5 Reasons Why 2014 Is (and Will Be) a Great Year in Golf

Phil Oscarson@philoscarsonContributor IIIMarch 4, 2014

LAKE FOREST, IL - SEPTEMBER 14:  Tiger Woods (L) and Sergio Garcia of Spain shake hands on the 18th green during the Third Round of the BMW Championship at Conway Farms Golf Club on September 14, 2013 in Lake Forest, Illinois.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Entropy is the universal force that drives things into disrepair. It’s why ice cream melts, shelves get dusty, and (in a roundabout sort of way) everything in the world just tends to get worse.

Hey, maybe we can’t blame entropy directly for the floundering economy or the increasing number of Adam Sandler films being released, but we can be sure that it hasn’t helped matters either. Still, despite the way that things tend to continuously go downhill, there are a few things that we can see actually get better with time.

Take golf, for example. From a game that probably evolved in Scotland during the middle ages, golf has become a sport that is played and followed all around the world. And as good as things are now, they’re only going to get better. Here are five reasons to enjoy golf in 2014.

1. Rule revisions

Golf is no chaotic anarchy where players scramble around like wild animals—golf is a gentleman’s sport. As such, it’s important to be familiar with the regulations before you play. Still, it would be silly to retain outdated rules, so the United States Golf Association (USGA) has reviewed the official rules and made changes where necessary. This has led to 87 changes, some seemingly insignificant, others less so.

And what do these changes amount to? Well, for one thing, players can now use smartphones to access weather information during a round. That’s right—that thing that you’ve probably already been doing is now legal. Doesn’t it feel good to be living an honest life again?

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2. Amazing competition

No matter who you (quietly) cheer for when it’s time to tee off, few can deny that 2014 will be a year of heavy competition. Long-time favorites such as Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson will find their experience will be sorely tested by talented up-and-comers like Hideki Matsuyama.

And because this is golf, you can bet that there’ll be some friction between the players as long-standing rivalries and personal histories become involved (especially if Sergio Garcia decides to make any more "fried chicken" comments).

3. Better shoes

Non-golfers may not realize this, but when it comes to golf, shoes are extremely important. Yes, you mostly stand in a single spot. Yes, you have caddies who can carry your clubs for you. And yes, if you prefer, you can even use a cart to drive yourself between holes. Yet, despite all of this, the act of using a club to strike a ball in the desired direction requires shoes that are comfortable and supportive.

So, in an effort to create the perfect piece of footwear for the golfer on the go, Nike has released the Lunar Clayton golf shoes, which are comfortable and supportive, while also managing to be stylish to boot.

4. New courses

Do you feel as though you’ve already sampled every course the world has to offer? Well, even if that were possible, don’t fret, because 2014 is going to see the opening of even more courses for you to while away the hours on.

One of the most anticipated new courses is Gamble Sands, in Brewster Wash., which will open in August. The course itself will be designed to accommodate fewer golfers, so you better start looking now if you want to secure some discount tee times.

5. More of the same

Hey, let’s face it: The things we love about golf are timeless. We’re not hoping that the sport somehow becomes more "extreme," or that the new year will herald some overarching revision that will forever change the game—we like our golf the way it is.

As such, perhaps the best thing about 2014 is that, for the most part, golf is going to stay the same, and that’s something we can all look forward to.

Take that, entropy.

You can follow Phil Oscarson at @philoscarson or read more of his posts at GolfZing.com.