Difficult decisions lay ahead for U.S. Amateur champ Lee
Our experts give their takes in this week's edition of Fact or Fiction.
Should he stay or should he go. That's the question Danny Lee has been asked numerous times over the past week after his victory at the 108th U.S. Amateur.The New Zealander who was born in South Korea is just 18, so he likely has a long golfing future ahead of him. But should he take his game to the play-for-pay ranks of professional golf or take advantage of what likely becomes invitations to next year's first three majors? Lee said the choice isn't his. (His parents will make that decision). But what's a kid to do with all that talent? Our experts ponder that question and more as they share their opinions in this week's edition of Fact or Fiction.
U.S. Amateur champion Danny Lee should turn pro.
If you asked me if an 18-year-old female should turn pro after winning the U.S. Women's Amateur, I'd answer with a resounding yes.The LPGA is chock full of young tournament winners and the few years you spend playing collegiately would cut into your earnings potential. But a high school kid turning pro to try the men's tours? No way. While Lee is far from Ty Tryon, there just aren't many positives to be gained from playing for pay at such a young age. If Lee turns pro he loses his major invitations for 2009. By turning pro he loses his chance to play collegiately, which basically has become a primer on how to prioritize your time and deal with your responsibilities while traveling to tournaments across the country. Sure Lee, a New Zealander, is an experienced traveler, but he has always been the passenger with his parents steering the ship. In college he'd learn what choices to make. Although Lee's folks would still be around if he plays the tours, he would be the one responsible for his decisions and I don't know too many 18-year-olds who make all the correct choices when left to their own devices. Finally, what's the rush? Teens don't win on the PGA Tour. Jason Day may be playing well without college experience, but he hasn't won yet and the training he would have gotten in college would be just as beneficial as his career progresses. Even the best young stud on tour, Anthony Kim, spent time in college. Lee's parents should have Lee follow Kim's blueprint. Spend at least a year as a NCAA athlete in order to mature. Then turn pro when the time is right.
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