I’m going to start this article by saying that I could be a bit biased. I grew up with Kessler Karain, Patrick’s brother-in-law and caddy. He and I played golf together on our high school golf team. Kessler’s older sister Justine, Patrick’s wife, drove us to practice regularly before we both had cars. And had Justine not met Patrick, she could have been living a very different life…
I’ve interacted with Patrick a couple of times, neither of which was super substantial, but both times he was nice, funny, and overall just seemed like a normal 26-27 year old dude. I’ve also spoken to Kessler about him quite a bit and Kessler hasn’t had a bad word to say.
So should I ignore his past and judge him as he is now?
I say absolutely. As far as the issues from his college days, I have also done dumb things when I was 18 years old. Hell, I’ve done dumb things when I was 28 years old. But no one cares about the things I’ve done because I’m not famous. So should we really judge Patrick for dumb mistakes he made 10 years ago? By all accounts, he’s not the same person. He seems to be a good husband and father, donates a lot to charity, and takes good care of people I’m close to. The reality of the situation is that cheating is rampant in college qualifiers. You don’t have much of a shot of going pro unless you play in college tournaments and you can’t play in college tournaments unless you beat your teammates in qualifiers. So dumb kids shave strokes. It’s obvious Patrick isn’t cheating on the PGA tour.
And the stealing? It’s alleged. No one ever had proof he did it but it gets accredited to him nonetheless. Maybe he did, but we’ll never know. Again, do you think he’s stealing while playing on the PGA Tour? Probably not. And yet he got crucified immediately after winning The Masters for events that transpired 10 years in the past. The ironic part is that going into this weekend the entire world was on the edge of their seats ready for the Tiger Woods show, a man who cheated on his wife 120 times. Dustin Johnson, world number 1? Busted doing coke and sleeping with other tour players’ wives. But no brings these up. That raises a question of what is considered worse in a fan’s mind, shaving strokes or infidelity? If you answered shaving strokes it might be time to take a deep, hard look in the mirror.
So what about his family?
The other story that came bursting back onto the scene even though it’s several years old at this point was “Patrick Reed is estranged from his family”. This is none of our business. Patrick could have perfectly legitimate reasons for not wanting to talk to his family. We don’t know because he never answers questions about his family but that’s his prerogative. If you think Patrick is alone in having issues with his family you might be surprised to find he’s not even the only famous professional athlete to be dealing with this.
Green Bay Packers (maybe elite) Quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, is also estranged from his family. It could be mustache related but the prevailing rumor is that fame changes people and in this case it was his family that was changed. Aaron got tired of dealing with it so he cut them off. It might just be that Patrick is dealing with the same issue but ultimately we may never know. Should we care? No. If Patrick is happy and playing great golf that’s all that should matter.
I think it’s time for the world to let go of Patrick’s past and let him write his own future. We can’t be surprised that he’s insular and not very forthcoming with information when he just won on golf’s biggest stage and almost every article that has come out since has been about his past and his family. Give the guy a break, maybe he’s not so bad.