Bryson DeChambeau is playing the John Deere Classic before he heads over the Atlantic to play in his second British Open, but he won’t have his handy compass anymore.
A compass DeChambeau uses to determine pin locations was spotted by TV cameras at the Travelers Championship a few weeks ago, and that ultimately led to the USGA’s review of the device. The governing body eventually ruled against DeChambeau, saying the compass was a violation of Rule 14-3a.
The PGA Tour sent a statement to the players explaining the ruling, saying: “The USGA has ruled that the use of a protractor (also known as a drawing compass) during a stipulated round is a violation of Rule 14-3a of the Rules of Golf. It is considered ‘unusual equipment that might assist him in making a stroke or in his play.'”
DeChambeau, who is defending his title at the John Deere, spoke publicly on the ruling for the first time on Wednesday.
“Look, I’ll say one thing on that,” he told reporters. “I will say it’s unfortunate. That was never my intention, to skirt the rules or anything like that. It was just a device I thought had been used for a long time in different fields. It shouldn’t be an issue. It’s not a distance-measuring device. It’s just a referencing tool.”
At the Travelers, DeChambeau told reporters that pin locations are sometimes off, which is where the compass helps him out.
“I’m not trying to push the game in any direction; I’m trying to utilize every tool in my brain to be able to reference information and get information in a way that I can utilize to the best of my ability,” he said Wednesday. “We want to see what’s allowable, and what information we can gather, and how much resolution can we have under that type of information.”
The 24-year-old won the Memorial in June for his second win of his career.