PGA Tour Crack Down With New ‘Brooksy’ Rule

Bill Shakespeare once asked the question: “What’s in a name?”

If you’re Bryson DeChambeau, the answer is “A lot of frustration.”

DeChambeau has been the PGA Tour’s lightning rod of controversy in recent months thanks to his feud/spat/quarrel with fellow long driver Brooks Koepka. What started with Koepka’s frustration over DeChambeau’s perceived slow play at the Omega Dubai Desert in January 2019, continued with a not-so-subtle shot about BDC’s rapid weight and strength gain and then hit high gear this past May with that exasperated Koepka eyeroll in a video that was never meant to be released.

This thing has escalated into golf’s version of Taylor Swift vs. Kim Kardashian, or Taylor Swift vs. Calvin Harris, or Taylor Swift vs. … well, you get the picture.

At first, many of us were excited to see PGA Players showing emotions like real, live human beings. The (not so) playful Twitter jabs by Koepka and DeChambeau’s good natured responses breathed life into what can be at times a pretty stoic sport at the Professional Level.

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And the Tour itself didn’t seem to mind the attention.

But now, on the eve of the Ryder Cup, the Tour finds itself worrying about more than just two teammates who genuinely seem to dislike each other.

The fans.

As the galleries grow in ever-increasing numbers, fans are getting in on the action, chirping the 2020 U-S Open champ after almost every shot.

After a heartbreaking, six-hole playoff loss in the BMW Championship to Patrick Cantlay (did someone say stoic?), DeChambeau got into a confrontation with a fan who had used Koepka’s name in a pejorative manner whilst referring to our man Bryson … that is to say: The dude yelled “Brooksy!”

Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

Now, one well-lubricated fan yelling “Brooksy” isn’t a big deal.

But when you hear it time and time again, you begin to understand DeChambeau’s frustration. It’s reached a point where Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan has stepped in, saying “That has been going on for an extended period of time. To me, at this point, it’s disrespectful, and that’s the kind of behavior we’re not going to tolerate going forward.”

Which brings us to the crux of the matter.

When does playful chirping cross the line into personal attack?

Rob Carr/Getty Images

There’s always been heckling in golf to some degree but it’s only in recent years that we’ve heard fans screaming “Mashed Potatoes!” – or worse – immediately after contact.

Some would tell DeChambeau – who, truth be told, has brought a lot of this upon himself with his antics — to simply ignore the taunting like other athletes in other sports.

Others will decry the lack of decorum and respect shown by the sunburned masses surrounding the tee box.

I come down on the side of the former.

Whether we want to admit it or not, golf is different now. After more than a year locked down, fans are back out in droves. They pay their money and are allowed to cheer or boo any way they see fit. Threatening them with expulsion over something that is – at worst – annoying, probably isn’t the best way to attract new fans to the sport.

And let’s face it.

“Brooksy!” isn’t the worst thing that’s ever been yelled on a golf course.

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20 thoughts on “PGA Tour Crack Down With New ‘Brooksy’ Rule”

  1. Belligerence and abuse have no place in golf; they are unwelcome anywhere. People whose behaviors intentionally diminish others should be invited, in no uncertain terms, to leave.

  2. I believe people should not be able to shout obscenities, or anything pertaining to race, colour, religion or gender. But to say “Brooksy” and have that considered for be tossed out of a tournament is ridiculous.

    I find people shouting “In the hole” when people tee off or play any shot into the green far more offensive.

    1. There is no way that will be allowed at the Masters which should be considered the gold standard for fan behaviour.
      The idiots yelling brooksie will either stop or kicked out.

  3. Your article gives us readers his opinion (which I don’t care about) yet fails to explain to readers what the “Brooksey” rule is. Try again.

  4. For a guy whose reputation was being a self absorbed jerk, BDC should be prepared to grow a pair instead of crying to mama (PGA). If it turns ugly and confrontional, that’s a whole different story and unruly fans could, and should, be removed.

  5. I am an avid golfer and student of the game. Boorish fans contribute NOTHING TO THE GAME or its enjoyment especially if other fans are also golfers.
    Golf is a singular game in that it requires a high degree of concentration over a long period of time. Anything that interferes with that requirement, should not be permitted.

