Hope you’re keeping warm this holiday season and are dreaming about those wondrous rounds of golf. However, with the college football season wrapping up, and the college basketball season well underway, I thought this was absolutely fitting.
While showing some highlights of young PGA Tour star Justin Thomas, the clever minds of Skratch TV put the amazing pipes of Gus Johnson over them. A tweet by Thomas himself wishing that Johnson covered golf and broadcasted his rounds fueled this beautifully produced clip.
One part that had my dying in laughter was at the 34 second mark. A simple toss of the golf ball to Thomas turned into a wild call from Johnson and the crowd going bonkers. That was hysterical.
Christmas is a great chance to talk about golf, even in the off-season. Nothing brings everyone together quite like golf and Christmas, and I hope this clip from Skratch can make your face light up with glee.
Because remember, even when things seem down, there is always something that will bring a smile to our faces. Golf is one of those wonderful gifts that we can always be appreciated of this holiday season.
So, from the bottom of my heart, I wish you and yours a very happy and safe Merry Christmas. May your golf dreams come true and just be careful where you swing that shiny new wedge of yours!
Be sure to follow me on Twitter @ChGolfRadio! I’m not Santa Claus but..I do have a pack of peanuts!
Now THIS is how you get more people into golf! In May, Europe had their annual European Urban Golf Cup which was held at Queen Elizabeth Park in beautiful London.
France came out on top in the 10-team tournament. Other countries represented were Germany and Ireland among others.
What’s Urban Golf you ask? Some call it Cross-Golf and some simply call it Street Golf. Same rules as traditional golf except the world is your golf course and that’s what makes it so awesome.
It’s steadily starting to grow just like other golf related sports such as Disc Golf and Footgolf. Usually, players aim for targets such as fire hydrants, bike tires (As long as it’s your own bike), walls, or any friggin’ thing else that seems like a good spot to aim a golf ball at.
You use your imagination and create your own course. Think like a golf course designer and ask questions.
How am I going to draw around that little cabin? Should I punch a shot through those trees at the park?
These are the same principles as playing on the real course. Except with Urban Golf/Cross-Golf, you have much more open freedom.
Now if you want a more realistic golfing experience, you can get some golf targets and place them all around the park, town, village, etc and design your own track for your Urban Golfing pleasure.
The balls most Urban Golfers use and what the players in the EUGC use are Almost Golf balls which play like real golf balls but are much softer. They were created by Rob Peterson who now owns Glow Gear which sells glow in the dark golf gear.
On a personal note, I’ve been playing with Almost Golf balls for 5 to 6 years. They are amazing for Urban Golf.
Urban Golf is actually how I got into golf. I got lessons at Randall Oaks Golf Club in the Chicago area but would practice on my own time hitting balls around the elementary school so I always enjoy seeing cool things like this.
What’s makes Urban Golf so wonderful is that it’s so accessible. We all love traditional golf but can be quite expensive making it difficult to introduce it to younger audiences.
I’m not trying to scare anyone off from playing regular golf. Go for it!
But, I think Urban Golf is a wonderful way to get more kids to play golf. It’s so cheap to play.
All you need is one club (preferably a pitching wedge. Sometimes you might need a putter as well if you want to include putting in your rounds/matches), a few soft golf balls and some targets to aim for. That’s it!
It also brings a whole new perspective to the world around you and can be quite adventurous. It’s pretty fun when you start to imagine the possibilities of what can be a golf course in your world.
Sports like basketball and soccer are extremely popular because they are both very easy to pick up and play.
Basketball: Grab basketball, find court.
Soccer: Grab soccer ball (Or football if you’re in another country), find soccer field. If not, use other things as goals such as cones.
Urban Golf/Cross-Golf: Grab golf club, grab golf balls, find spot to play (Which is practically anywhere you freakin’ want within reason. As long as there’s enough space and is not super crowded).
To all traditionalists out there, I know most of you hate things like Urban Golf because it’s not real golf but I have some news for you. Golf was created in the STREETS! That’s right!
Dutch sailors came off a boat and started hitting a stone around the town of St. Andrews and they started counting their strokes. THAT’s how golf came to be.
Eventually, Musselburgh Links was born an then the first 18 hole course, St. Andrews Golf Links.
But it all started with some dudes hitting rocks with sticks around town.
The only issue is Urban Golf is that, like Brian Giuffra wrote for Skratch TV, the U.S. needs an Urban Golf organization and championship PRONTO! If anything, have a National team so we can have a squad to root for on their way to the EUGC title. All you need is some shirts, hats, etc for the fans.
C’MON U.S.! Let’s get this ball rolling and get an Urban Golf organization started! Would be an excellent opportunity for high schools and colleges to start Urban Golf clubs as well!
Check out info on the European Urban Golf Cup at eugc.org!
Online TV networks have become quite a popular trend with several networks being created on YouTube as broadcasts. Then came the release of 120 Sports which has quickly grown and became a popular spot for up-to-date sports news with live internet TV roundtable discussions and social media shows.
Well, the PGA Tour also decided to go this route by creating their own online TV network called “Skratch TV” which will launch this Spring. They will be working with Bedrocket to make this happen. Bedrocket created KickTV which is a popular MLS (Major League Soccer. Go Fire!) channel on YouTube.
“As younger fans find new ways to follow their favorite sports, it’s important to deliver great golf content to platforms that they use and in a voice that resonates with them,” said Tim Finchem, PGA TOUR Commissioner via PGATour.com. “We believe Skratch TV will provide a tremendous new platform to effectively speak to this audience.”
The goal of Skratch is to bring a brash, funny, entertaining new network for the new, short attention span world we live in. It brings a whole new light to golf and will bring to non-golf fans on board who were at least somewhat interested in the game.
They had a beta for Skratch during the Waste Management Phoenix Open which kinda inspired this move. The beta was also available across all main social media platforms during the Farmers Insurance Open.
I personally love this move. This will help bring that “cool” factor to golf that I’ve been shouting about ever since I got into the game almost a decade ago. Although I picked up the game and loved it, I grew up in a neighborhood where swag was a huge priority for young people and I built that mentality. I love golf but it needs something with a little more of a swagger to it and that’s what this looks to accomplish.
However, I’m already seeing social media posts and other posts claiming that this was a move of desperation since Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson have been hibernating lately. That’s a load of crap, golf needed something like this years ago in my opinion, even at the time when Tiger and Phil were dominating and filling the needs of fans.
This was a great idea with or without Tiger and Phil playing well. It’s something to help keep people glued to golf and help young fans learn about the new loads of talent flooding the Tour.
This is better instead of relying only on guys like Tiger, Phil and Ernie to help keep fans eyes on golf. Because as soon as guys like that fall, fans will leave and that will never change.
But with this new online network, it’ll keep people coming back because it’s constantly moving and it’s not taking breaks in between you know what I’m sayin’? And again, I think this network will be crucial to help get the new talent the respect they deserve and help younger fans and casual fans get familiar with these players.
The aforementioned 120 Sports which is really the first truly popular online only sports TV network, went out to congratulate the PGA Tour on Skratch TV via Twitter:
So with the new, insane EA Sports PGA Tour video game coming out and Skratch TV coming this Spring, there’s no doubt that golf is in a great place at a great time. You want to reel in more people to this game? You want people to stop calling golf “boring”? Well this will most definitely do it.
The best part? Skratch will be going across all of the main social media platforms including mobile phones. So fans can take the fun of Skratch with them wherever they go.
Golf is going to be juuusst fine my friends, do not fear!
Follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio because I’m weird and I love golf and video games! Put it simply, I’m a swagged out nerd!