by Jeff Skinner
For years one of the complaints about the golfers on the PGA Tour is that they all were the same flavor: vanilla. Gone are the characters of yesteryear and this generation is a bunch of boring white, republicans. That’s not the case with Bubba Watson.
Watson is a new breed of golfer that plays hard while on the course but doesn’t see golf as his entire life. He like to have fun, plain and simple. He likes to speak his mind also and he did so in today’s press conference at The PGA Championship.
Right off the bat he was asked about the Steve Williams interview and his response was classic Bubba. He laughed and said “I made a bogey, bogey last two holes last week so I could care less what Stevie and all them are talking about.” He went on, “He said it was his best week, it might have been, it might have been his best week. We don’t know. He caddied for a guy that played awesome. He said the fans were cheering for him. He said his family was happy for him back home. So obviously it was a good week for him. He’s trying to get over a down part, he played with a guy he won 63 time with, he got let go. You’d be upset with that too. Maybe Adam pays more, I don’t know” he said with a smirk.
He was asked him about his Twittering and what his goal was using social media. He looked a bit confounded and said laughing, “My goal…to show how dumb I really am. I mean you know, I like to have fun. The thing is… the media probably doesn’t talk about it that much…but golf is boring.” Take that Mr. Finchem. He went on, “You know as a whole. We see on television, we see the guys focusing. We see the guys bearing down trying to win golf tournaments, trying to hit good shots. I do it too. I lose focus really quick. So, on a golf course I have to put my head down and not think about what’s going on around me. I just have to put my head down and go to the next hole.”
“So with social media, Twitter and all these things is to show the fun side. To show that we are fun. That we do have fun, we do have a life.” He was asked who the best on Twitter was and of course he laughed and said his buddy Rickie Fowler and Ian were second best, “First is me for sure. It’s always about me isn’t it” he said with a sarcastic smile.
He talked about his relationship with his young sidekick Fowler and admitted that he was learning from the kid. Although at first he did say (Fowler) wasn’t that cool. “One thing about Rickie, I’ve never heard him say anything bad about anybody, no matter what happens, he doesn’t judge anybody,” Watson said. “He’s nice to everybody. He’s just a great kid. I’m older than him but I look up to him in that way, just like Aaron Baddeley. I’ve never heard Aaron Baddeley say anything bad about anybody.”
“Rickie’s got a great quality and he’s got a quality with the way he plays golf; there’s no fear. He brings the dirt bike to the golf course. He has no fear and he doesn’t worry what you say, what the next guy says; he’s going to play golf.”
“Me and him never talk about golf,” Watson explained. “… The only time I’ve ever talked to him about golf is last week, I asked him about the mental part of the game. I said, ‘Man, I’m weak mentally.’ And he told me what he thought about. He told me what he tries to do. And I listened to him and that’s the only time we’ve ever talked about golf. I’ve never talked to him about, he needs to win or anything. He knows he needs to win. He wants to win.”
The young Fowler had some wise advice for Bubba,“He told me to quit being a baby and just play good golf and quit crying all the time and blaming other people, or blaming the wind or blaming that didn’t do right, got a bad bounce. So he told me to suck it up and be a man.”
Asked about the strength of the European players and the effect on the PGA Tour he said, “I think it’s great. I think it’s great for the game. But you know it’s sad, we keep pitting these flags on everybody. I’m 15th in the World Ranking right, there’s fourteen guys ahead of me. I could care less where they’re from. I don’t care what flag they have by them. There’s fourteen guys ahead of me, I’m trying to get to number one in the world. Most of them have a house in the U.S anyway.”
Surprisingly he thinks that courses are too long now. Here’s one of the tour’s long drivers (2nd in distance) and he thinks, “The courses are going the wrong way. Let’s build tighter fairways and higher rough and shorten the golf courses so were all hitting irons in there. I’m still going to be missing it in the rough anyway, I don’t care. If it’s narrow or wide open I’m still going to be hitting hit in the rough.”
“We’re the only people changing our fields. Football field is not changing. Basketball court is not changing. Just make tighter fairways and higher rough. That’s the way I feel, make everybody have a chance.”
There you have it, the gospel according to Bubba: the courses are too long, golf is boring, he’s tops on Twitter and he just wants to have fun. Mission accomplished Bubba.