Michigan high school golf has an idea to stop cheating

December 26, 2018

There’s a new app coming to your iPhone, and its purpose is to root out cheating in high school golf.

The Michigan High School Athletic Association, which is the governing body for high school athletics in the Great Lakes State, is trying to implement the use of a cell phone app to make sure that golfers are recording accurate scores on the green, according to The Detroit Free Press.

The MHSAA’s golf committee recommended the use of an app after concerns rose that golfers might not be telling the truth on their scorecards.

The app will be rolled out via a pilot program during the 2019 boys golf season in the spring to test it out before deciding whether or not to implement it on a full-time basis. The app, which is called iWanamaker, allows players to post their scores in real time. Additionally, officials and the public will be able to see live progress of the event.

Current MHSAA regulations prohibit cell phone use during competitions. However, the pilot program will allow phone use in specific circumstances on the course. Along with using phones for the app, the program will allow golfers to call a coach or tournament official with a health or safety issue, contact a rules official, or use their phones as a measuring device.

These specific situations, which are all legal uses of a phone under USGA guidelines, will be recommended to the MHSAA’s Representative Committee for a vote in May. If approved, these changes will go into effect on a full-time basis for both boys and girls in the fall of 2019.

Regular season, league, and tournament scores are typically not made public during the round. Therefore, most people do not see the scores until they are posted on the final scoreboard. Not until the state finals in Michigan are adult scorers used to keep track at each hole. The public can then view the scores after every three holes once they are posted online.

“Making scores public makes it available for all to see, for all to look at and for all to make sure that what is being put in the system actually is what the kids are shooting,” said Cody Inglis, who serves as the associate director at the MHSAA. “If a kid is scoring out of his mind, then you can bet that they will attract more attention and eyeballs on them.”