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Rickie Fowler, Ian Poulter Called Overrated in PGA Tour Pro Anonymous Survey

May 5, 2015

We gave PGA, Champions and LPGA Tour pros anonymity.

They gave us their unfiltered opinions on the most overrated players in golf, the best (and worst!) courses on Tour, the chances of them crossing the aisle to cast a vote for Hillary Clinton and whether they’ve ever tried to outsmart the person who checks the hotel minibar.

Here are their responses, beginning with PGA Tour pros:

Who is more likely to win 19 majors: Tiger or Rory?


Tiger: 76%

Rory: 24%

Was Dustin Johnson’s leave from the game voluntary?


Yes: 9%

No: 73%

Don’t know/No Comment: 18%

Loose lips: “I think it was voluntary in the sense of ‘Take six months off or don’t come back.’

Will Phil Mickelson win a U.S. Open?


Yes: 53%

No: 47%

Loose lips: “Yes, he will. This year at Chambers Bay.”

Let’s say a Tour player were to concoct a bizarre kidnapping story to cover up his own drunken misbehavior. On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 being the least), how likely was Robert Allenby to be that player?


1: 0%

2: 2%

3: 0%

4: 4%

5: 16%

6: 9%

7: 12%

8: 26%

9: 13%

10: 16%

Who is the most overrated player in golf?


Ian Poulter (above): 24%

Rickie Fowler: 24%

Bubba Watson: 12%

Hunter Mahan: 8%

Other: 32%

Loose lips: “Bubba, by a mile and a half.”

“Overrated players tend to be guys who hit it great but don’t putt well.”

The most underrated?


Me: 11%

Bill Haas (above): 11%

Bubba Watson: 8%

Jordan Spieth: 8%

Charles Howell III: 5%

Graham DeLaet: 5%

Zach Johnson: 5%

Justin Thomas: 5%

Other: 42%

Loose lips: “Tiger. People don’t understand how good he actually is.”

Will the task force make a difference in the U.S.’s efforts to turn around its fortunes in the Ryder Cup?


Yes: 38%

No: 62%

Loose lips: “Ryder Cup task force? What’s that?”

Who should be the next U.S. captain?


Fred Couples: 48%

Paul Azinger: 20%

Phil Mickelson: 10%

David Toms: 10%

Steve Stricker: 3%

Other: 9%

Loose lips: “Who cares?”

If Hillary Clinton could guarantee your taxes would be cut in half, but the Republican presidential candidate would keep them the same, would you vote for her?


Yes: 57%

No: 43%

Loose lips: “If she ever said that, she’d be lying.”

How much would you pay each year to make one more 20-foot putt a round?


$0: 13%

$50K: 10%

$100K: 38%

$250K: 10%

$400K: 4%

$500K: 7%

$1M: 15%

$1M+: 3 %

Loose lips: “Man, I don’t even make one a week. I would cry!”

“I would pay half a gazillion!”

Would you rather be the best putter on Tour or the best driver?


Putter: 86%

Driver: 14%

Loose lips: “That’s a stupid question. The best putter always wins.”

Should the U.S. Women’s Open have the same purse as the men’s, as in tennis?


Yes: 22%

No: 78%

Loose lips: “If they have equal ticket sales, yes.”

Who will win more majors: Jordan Spieth or Patrick Reed?


Jordan: 79%

Patrick: 21%

Have you played Pine Valley?


Yes: 20%

No: 80%

Does the golf ball go too far?


Yes: 29%

No: 71%

Loose lips: “Yes. And it goes too straight.”

“Not for me!”

Is the 16th hole at Phoenix fun or irritating?


Fun: 89%

Irritating: 0%

Both: 11%

Loose lips: “It’s a blast — for one week only.”

What’s the best course on Tour?


Riviera (above): 18%

Muirfield Village: 15%

Colonial: 15%

Harbour Town: 15%

What’s the worst course on Tour?


