Rickie Fowler: PGA Tour needs ‘better way’ to entertain fans

Rickie Fowler said Wednesday the PGA Tour has to “figure out a better way to entertain our fans.”

He made the comments at a pre-tournament press conference ahead of the newly named Cognizant Classic in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.

Fowler was asked about the Tour being encouraged to be more innovative in the wake of the partnership announced earlier this month with Strategic Sports Group (SSG).

“Luckily I haven’t had to think about that too much,” Fowler said when asked whether he had any ideas.

“I’m excited about the partnership because I feel like there’s some very smart and influential people (who are) part of that SSG group that I feel like ultimately can help the Tour evolve and head in a potentially better direction and be in a better position for the future.”

But he also cautioned that golf remains “a very traditional sport with traditional tournaments.”

“I feel like ultimately we’re in the entertainment business, and we’ve got to figure out a better way to entertain our fans and (have) it come across better on TV,” Fowler said.

“How we do that? I don’t exactly know. But, like I said, I feel like with the people that are involved, I definitely trust the guys, the players that have been involved, and I feel like the guys — especially since they’re not just golf guys, I think they have enormous respect for the game of golf, but also they come from a lot of different avenues in sports and business, and I feel like they can help us kind of give direction on where we can or need to go.”

Fowler caught fire last season and ended a lengthy drought by winning the Rocket Mortgage Classic in July before tying for 16th at the Tour Championship, but the fan favorite could do no better than a T35 in five starts in Hawaii, California and Arizona to start the new season.