Yes, we say it often, but times is tough, especially in a world on a bubble (like, say, the sports world). The golf world doesn’t appear to be in deep trouble, especially not with money-printing machine Tiger Woods commanding everybody’s attention, but now’s definitely not the time to be picky about sponsors. Even if they happen to be SWEET MAMA ALCOHOL.
The SPORTS BUSINESS JOURNAL is reporting that hard alcohol sponsorships are being looked at by the PGA to increase revenue over the coming years. They can sponsor things like VIP areas at events, but not, say, tournament titles. And yes, somewhere, John Daly’s ears just perked up.
Loosening the rules would open up a potentially lucrative category at a time when the future of other categories integral to the PGA Tour — financial, automotive and travel — are uncertain. Diageo and Bacardi now spend a combined $7 million to $10 million annually on golf in the U.S. , and brand consultants said the category could be worth $10 million to $50 million a year to the sport if rules are relaxed.
$50 million! That’s a lot of devilwater. We’re not entirely the marriage would be successful; while people freely associate golf with beer, as evidenced by the young lady with the beer cart on your local course, you don’t really see people getting their Goose on during a game. That’s probably for the better; the last thing someone halfway into a fifth of Captain needs is a nine iron in their hands and a golf bag that’s starting to whisper insults.
Also, did you know liquor companies have their own clothing lines? And not like crappy t-shirts with the Jack Daniels label all on the front; like, things you can wear during a PGA event? Sure enough:
The PGA Tour is also looking at easing rules on endorsements, which state that players can do deals with liquor brands but can wear only the logos of legitimate apparel businesses licensed by those brands. For example, PGA Tour players Retief Goosen and Jim Furyk endorse and wear branding from the Grey Goose Collection and Diageo’s Johnny Walker Collection, respectively.
So if we’re reading that right, the players might be able to wear branded clothing that isn’t part of a line of clothing? Like, ohIdunno… a crappy t-shirt with the Jack Daniels label all on the front? MAKE THIS HAPPEN, golf people.