Jeff Overton got to ride a cart back to the Colonial clubhouse today, but it wasn’t the ride typically wanted.
Overton was disqualified after playing 10 holes of the third round for using a practice training aid while waiting to make the turn.
The violation was apparently part of Rule 14-3/10.3 which PGA Tour rules official Mark Russell cited as a cut and dry case of using an artificial training aid.
“It’s pretty clear in the book that you can’t do that,” he said. “You can go to a designated practice area and chip and putt if you'd like while you are waiting to play. But you cannot use artificial device.”
Overton later tweeted that he was told by rules officials that he could go over to the practice areas and chip and putt while waiting on the tee to clear.
It was at that time that Overton pulled out what he called a practice putting aid and hit several putts before continuing his round.
Overton later tweeted: Why do rules officials initiate that conversation to begin with. I wouldn't even have gone up there if I had know(n) that. What a joke!
Officials came to the conclusion to disqualify Overton after reviewing the USGA Decisions book which states that a player is disqualified if he uses a rod to check his alignment or his swing plane.
The “rod” would be considered unusual equipment and such use during the stipulated round is not permitted.
Russell said that had Overton potentially used one of his own golf clubs as opposed to the artificial aid, that perhaps that action would have been O.K.
At the time Overton was four-under for the tournament and even par for the day playing along side Brandt Jobe and Brendon de Jonge.
Overton receives a check for last place money, but the earnings are unofficial and he received no FedEx Cup points.
Overton had one final tweet on the subject: Tough break today. Looks like I gotta go back and rememorize a couple hundred pages of the usga rules book!
_ Kevin Casas