!  Leave the people behind the ropes out of the process!
    Play on!

  9. Wie’s caddy is primarily at fault.  He should have supervised every aspect of that drop to make sure it was legal.  In addition to blowing the drop he consistenly gave her bad advice on laying up on Par 5’s when she needed to play them well in order to have a chance. 

    I hope the Wie’s are looking for a new Caddie—Tiger has always made quick work of the supporting cast that wasn’t cutting it any more like Fluff Cowan and Butch Harmon, and Michelle should do the same.

    That was inexcusable – the equivalent of having 15 clubs in the bag.

  10. Michelle Wie was caught cheating yet everyone is after the only person dignified enough to bring it to the forefront.  Wie dropped her ball on a patch of grass…had she dropped where she should have dropped she would have had to drop in the sand.  Rules officals said that her drop was over a foot closer to the hole. I have played golf for 25 years and know that you can not possibly mistake a drop by over a foot. Anyone that knows anything about golf knows that this was a deliberate attempt to take an unfair advantage.  Don’t shoot the messenger (reporter).  Can’t understand fot the life of me why everyone is rushing to defend Michelle Wie when she plainly cheated in her first tournament.  Penalties should be called on yourself (see Bobby Jones), but with Wie this was obviously not going to happen, so the reporter did the right thing when someone is in violation of the rules. happenatiilites

  11. I don’t think the issue is if Wie did something wrong.  It seems as though she has.  If at that point she signs an incorrect scorecard, great disqualify her or anybody else who does so.

    The issue is that the reporter waited so long to bring it to the attention of someone that would do something about it.

    It should have been made known before she signed her card so officials could have questioned her about it.

  12. the caddie is at fault. the caddie’s job is not to just carry the bag. he does everything from cleaning the ball, lining up putts, gauging the yardage, even pulling out bananas and water bottles for their players, so why shouldn’t he be more involved in the ball drop? if he is a 12 veteran (that’s a long time), he should’ve advised Wie to take another drop or called a rules official if he had any doubt, because this was after all, her first event. also, a good caddie is not just a mechanical drone, a good caddie knows his/her player, and gives good advice or motivation when he feels it is appropriate. being on the bag for 12 years, i’m sure Johnston has seen a lot of ball drops and rulings of all sorts. his experience and knowledge should’ve dictated the situation. even seasoned pros on the pga tour are not familiar with all the rules, let alone a 16 year old. for god sakes, isn’t this why caddies get 10%?
    as for Bamberger, the dude should’ve spoken up sooner, if he was going to speak at all. i mean, be a man about it. he did the “white thing”, not the “right thing”.

  13. caddy is definitely the key figure to blame. why haven’t the stupid media including the golf channel pointed this out?

  14. Granted that Bamberger should have brought up the bad drop prior to Wie signing her card. But the LPGA really is the one with mud on their faces. Wie’s a great draw for the LPGA and people are watching an LPGA tournament for once.  When the video review of the drop was inconclusive, they should have dropped the issue. They look so amateurish the way they ended up ruling on this.

  15. LPGA is a bunch of old windbags who complain about not making the money the men do (forgetting of course they’re not nearly as good) and when they finally get someone like Wie who has the star power to increase ratings and revenues all they do is attack her.  This is a joke – for now on I’m only watching Men’s tournies Wie plays in, at least they treat her just like any other competitor. LPGA dykes can keep their unpopular tour to themselves.



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