Barkley’s golf antics always a highlight
STATELINE — Admission to the American Century Championship was $20 over the weekend. Replacing a cracked windshield that must have been hit by an errant shot, because I used a media parking pass to park on the grounds: $180. Watching (and listening to) Charles Barkley play a round of golf at Edgewood: priceless.
Golf fans will always find enjoyment in seeing great golfers like Rick Rhoden, Dan Quinn and Jack Wagner navigate Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course with great shots and spectacular play as they contend for the championship.
However, for pure entertainment value, nothing can compare to following “Sir Charles” – also known as The Round Mound of Rebound during his basketball days – as he hacks, thrashes and swears his way around the course.
One thing different that you will always notice with Barkley’s gallery is that everyone is smiling. There is a continual banter between golfers and spectators that you never hear around any other group.
During Saturday’s round, a baby in a backpack let out a scream as Charles was trying to hit. As the mother tried to apologize, Barkley made her feel better.
“No baby is going to affect my swing,” Barkley said.
After richoceting his tee shot on No. 4 off a tree, it bounced under the fence boarding the Kahle neighborhood.
“What a******* put a fence here!” Barkley swore.
“They should cut down more of these f****** trees,” he added when his next shot miraculously hit the middle of a small pine tree on the edge of the rough. Maybe we should let Charles run the TRPA.
“There are 300 hundred dimples on a golf ball, and I only hit seven of them,” he exclaimed after another misshit.
Between holes, he made a point of stopping to look at the leaderboard.
“I want to see if my name’s up there,” he said as the gallery laughed. “Maybe I’m on the back.”
After muffing several shots with his herky-jerky swing, Barkley tried a new style, hitting one-handed. To the amazement of the crowd, the ball flew perfectly off the club head toward the hole. His chip onto the green from about 100 yards away was almost perfect, with the ball landing about 5 feet from the hole.
As the crowd cheered loudier than anyone would for any of the leaders, Charles exclaimed, “This game is easy.”