In light of the penalty Webb Simpson incurred during the final round of the Zurich Classic, should the U.S. Golf Association change Rule 18-2b? Rex Hoggard and Jason Sobel weigh in with their takes.
By REX HOGGARD
Rule 18-2b is not a bad edict, just out of date, which is why the U.S. Golf Association said on Monday it has been reviewing it since at least 2004.
And why it must be changed, sooner rather than later.
Know this about James Frederick Webb Simpson, he is a devout Christian and a fierce competitor with a ridiculously long name.
What he is not is a rabble-rouser, which is why his pointed comments late Sunday regarding the archaic rule that cost him a stroke, and probably his first PGA Tour title, should not be taken lightly or out of context.
“The problem with the rule is you get greens like this that they get pretty bare, almost like this table top, wind's blowing, balls can wiggle and move so easily,” said Simpson, who was penalized a stroke when his ball moved on the 15th green at the Zurich Classic.
When the forefathers concocted 18-2b a sheep’s appetite decided green speeds, which in modern terms hovered just north of scruffy.
At next month’s U.S. Open, officials plan to run Congressional’s greens at 14 to 14 ½ on the Stimpmeter. At those speeds it takes a sneeze, not a zephyr to move a ball.
At those speeds, it’s time for 18-2b to catch up.
By JASON SOBEL
Webb Simpson was the victim of an unfortunate incident that cost him his first career PGA Tour win.