More than ever, fans at golf tournaments have taken to yelling — sometimes nonsensically — at the golf balls of pros. I’ts not at all uncommon to hear a “Baba Booey!” call following a Phil Mickelson follow-through, or a cry for “Mashed Potatoes!” after a Tiger Woods tee shot.
Jason Sobel recently spoke with 10 fans who partake in the shenanigans for an article on The Golf Channel. Tuesday, he appeared on SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio to discuss why these “fans” — Sobel hesitated to refer to them as such — choose to exercise their vocal cords at a sport that in terms of volume, is supposed to be less like a WWE event and more like a college library.
“Ninety-eight percent of us wish [the yellers] wouldn’t do that, and wish they didn’t attend golf tournaments. But something motivates these guys,” Sobel said. “I want to find out what motivates them and what can be done to stop them. What I found was that what motivates them was getting their voices heard on TV.
“These guys are texting mom and dad at home saying, ‘Hey, if you hear “mashed potatoes” on 15, that’s me, you’ll know I’m there,'” Sobel said. “And then Rory McIlroy gets to 15, he’s on TV, [the fan] yells mashed potatoes, and mom sends a text and says, ‘I heard you! I heard you!'”
Last week on The Howard Stern Show, Jason Dufner also spoke about the spectators, some of whom have drawn the ire of TOUR pros such as Ian Poulter. Dufner, however, said he’s not bothered by the baba-booey-ing.
“Nobody does it when we’re swinging, or before we’re swinging, it happens afterward,” Dufner said. “Sometimes the stuff is pretty funny that they say.”
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