The nine time winner on the PGA Tour is coming off a five shot victory at The Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines Golf Club, but not without a ton of controversy surrounding him.
On Saturday, Reed hit a shot into thick rough, where video coverage clearly shows the ball bouncing before it comes to a stop. As Reed walks up to the ball, he asks the spotter if she had seen the ball bounce when it landed, and she said she didn’t think the ball bounced. Before anybody can do or say anything, Reed quickly claims that his ball had plugged into the ground, meaning that the ball did not bounce at all and flew straight into the ground.
He tells his playing partners that he’s going to check and see if the ball was plugged (doing this before his playing partners even have a chance to walk over and look at it).
Patrick Reed claimed this ball was embedded and took a free drop
Reed marks his ball with a tee, picks the ball up to check it, and puts it back down. That move is totally legal in golf, but the sketchy part is how he did it. A camera was on Reed the whole time, but Reed’s body is directly in front of the camera, shielding any good view of him touching his ball.
Many have argued that it looks like Reed was pushing the ball further into the ground, making it look like his ball had plugged (it definitely didn’t, video shows the ball bouncing). After this occurred, Reed then calls a rules official over to check and see if the ball was embedded into the ground, and the rules official deemed the ball as plugged.
ICYMI: The full exchange of Patrick Reed taking embedded ball relief on the 10th hole during the third round on Saturday. ⬇️pic.twitter.com/OXVmP7xNx6
Several golfers on the PGA Tour took to Twitter to discuss their opinions on Reed’s actions. Many were not happy about the situation. Reed defended his actions, saying that he knows he did the right thing, and officials on the PGA Tour defended him as well, stating he had the right to mark and check his ball without a rules official watching. Reed also took to Twitter accusing fellow Tour player Rory Mcilroy of doing the same thing:
“RORY MCILROY DID THE SAME THING TODAY ON HOLE 18! AND DIDN’T EVEN CALL A RULES OFFICIAL OVER TO DEEM THE BALL EMBEDDED. END OF STORY.”
The reason for all of this controversy is because Reed is the shadiest dude on the PGA Tour. The man’s streak of cheating dates all the way back to his college days at the University of Georgia. Reed spent one year at UGA, and during his time there he was accused of cheating by his teammates, and also stealing a teammate’s putter, watch, and cash from the golf locker room. Reed also had multiple team alcohol violations, and was kicked off the team. Reed spent the rest of his college golf career at Augusta State.
Kevin Kisner, a fellow PGA Tour player, also had a lot to say about the guy in a 2018 interview with Golf Digest: “They all hate him, any guys that were on the team with him (at Georgia) hate him and that’s the same way at Augusta,” Kisner said. “I don’t know that they’d piss on him if he was on fire, to tell you the truth.”
Reed’s bad streak doesn’t end there, as he was caught improving his lie in a sand bunker with his club at the 2019 Hero World Challenge, which is completely illegal in golf.
The biggest thing about Reed’s current situation at the Farmers Insurance Open is that he knows he has a bad reputation amongst fellow Tour players. You would think that a guy who has the spotlight on him 24/7 in a bad way would do everything he can to show he’s trying to do things the right way, but Reed has shown none of that since his past has come to light.