Bring back Golfstat — Quotes from Malaysia — Must-click women’s golf links
The IX: Golf Thursday with Addie Parker, Oct 26, 2023
Welcome back to Golf Thursday, my friends. With the final stretches of the LPGA and LET, combined with Q Series business, it’s easy for the college fall season to fly under the radar. But there’s been a pretty serious issue that has taken place over the last couple of months with the college golf scoring system. To put it simply — it’s in turmoil. For over 30 years, college golf scoring and rankings (which determine which teams and individuals make the playoffs) were housed by Golfstat, but in July of this year, the NCAA announced the end of its partnership with the scoring provider.
Golfweek breaks down the NCAA scoring debacle perfectly, but I’ll provide a brief synopsis (although I encourage you to read the full article for all the nitty gritty details).
In July, the NCAA announced that moving forward it would use a new system, Spikemark, to replace Golfstat. Spikemark was meant to provide tournament scoring, real-time leaderboards, detailed statistics, in-depth analytics, media, allowing fans to keep track of their favorite teams and players — but with the fall season almost over, there have been no official college golf rankings released.
That being said, the NCAA gave Spikemark the boot and handed over the keys to Clippd, a technology business for golf data collection, to take over as the official scoring and rankings provider for college golf.
From day one, the technical difficulties on the Spikemark site had dug a hole too deep and it never stood a chance to succeed. The very first event of the season unveiled the issues with Spikemark as coaches couldn’t upload scoring for players. There was only an app available for iPhone users and not for Android users, the site was slow to load and eventually it crashed. For days after the first tournament, the website was completely down, with the message “ground under repair as we carry out essential maintenance” displayed on the site. On Sept. 4, Spikemark posted on social media that its website experienced a cyber attack. To date, it’s the last post from the company.
As Golfweek reports, the NCAA had somehow overlooked that Spikemark hadn’t done live scoring for one event, and its rankings method hadn’t been implemented anywhere. There was no proof the website worked, so how did this happen?
Well, that’s a question Spikemark has yet to answer, and the NCAA has pivoted Clippd. Clippd is starting from scratch, and to be completely honest I have no idea what that entails but it’ll be interesting to see has this shapes out.
Where has Golfstat been during all of this? Well, after the NCAA’s announcement, the website couldn’t function the same way and had to lay off employees. But despite downsizing, Golfstat has been around to pick up some of the pieces scattered by Spikemark. Golfstat’s live-scoring function has been fully functioning but there has been no page with schedules from every division, nor are there any rankings posted like in the past.
The importance of scoring and rankings in college golf determines so much for these players. It’s the benchmark for eligibility, special invites for events like the Augusta National Women’s Am and USGA championships, and so much more. This issue is far from being worked out, and perhaps a bit of proof to the saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”.
Golfstat wasn’t the prettiest but it did what it was supposed to do, and hopefully, they can continue to help out in any capacity as the NCAA and Clippd iron out the kinks.
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This week in women’s golf
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This week the LPGA is in Malaysia
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Epson Tour News
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Five at The IX: Pre-tournament and first-round quotes from Malaysia
Atthaya Thitikul on seeing the game grow in Thailand and Asia
“I love to see not just Thailand, but all Asia get to the top of the leaderboard of the LPGA Tour. I think it’s a huge part, and I would be happy if I see any Asian player get to the top of the leaderboard, which mean all Asian, we’re strong, we’re together. Our countries, I think everyone love coming to Asia, especially me. I love playing in Asia. I think we are like a neighbor and we’re trying to catch on top of the LPGA Tour, which is like not just Thailand, but I think all of Asia would love to do that.”
Nelly Korda on returning to Malaysia and playing in favorable conditions
“I remember coming here my rookie here in 2017 and, one, I like playing in hot weather, and this reminds me a little bit of home kind of with the warm weather. I really like the golf course, the city. I mean, I think majority of the tour was really, really excited to come back to Malaysia… I really enjoy playing — for me it’s like a lot about weather too. And the grass. I enjoy playing on bermudagrass, what I grew up on and I played pretty much my whole life on. I enjoy warm, humid weather.”
Boutier on the challenges of playing in Malaysia
“I feel like it’s definitely a lot about saving your energy where you can. You are definitely not going to spend all day out there grinding because you have to be smart about where you’re spending your energy and just being able to save it for the tournament. So I think that’s going to be key. I think just with not only the heat, but the thunderstorms as well, I think this can definitely be a little bit tricky just to be able to get the rounds in. I’m just honestly trying to just think about getting each day done at a time. I think it’s a little bit out of your control to try to think about anything further than really the day of.”
Hannah Green on her final birdie falling in before weather delays suspended play
“Very, very happy. I actually didn’t realize how close it was getting until I walked back after looking at the green on my — for my third shot on the last. I was like oh, my gosh, I really don’t want to be stuck on the putting green with who knows how long of a delay. So it was nice for that putt to fall in, and obviously in good position for the tournament.”
Natasha Andrea Oon on her opening round in Malaysia
“I played with Lydia and Hannah today who I really looked up to being in college golf, growing up, junior golf. I really idolized Lydia, so that was kind of surreal for me… Just teeing off in my home country and having a lot of support and everybody cheering me on, it was kind of surreal. Felt like a celebrity, so that was really nice. I had a good time.”
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