From the Rough

Golf without discretion

Jerry Rice once again makes a mockery of the Nationwide Tour

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Jerry Rice had a goal in mind before Thursday’s first round of the Nationwide Tour’s BMW Charity Pro-Am; he wanted to make the cut and prove the naysayers wrong once again.

Cristal was going to be on ice for every player in the field after Friday’s round, a way of celebrating his first made cut as a professional. It was supposed to be a monumental occasion for Rice — especially after the way he played earlier in the year at his first professional event in Hayward, Ca., missing the cut at 17- over-par 159.

After Thursday’s first round at the BMW, it’s safe to say the Cristal can be put away until his next event. His opening round 92 was not only the worst score in the field, it also marked the highest score ever seen at the Nationwide Tour event that first began back in 1992.

“I don’t want to talk about golf right now,” Rice said to reporters before leaving the course. “Had enough.”

I think the feeling is mutual, Jerry. While Jerry Rice’s presence on the Nationwide Tour may be a breath of fresh air for a tour in need of a shot in the arm, Rice clearly isn’t the savior the tour is looking for. If anything, he’s making a mockery of the Nationwide Tour each and every time he tees it up.

Who really cares if he’s paying to play in these events. He’s still taking an exemption away from a player that definitely deserves the spot more than he does. You can only let the circus show go on for so long before you start to alienate the players on your tour.

After Thursday’s first round, it’s safe to say the Nationwide Tour is going in that direction. Could you imagine having to be paired with Rice in the opening two rounds, and watch him hack it around the course? It’d be enough to make any pro go mad.

The Jerry Rice train wreck has gone on long enough. The 92 should be enough to force the tour committee to wake-up, open their eyes and see that the circus can only be fun and amusing for so long


Written by Jonathan Wall

05/14/2010 at 12:39 pm

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