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NJDan

Molinari and Molinaro and Varner

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If 100 top D1 wrestlers put as much effort into golf for three years as they put into wrestling, how many, if any would wind up in the top 100 on the PGA tour? Mind you the #100 guy on the tour, whose name is Harold Varner and who has never won a tournament, made $1.2 million in earnings in 2018, which I assume is more than any wrestler?

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Zero. In three years they wouldn't even be competitive with the 3000th best player. If they played tennis for 3 years do you think they could beat a top ranked tennis player? How about baseball? You saw what happened when Michael Jordan tried baseball. There are a few crossover athletes to play two professional sports, but all of them played both sports growing up. What about swimming? They'd never come close to being fast enough to place 8th in a low level college meet. 

You can't just assume someone in one sport can just walk into another sport and be competitive. 

Edited by TBar1977

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16 minutes ago, TBar1977 said:

Zero. In three years they wouldn't even be competitive with the 3000th best player. If they played tennis for 3 years do you think they could beat a top ranked tennis player? How about baseball? You saw what happened when Michael Jordan tried baseball. There are a few crossover athletes to play two professional sports, but all of them played both sports growing up. What about swimming? They'd never come close to being fast enough to place 8th in a low level college meet. 

You can't just assume someone in one sport can just walk into another sport and be competitive. 

Especially such a high skill sport as golf

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29 minutes ago, headshuck said:

How about the sport of poker?

How about Chess? Boris Spassky couldn't beat Bobby Fisher in Iceland, but Dan Gable he'd have killed. Pretty certain Gable would have tortured him on the mat, though.  

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It would depend more upon their previous golf experience than anything. There are actually some wrestlers that are good golfers. I know there is at least one top 10 senior from 2018 that was on the golf team in high school...as a manager.

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1 hour ago, TBar1977 said:

Zero. In three years they wouldn't even be competitive with the 3000th best player. If they played tennis for 3 years do you think they could beat a top ranked tennis player? How about baseball? You saw what happened when Michael Jordan tried baseball. There are a few crossover athletes to play two professional sports, but all of them played both sports growing up. What about swimming? They'd never come close to being fast enough to place 8th in a low level college meet. 

You can't just assume someone in one sport can just walk into another sport and be competitive. 

You make a good point. But I think golf may be different. Many people learn golf as adults, even older adults. Sure, none of these people are on the PGA tour. But none of them, in all likelihood, train for 4 hours a day every day at great intensity. I don't know how old golf pros are when they take up the game.

But there are examples of late bloomers. Nicholas Lindheim started as an adult. https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/golf/2016/10/18/pga-tour-rookie-started-late-and-taught-himself-to-play/92362522/

Larry Nelson started at age 21 and won 10 times on the PGA tour. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larry_Nelson

This is just from a bit of googling. 

I think golf is an activity that few people train very hard at. If one could apply wrestler-like intensity, who knows...

 

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It would be an investment in both time and money, which most people don't have.  They would have to basically make it their full time job, find a swing coach, live in an area that you can golf year round, etc. and they would still be so far behind the competition it would be damn dear impossible to catch up.

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didn't California state champ Cade Olivas walk away from wrestling due to concussions and was going to concentrate on golf?

if this is even right (recall could be way off), wonder how he ended up doing in golf?

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1 hour ago, NJDan said:

You make a good point. But I think golf may be different. Many people learn golf as adults, even older adults. Sure, none of these people are on the PGA tour. But none of them, in all likelihood, train for 4 hours a day every day at great intensity. I don't know how old golf pros are when they take up the game.

But there are examples of late bloomers. Nicholas Lindheim started as an adult. https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/golf/2016/10/18/pga-tour-rookie-started-late-and-taught-himself-to-play/92362522/

Larry Nelson started at age 21 and won 10 times on the PGA tour. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larry_Nelson

This is just from a bit of googling. 

I think golf is an activity that few people train very hard at. If one could apply wrestler-like intensity, who knows...

 

I agree that some people do pick up golf and play well as adults, including some past pros.  But golfers aren't ignoring physical training like they used to; most top pros are putting more time into that. 

Also I wonder about the benefit of wrestler-like intensity.  Dedication to an endeavor helps with practice and preparation, but on the other hand, most pro golfers don't have a problem with being willing to put the hours in.  And I think the wrestling training could be as counter-productive as it is helpful, particularly during competition.  Seven minutes of all out effort vs four hours of 70something shots (with usually 30 or so of those shots being taken with less than full physical effort (putts, chips, pitches)), and spaced out by several minutes each, and playing the course instead of literally fighting an opponent, would be a very difficult adjustment for someone used to maximum intensity at a high level.  

