Truth & Rumors: Tour pros get down, McDowell defends equipment switch and you keep your cell phone

Truth & Rumors: Tour pros get down, McDowell defends equipment switch and you keep your cell phone

Karaoke Jam, PGA Tour-styleNormally I would file this under "Tweet of the Day," but this Twitter video from new-media master Ian Poulter is more than just a tweet…it's a work of art.

Yes, that really happened. In case you couldn't make them out, those were PGA Tour pros (and semi-professional singers) Ben Crane and Ryan Palmer. Both guys are known to be entertaining (example: this gem from Crane last year) but this is on a whole other level. They might not have the musical acumen of Wham!, but Palmer's got most of George Michael's dance moves down cold (actually, it looks a little more like Morris Day and the Time, but I'll give him the benefit of the doubt). The most impressive (depressing?) thing about this video? Poulter claims it was shot at 8:30 p.m. The Big SwitcherooOk, you're a professional golfer who just had a career year that included two European Tour wins, a major championship, and capturing the winning point for your Ryder Cup team in dramatic fashion. What do you do next? If you're Graeme McDowell, you change equipment sponsors. The reigning U.S. Open champ rang in the new year by switching from Callaway to Srixon, a move that has raised some eyebrows and attracted the attention of Sky Sports:

"I'm sure people are scratching their heads," McDowell said. "But sometimes things come to end and I feel really good about the start of a new era with some fresh energy coming at me from some new guys.
"The golf ball is probably one of the things that attracted me the most, the Srixon ball is pretty impressive. I was messing around with it at the end of last season and I realized it was a golf ball I could get to the next level with."

This is a pretty bold move by McDowell, and if he has a slow start to the season (his first full year on the PGA Tour) he's going to be hearing this question an awful lot. I won't get into the Callaway vs. Srixon debate, but it's probably a safe assumption that when a young pro has an absolute dream season and then decides to completely change out his bag, it has less to do with golf balls and "energy" and more to do with dollar signs. Phoning it inTechnology-addicted golf fans rejoice! The PGA Tour has been dropping hints that it will be easing restrictions on cell phone usage and after a few tests runs last year they're finally following through with it…on a limited basis, of course (you know–just to be safe).

Spectators at this month's Farmers Insurance Open will be allowed to bring mobile phones to the course and use them in designated areas, the PGA Tour said on Tuesday.
The shift in policy is part of an ongoing experiment by the Tour to enhance the overall fan experience at events on the circuit. Spectators will be allowed to use their mobile phones to send and receive e-mails and text messages, check on-course data and make calls in designated areas during the January 27-30 Farmers Insurance Open in San Diego.

This may not seem like such a big deal, but it's got wider implications than being able to send your wife an "OMG, Phil just hit me with his ball and gave me his watch FTW!" text. As of a few years ago, the Celtic Manor Ryder Cup was supposed to be filled with all sorts of technological wonders that never materialized once organizers realized that patrons can't be access features on smartphones that they aren't allowed to bring onto the course. A crowd with phones is the perfect target for applications like mobile scoreboards, player finders, weather alerts, and who knows what else to make the tournament experience that much better. Plus you can set your fantasy baseball lineup on the go, which is nice.