T.J. Auclair is a Senior Interactive Producer for PGA.com and has covered professional golf since 1998, traveling to over 60 major championships. You can follow him on Twitter, @tjauclair.
Anchoring 'grandfather' period floated by PGA
PGA of America President Ted Bishop will have the opportunity to make a case for a "grandfather period" for recreational amateurs when it comes to anchored putters at the USGA Annual Meeting on Feb. 8.
In a letter to PGA Members, Bishop wrote that he, along with PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem, would jointly attend the USGA Executive Committee meeting in Pinehurst, N.C., to formally request a "grandfather period" for recreational amateurs who anchor long putters.
"As you know, the USGA and the R&A have approved Rule 14-1b, which bans the anchored stroke, effective Jan. 1, 2016," Bishop wrote in the letter. "The leadership at the PGA of America and the PGA Tour both believe that it would be reasonable to offer recreational golfers who anchor a longer period of time to convert to the approved method of making a stroke. For example, when the 'Grooves Rule' was instituted in 2009, the USGA allowed a 15-year 'grandfather period' for amateurs to switch to conforming golf clubs.
"We believe our request for a 'grandfather period' can further assist you, the PGA Professional, in transitioning recreational golfers who do anchor, to the approved method."
To support the request, Bishop has asked PGA Professionals to submit their own stories and/or case studies to be used during the presentation.
Bishop has said this request is not intended to reignite the debate on anchoring -- the PGA of America has accepted the USGA decision to invoke Rule 14-1b in 2016.
Bishop's hope is that the USGA will consider a grandfather period to simply give amateurs a longer period to make the transition.
Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.