John Renslow: Watching the champions
How many people that watch the NFL on television actually play football? Almost zero if they’re under the age of 25. The same could be said for all major sports.
Golf, however, is a beautiful thing, essentially a cradle-to-grave sport that we can enjoy whether we watch or play.
Watching LeBron James dunk, Steph Curry peal off a long-distance three pointer, or Mike Trout crease one for about 500 feet, does not make us think, “Gee, I could do that.”
In our great game, we can make that putt, hit that sand shot, or knock one close to the hole. Sometimes we can do it just like the professionals.
Likely, none of us have ever shot some hoops in Madison Square Garden, caught a pass in the Coliseum, or stood on the mound at Yankee Stadium.
Yet, many golf courses played on tour are accessible to all of us. In Northern California, Harding Park, Silverado, Edgewood, and Pebble Beach host professional, if not global, events.
Fabulous tracks on the PGA schedule could also be recreational vacation spots on the golfer’s calendar.
This week we get to watch one of these from afar.
You see, some clever individual decided that a good way to kick off the new year was a relatively small event with the world’s best players. A warm spot, with fairly predictable weather, was chosen and the Tournament of Champions (TOC) was born.
Just as the title states, one must be a winner to play. More specifically, a champion from last season’s schedule.
There are 37 entrants for the 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions.
Worthy of note is the strength of the field. That may sound ironic as they are all tour event winners. However, in previous years, several of the top 10 did not play.
Yet, this year’s cast is going to be even more fun to watch. Not only are four of the top 5 players in the world in the field, (Jon Rahm, Colin Morikawa, Patrick Cantlay, and Bryson DeChambeau), Phil Mickelson is teeing it up. He has decided to bring the family and play some golf, after many years of taking the winter off.
It is a wonderful event, one of the best vacation spots, some beautiful golf courses in warm weather, and the views are spectacular.
But, be careful letting your spouse or partner watch it with you, they’ll be searching the real estate listings and checking airfares!
John Renslow is a PGA professional, VP of Yugi Golf Management, and provides golf instruction at local courses
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