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1 hour ago, drag it said:

I agree that some people do pick up golf and play well as adults, including some past pros.  But golfers aren't ignoring physical training like they used to; most top pros are putting more time into that. 

Also I wonder about the benefit of wrestler-like intensity.  Dedication to an endeavor helps with practice and preparation, but on the other hand, most pro golfers don't have a problem with being willing to put the hours in.  And I think the wrestling training could be as counter-productive as it is helpful, particularly during competition.  Seven minutes of all out effort vs four hours of 70something shots (with usually 30 or so of those shots being taken with less than full physical effort (putts, chips, pitches)), and spaced out by several minutes each, and playing the course instead of literally fighting an opponent, would be a very difficult adjustment for someone used to maximum intensity at a high level.  

This is another good point. Perhaps wrestlers are not the best types to take up golf. But I suspect that baseball players or racquet sport players could do it. It would be impossible to create the conditions to test the theory as no one will pay for their coaching  and few will have the interest without any assurance of success. But I still think it cold happen.

 

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3 hours ago, NJDan said:

You make a good point. But I think golf may be different. Many people learn golf as adults, even older adults. Sure, none of these people are on the PGA tour. But none of them, in all likelihood, train for 4 hours a day every day at great intensity. I don't know how old golf pros are when they take up the game.

But there are examples of late bloomers. Nicholas Lindheim started as an adult. https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/golf/2016/10/18/pga-tour-rookie-started-late-and-taught-himself-to-play/92362522/

Larry Nelson started at age 21 and won 10 times on the PGA tour. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larry_Nelson

This is just from a bit of googling. 

I think golf is an activity that few people train very hard at. If one could apply wrestler-like intensity, who knows...

 

Mo Lawal started wrestling in 10th grade. You can always find exceptions. 

Golf is a highly technical game. 

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2 hours ago, NJDan said:

This is another good point. Perhaps wrestlers are not the best types to take up golf. But I suspect that baseball players or racquet sport players could do it. It would be impossible to create the conditions to test the theory as no one will pay for their coaching  and few will have the interest without any assurance of success. But I still think it cold happen.

 

Baseball players can't beat top 1000 players either. The best one I know of was Smoltz and he could not beat feeder tour players on his best day. 

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I actually know a guy who attempted this.  He was a state champion in wrestling and continued to wrestle post HS.  He quit wrestling and decided to take up golf.  It took him about 7 years, but he qualified for the Nike tour.  Nike is not the PGA, but it is very high level and the purses are pretty big.  He did well.  I have had one teammate and one personal friend who were both wrestlers who became professional golfers.  Neither fit the bill of a power wrestler or even a jock; you wouldnt know either of these guys were state champion wrestlers by looking at them, but holy crap were they tough dudes.

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23 hours ago, KTG119 said:

didn't California state champ Cade Olivas walk away from wrestling due to concussions and was going to concentrate on golf?

if this is even right (recall could be way off), wonder how he ended up doing in golf?

Unfortunately, Cade did exactly that. 

Not sure how he's been doing in golf.  I looked it up last year and couldn't really find anything.

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5 hours ago, olddirty said:

I actually know a guy who attempted this.  He was a state champion in wrestling and continued to wrestle post HS.  He quit wrestling and decided to take up golf.  It took him about 7 years, but he qualified for the Nike tour.  Nike is not the PGA, but it is very high level and the purses are pretty big.  He did well.  I have had one teammate and one personal friend who were both wrestlers who became professional golfers.  Neither fit the bill of a power wrestler or even a jock; you wouldnt know either of these guys were state champion wrestlers by looking at them, but holy crap were they tough dudes.

Well this would suggest that if 100 D1 wrestlers devoted themselves to golf with equal ferocity, some would make the tour!

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On 4/16/2019 at 8:51 PM, ConnorsDad said:

Any chance Olivas ever wrestles again?

Definitely not in HS.  He's done.  He committed to ASU his freshman year, but I really doubt he ever wrestles again unless he wants to risk his quality of life.

 

Too bad.  He would have probably been the 3rd guy to win 4 CA state titles and then freestyle wrestling accomplishments as well. 

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Zero. 

I have been playing golf since I was about 5 and at my best was a scratch golfer. I was the #1 golfer on my HS team and finished in the top 15 in the state twice. I was offered a golf scholarship to a then top PAC 10 school. Unfortunately they did not have a wrestling team and I did not want to attend a giant school.  

I have played in about 20 PRO-AMs and I can tell you as a really good armature golfer the pros (even bad ones) are way better. 

 

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