#PGA stars not thrilled with being mic’d up for Charles Schwab Challenge

#PGA stars not thrilled with being mic’d up for Charles Schwab Challenge

June 9, 2020 | 5:39pm | Updated June 9, 2020 | 5:46pm

FORT WORTH, Texas — Jon Rahm laughed at the mere thought.

As players registered for this week’s Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial Country Club, they’ve been asked by PGA Tour officials if they are agreeable to being mic’d up during a tournament round for the CBS TV broadcast.

“You’re asking me?” Rahm asked on Tuesday with a laugh and a bit of incredulity.

Rahm has developed a reputation as having one of the hottest tempers on the Tour and is prone to spitting out a four-letter word or two on occasion.

“Selfishly, because who I am and because I know how I am on the golf course, I wouldn’t support it, because there would need to be a 20- or 30- second delay,” Rahm said. “And I’m not the only one. A lot of people swear or cuss … I don’t think it would be the best thing to do. I don’t think there’s any reason why we should be mic’d up from shot to shot.

“I see the point, but I think people expect us to talk about more interesting things than we really do. So I don’t think it would be as entertaining as people think. It all depends. If somebody decides to do it and it really works out and it’s fun, cool, go ahead.

“But I’m not speaking of many interesting things on the golf course.’’

Another player who doesn’t sound comfortable about being mic’d up is Justin Thomas, who said, “I would not wear a mic, no. That’s not me. What I talk about with Jimmy [his caddie] and what I talk about with the guys in my group is none of anybody else’s business, no offense.

“As close as those mics are on the tees and the greens, and as close as they get the boom mics during competition, I feel like I basically am mic’d up. I can’t say some of the stuff I’d usually say. It’s not that it’s bad [but] if I want somebody to know what I’ve said, I’ll say it in a press conference, I’ll say it in an interview or put it out on social media.”

Interestingly, Thomas sounded like a natural on camera when he served as an on-course reporters for the charity match between Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning and Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady last month at Medalist.

The mic’d up player element in that match was highly successful because of the personalities involved, with Mickelson trash-talking, Manning chirping with some humor, Brady chronicling his struggles and Woods dropping in a comment or two on occasion.

Conversely, in the charity skins game involving Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Rickie Fowler and Matthew Wolff, their mic’d up element fell flat with not a lot of colorful banter.

Fowler is expected to be one of the players mic’d up this week for at least some period of time.

Though he’s not opposed to it, Jordan Spieth, who’s paired with Fowler, is another player who didn’t sound 100 percent on board with being mic’d up. He sounded more lukewarm.

“Am I open to it? Sure, I’m open to it, but I think I would kind of want to see how things are going first personally with it before,’’ Spieth said Tuesday. “I think if anything, could be a distraction personally to your play, but I also see what an advantage it could have for the game if you’re able to mic some guys up, especially given there’s no crowd noise, so you get a little extra commentary from the players.

“For me, I’d probably be quieter than I normally am if I’m mic’d up so I don’t keep on rambling, which might be a good thing for me.’’


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