The public usually sees LPGA and PGA Tour golfers as an illustrious and highly regarded group, quotable and predictable in their demeanor. You rarely hear about an offensive or derogatory slur and, if you do, it is quietly handled by the powers-that-be (unless John Daly is involved and then it becomes fodder).
Michelle Wie, for example, is becoming one of the more quotable golfers on the LPGA Tour. She is highly visible to the media and her public image is full of aplomb. Her most recent stylized excerpt?
"You know, like I always say, dream high and stuff, set your goals up high, and I think it's definitely - I'm not saying it's an easy goal to achieve" ...Stanford?
That's all well and good but how would Michelle Wie, and the LPGA Tour in general, handle a dose of "trash talk" amongst each other? Does any of that occur on or off the course and would it make the LPGA more interesting?
Charles Barkley, during a recent media conference stated, "The best part of sports, number one is winning. The second best part is trash talking with your teammates. But they’re trash talking in every single sport. Let me tell you something, I played golf with Phil Mickelson, Tom Lehman, Billy Mayfair, Dudley Hart. I’ve played with a lot of pros. And if you don’t think there is some trash talking going on out there, you’re crazy."
Would you tune in to more LPGA events if microphones followed the ladies and if you could overhear their little digs at each other? Usually trash talk is all in good fun but highly effective. I think that it would increase ratings!
Carolyn Bivens said she would "love it" if some of the more outspoken Twitterers such as Christina Kim and Morgan Pressel would reach out right in the middle of a match. As Bivens related, "fans are 12-, 13-, 14-year-old girls and boys. They're not waiting for the golf broadcast on Saturday and Sunday."
"They want to know what's going on in the middle of the round," asserted Bivens, "we're going to get out of the collared shirts and khaki pants and make golf chic, hip, happening." The LPGA frontwoman also maintained that Kim and about 30 other LPGA pros will help to make LPGA golf more "relevant".
Pressel was waiting at the 14th teebox during a practice round yesterday, chatting it up with Michelle Wie, another tweeter who has links to several other LPGA golfers including Jeehae Lee and Paige Mackenzie (who mentioned that her 8-iron head just fell off as the grips were being changed!)
Imagine the number of fans who would follow the LPGA if Pressel and Wie went head-to-head during a match and bantered "tweety trash talk" to their fans!
"Hit 'em hard - they'll land somewhere," Pressel may click to MW's Twitter page.
"#1 BABY! you know... its hard 2 b humble," responds Wie, trying so hard to keep her tweets UNDER 140 characters.
Perhaps Carolyn Bivens should encourage this new media correspondence although the PGA Tour does not allow communications devices on the golf course. But, just as the LPGA now allows bloggers to cover events, it is only a matter of time before we see golfers clicking away to their opponents on their qwerty keyboards during an event typing, "You're away Michelle!"
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