News From Terre Haute, Indiana

May 16, 2009

Rub of the Green: Ringer Scores and Blind Bogies added to golf’s fun

By Bob Arnett

TERRE HAUTE — Several decades in the past, there were a couple of golf competitions that players enjoyed. These events were always open to players of all abilities and entry fees were minimal.

I’m referring to “Ringer Scores” and “Blind Bogies.” To play in a Ringer you might have put up a dollar or two and sign your name on a score sheet which was usually placed on a wall in the pro shop.

To begin, you simply put up the score you made on each hole. In subsequent rounds each time you bettered the score you made the time before on a hole, you erased that score and replaced it with the lower current score. There was no limit to the number of rounds an individual played during the time period the Ringer ran. Often a new event would begin each month.

The honor system was usually utilized, but if necessary, a stipulation could be made that a scorecard should be submitted for each round and it should be attested by another player entered in the Ringer competition.

Blind Bogey tournaments were organized to give all participants an even chance to share in the prize money or merchandise. Each month during the summer Quaker Maid Company sponsored a Blind Bogey for their golfing employees. There may have been a inexpensive entry fee, but most of the tournament expenses were borne by the company as well as a meal at the conclusion of play.

The objective in a Blind Bogey was to shoot a net score somewhere between 70 and 80 strokes. For example, if your usual score was 90 you might pick a 15-handicap. That would leave you with a 75 net and allow you to play a little better or worse than your target score. If your net score was outside the 70 to 80 range, you were not eligible to be in the drawing for a prize.

At the conclusion of play, slips of paper bearing the numbers 70 through 80 were put in the hat and the number drawn out would signify the winning score. There might be more than one player on the lucky number and that would necessitate another drawing from among those who tied, or duplicate prizes could be awarded.

With a Blind Bogey each month, tournament sites were shuffled among courses at Terre Haute, Linton, Sullivan, Paris and Brazil. The personnel department at Quaker Maid was responsible for administering these immensely popular golf outings.

A tip of the hat to Zach Hosking for a superb 68 at West Chase Golf Club during the Brownsburg Invitational. Zach’s father, Gary, and uncle, Brian, were both excellent players on South’s golf team several years ago, but I can’t remember that either of them ever posted a 68.

We’d like to add our congratulations to Kyle Miller who recently has been named head golf professional at the prestigious Victoria National Golf Club in Newburgh, one of the finest venues in the U.S.

After playing for North’s Patriots for four seasons, Miller earned a degree in Professional Golf Management from Ferris State University. During the past three years, he has been the first assistant at Crooked Stick Golf Club.

Congrats again Kyle and best wishes on an outstanding career in professional golf.

TIP OF THE WEEK: If slicing is a problem, check to see that club shafts placed across the shoulders, hips, knees and toes are all parallel and point on a line that is parallel to your line of flight. If your shoulders point across the line from outside in, you are apt to hit the dreaded “banana ball.”