  6. Golf requires extreme focus and no distractions to perform at ones best in professional golf. Hecklers should not be tolerated and escorted of the course . The mere suggestion the it’s part of the game and a golfer should just ignore it , is bullshit.

  7. If The Masters can control their “patrons”, then why not other tournaments. Golf is different than “bleacher” sports. Individual taunts are readily heard. Fans are more rude and sickeningly conformist. They all want to hear their voices on TV.
    I’m all for ejecting guilty parties. At least the “Bible” guy in the Nicklaus era was quiet!

  8. I agree with Larry S. post. Obscenities or racial comments should not be tolerated. But to yell “Brooksy” and possibly be asked to leave is over the top. These are professional players and should be able to handle it. I am sure if the player does not show it bothers him it will soon just fade away

  9. Sorry I disagree when you start chirping at someone when he is making a living at playing golf the distraction slight or large could make a difference in making or missing a shot due to a lack of concentration because of the heckling. It now seems that American fans believe because they bought a ticket it gives them the right to do whatever they want. True fans respect players for their ability regardless if they like them or not. I’m sure if I came to their work and started heckling them they would consider that being unacceptable, stop making excuse for idiots.

  10. Golf has always been and is supposed to be a game of gentlemen , or should I say gentle people. In my opinion, there is no room for heckling, which should be discouraged, even if it means ejecting those who engage in the practice.

    Recent years have seen more boisterous behavior become acceptable, which I find boorish and obnoxious. People used to have a lot more class than is exhibited now during tournament play. Allowing the type of behavior we see at the 17 th hole at the Waste Management in Scottsdale has cheapened the game and opened the door for the classless “comments” and booing of players. Nip it in the bud now and eject the perpetrators until they can behave appropriately!

  11. I don’t think “Brooksy “ is offensive in any way. Fans need to stay quiet when the pros are making their shots but after that a little heckling is to be expected especially for BDC. In my opinion BRC is the biggest pouter on the PGA and he should stop whining and try to have a little fun on the course for a change. Fans might warm up to him if he smiled once in a while.

  12. I think that Bryson has brought this on himself. He yells at cameramen, argues with tour officials and is generally condescending in his view of anyone but himself.

    That said, I think that fans who want to hear themselves on TV highlights, or worst yet try to affect the outcome of an event (it’s what happens when you promote and partner with online gambling) by yelling like idiots should be removed. They guy who yells “mashed potatoes” should be outside the gate along with the Brooksy yeller.

  13. You should ask Jack Nicklaus how he felt in the 60’s and 70’s when people heckled him because they saw him as a threat to Arnold Palmer. Those taunts were far worse than “Brooksy”, seriously Bryson, if you can’t handle the chirping (which you clearly can’t), then don’t make stupid comments during the interview of a fellow “professional”. And when you call out the quality/performance of your club manufacturer, the same company that has built their branding around you, who pays you millions of $’s, maybe you should take a look in the mirror and see where the real problem lies! Grow up and shut up, you would never see Palmer or Nicklaus behaving so immaturity.

  14. If I want rude behavior I would go to a hockey game. I did not miss the fans when COVID-19 kept them away. Golf does not need to attract more fans to tour events.

  15. Think your full if it. I want to watch golf for golf’s sake; not listening to a bunch of chirping fans. When it effects the players game it is WRONG. Remember when golf was considered to be Gentleman’s game.
    Gentlemen meaning character.

  16. To me, Bryson must have been babied growing up. I personally don’t like what he has done to the game of golf. I dread my grandchildren watching him or hearing about his journey. Golf is more art than power! As for the chirping screaming should not be allowed, post it on the ticket. If it’s disturbing, out your go, discreetly. Don’t lose the class and integrity of the game. The players can say what they want off the grounds but on playing field they have to respect the game.

  17. as long as explitatives or derogatory words are not used you should be able to say what you want. You pay to get in you shouldn’t be told what you can or cannot say within boundaries that are reasonable. These guys are PROS and should be able to handle heckling with grace. Not everyone is a fan of Bryce and he should of handled it better.