Don’t blow your tee shot on the 16th hole at the Waste Management Phoenix Open or “boos” at your back will be the least of your problems.
The 16th hole at the Phoenix Open in Scottsdale, Ariz. is made legendary not by the golfers, but by the occasionally over-served crowd.
Thousands of people flock to the stadium-style seating of the 16th hole every year for the rowdiest tournament in golf.
Earlier rounds are the tamest. As the weekend arrives, the intensity and yelling erupt. And there is one man whose job it is to keep the peace. . .if there is such a thing on 16.
“Your attention, please. Players on the tee. Please show your courtesy,” can be heard, most times, over loud-speakers echoing around the 16th. Behind the tee-side microphone is Jock Holliman, officially the tee-box Marshal on the 16th hole, but he’s known around the course, the “Ssh Man.”
“I call attention to golf etiquette, proper golf etiquette,” said Holliman. “We don’t want fans talking or yelling in the middle of the middle of the golfer’s swing.”
Holliman has been behind the mic quieting the crowds for 21 years and is a member of Thunderbirds Charities in Phoenix. Inbetween every shot, Holliman steps up to the mic and does his best to give the players a moment of concentration.
“As soon as they hit the ball they can go nuts. We want them to go nuts,” said Holliman. “I really think the players have really come to embrace the hole. It’s a lot of fun for us. It’s a lot of fun for the fans.”