Tony Romo’s Cowboyness has always presented some problems for me. I’ve never liked the Cowboys, their image, what they think they stand for etc. But I’ve always liked Tony Romo. Sure, I feel this way mostly because he grew up in Wisconsin, but I kind of think he’s the kind of player I might have liked had he not grown up here. (The story about him changing a woman’s tire late at night after a difficult game makes him a difficult guy to dislike.)
Some people have been critical of his off-season pursuits in competitive golf. Cowboy fans like to talk about how he’s not dedicated enough to football because he devotes considerable time to golf in the off-season. Well, for those who don’t know yet, Tony Romo has just made it through the regional round of US Open qualifying for the the US Open golf tournament that will be held this June at Pebble Beach. He shot a 69 and had to win a playoff to make it through. Next step is sectional qualifying – a more difficult round to be sure, but if he makes it through, he’ll have qualified for one of the PGA Tour’s 4 major tournaments. If he can accomplish this, it would be a big freakin’ deal.
I disagree with those who claim that Romo’s golf pursuits interfere with his football career – they will probably help his football career and here’s why. Romo is an incredibly good QB I believe. He has good instincts, can make all the throws and he has a strong drive to win. His only concerning weakness in my estimation is his mental strength. He has struggled in big games and at big moments – this is well-documented. But if there is one sport that can strengthen one’s mental approach to sport in general, it’s golf. Especially, being successful in golf. Golf is one of the hardest sports to play well which helps explain why we see so many professional athletes from other sports drawn to it. Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky, John Smoltz, Ryan Longwell, Jerry Rice – top level athletes from other sports can’t get enough. You’d think we’d read more about these guys being great at golf because of the mental strength they’ve built up from years of dominating other sports. But golf is unique in that very few pros from other sports are good enough to ever play golf professionally. Michael Jordan has essentially been given a good reputation as a quality golfer, but the truth is, he’s just not that good. Face to face against a golf pro, he’d get waxed – and he’d get crushed by Romo too.
I think this adventure will prove to be good for Romo and I’d bet he ends up having a great year on the football field too. Good luck Tony.