Some background first: The Wichita Open is a stop on the Korn Ferry Tour which despite its name is sadly not a Nu-Metal concert on a boat but rather the minor league version of the PGA Tour. There are roughly 5 million dudes currently trying to be “Pro Golfers” so any slot in any tournament on any tour (and there’s A LOT more Tours than just the PGA and KFT) is HIGHLY coveted. The money in Pro Golf is so absurd that dudes bank half a milly on the Korn Ferry and still can’t crack into the big leagues.
So all that’s to say tensions run high at these events and apparently there was legit fisticuffs on the course over a lost ball during the “Monday Qualifier” at this week’s Wichita Open:
For those not in the know, a “Monday Qualifier” is a one day Tournament for a precious few slots in the main tournament later that week. We are talking about 100+ guys competing for 2 or maybe 3 spots. You get in and you make a few grand. Don’t get in and you just paid a shit ton of travel expenses for nada. So yeah these guys at Monday Q’s – especially on the minor league tours – are literally playing for their livelihoods.
Now it’s common golf courtesy that if your playing partner has put a ball astray that you take a moment to help them locate their ball. it’s just what you do. And sure we are talking about fierce competition here, it’s cutthroat on the Korn Ferry, so I can see why Smith would be loathe to help but you have you at least pretend to look for the dude’s ball. Walk over, wack some weeds with your club, give it 30 seconds, then go back to your ball. What makes the scene extra crazy is that Smith not only doesn’t help but he goes the extra mile of then criticizing his partner’s play and that is ABSOLUTELY WILD for Pro Golf. Outside a tournament guys may talk smack but on the course EVERYONE (even Patrick MF’ing Reed) is as “Class Act” and can do no wrong even if they are cheating in your face so to have a player in tournament tell his partner he sucks is more shocking then the fist fight honestly. And the extra mustard on this one of having the guy’s dad on his bag and fending off people with a putter is just pure Happy Gilmore shit.