Torrey Pines North (above): 15%

Las Colinas: 15%

Trump Puerto Rico: 9%

PGA West: 5%

Bay Hill: 5%

TPC Sawgrass: 5%

TPC New Orleans: 5%

Loose lips: “I hate going to Palm Springs. It’s so depressing. There are so many old people, I feel like I’m going to die if I go there.”


Champions Tour Survey Responses

Was Dustin Johnson’s leave from the game voluntary?


Yes: 17%

No: 83%

Loose lips: “Not a chance. There were rumors about that guy everywhere.”

In their primes, who was a better ball striker: Jack Nicklaus or Lee Trevino?


Jack: 48%

Lee: 42%

Equal: 10%

Loose lips: “Is there any question? Jack was the greatest striker. Not even close.”

In their primes, who was a better putter: Jack or Tom Watson?


Jack: 62%

Tom: 38%

Loose lips: “Jack won more obviously, but I’m taking Tom. Especially if we’re playing in Europe.”

Who is the greatest golfer of all time?


Jack: 58%

Tiger: 42%

Loose lips: “The majors speak for themselves, so Jack … for now. I think Tiger eventually makes it close.”

If a prominent Tour player in his mid-20s is found to have altered a couple of qualifying scores while in college, does that affect your perception of him?

Yes: 86%

No: 14%

Do you use profanity on the golf course?

Yes: 32%

No: 68%

Loose lips: “Does whispering count?”

What percentage of your kids and grandkids play golf?

All: 64%

Half: 22%

Three-quarters: 14%

Loose lips: “I’m really happy that they do because it makes growing older in this game much easier.”

How many more majors will Tiger win?


0: 30%

1: 22%

2: 22%

3: 8%

4: 14%

5+: 4%

Loose lips: “Sorry, but that guy is broken. And getting old.”

“He’s too good not to win another. Anything more than that, though, is questionable. He’s running out of time.”

A 10-footer to save your life, and you can’t putt it—who do you want to putt it?


Rory McIlroy: 41%

Jordan Spieth: 26%

Adam Scott: 17%

Bernhard Langer: 9%

Steve Stricker: 7%

Loose lips: “Whoever is No. 1 in the world that week.”

“I’ll go with Spieth. The kid is super clutch.”

What hurts the most?

Neck: 14%

Back: 36%

Knees: 24%

Waking up: 8%

I feel great: 18%

Loose lips: “Nothing hurts! Well, besides my ego after that pro-am three-putt.”


LPGA Tour Pro Survey Responses

Who will win more majors moving forward: Lydia Ko or Lexi Thompson?

Lydia (above): 86%

Lexi: 14%

Should Ted Bishop, the former PGA of America President, have been removed from office for calling Ian Poulter a “lil girl” on social media?

Yes: 36%

No: 64%

Loose lips: “Yes; you’re in a position of power. Be smart and act like it.”

“No; he should have been reprimanded but not removed.”

Rickie Fowler or Rory McIlroy?

Rickie: 34%

Rory: 66%

Loose lips: “Can I choose both?”

Tiger Woods or Adam Scott?

Tiger: 56%

Adam: 44%

Loose lips: “Adam is gorgeous but vintage Tiger is the best.”

Do you prefer four majors or five?

Four: 36%

Five: 64%

Loose lips: “The more the merrier.”

Would you like to do back-to-back U.S. Opens with the men again?

Yes: 74%

No: 26%

Loose lips: “Yes, but maybe we could go first next time?”

Would you pay $250,000 to be 15 yards longer?

Yes: 74%

No: 26%

Loose lips: “That’s a lot of money, so I don’t think so. It’s all about short game anyway.”

What’s your favorite tournament?

ANA Inspiration: 24%

U.S. Open: 39%

British Open: 33%

Lorena Ochoa: 4%

Bonus question: Have you ever tried to trick the person who checks the hotel mini-bar?

PGA Tour

Yes: 27% | No: 73%

Loose lips: “All the time.”

“Yes, but not for booze — it was for Coke!”

Champions Tour

Yes: 64% | No: 36%


Yes: 22% | No: 54% | Maybe (smiles): 24%

Loose lips: “Never! It’s too expensive. Just go to the liquor store and get a fifth!”

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