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Bridgestone Invitational Golf Tournament

The Fowler effect

By Jonas Published: August 5, 2011

The terms “golf” and “teenage heartthrob” rarely coincide with each other.

Rickie Fowler is doing his best to break down the barrier.

See him on the course in his bright blue pants and neon green shirt.

Hair flowing from underneath his PUMA hat.

More and more kids are showing up dressed similarly, and cheering for their shaggy haired golfing hero.

“It’s cool to see young boys and girls out there following me around and calling out my name,” Fowler said. “You know, to have a chance to have an impact on little kids like that; maybe I can guide them in the right way, and that’s something I want to do, and definitely you want to be a positive role model.’’

It’s a cool position to be in, for Fowler. As he grows the golf galleries in a way that has never really been affected too much. Tiger drew plenty of younger crowds as a 21 year old, but never like this.

Fowler is just as likely to be on the cover of TigerBeat as he is on Golf Digest.

With the boyish good lucks and flowing hair, plenty of teenage girls are noticing perhaps a bit more. It all leads to plenty of comparisons to musician, and teenage heart throb, Justin Bieber; although, that comparison may be incorrect to some.

Well, At least judging by one over zealous, 40-something fan, who slipped past security Friday.

After Fowler recorded an eagle, and eight birdies to finish the round 6 under (8 under overall), he was being interviewed by different television media affiliates. The fan, without any type of credentials, made it into the area and asked Fowler for an autograph.

Fowler signed a piece of paper for the disheveled man as everyone wondered how he got back there in the first place.

Perhaps, the fan was confused with his teenage days... to Leif Garrett instead?


Fowler had 21 putts during his round of 64 on Friday, but it was his work on No.3 that will be what people are talking about. He never had to take his putter out, eagling with a gap wedge. It was the second eagle on No.3 at firestone since 1983.

``I hit two perfect shots,’’ Fowler said. ``I hit a great drive down there, really couldn’t have hit it any straighter where I was aiming, and then had 110 yards. Having a wedge in hand, we’re trying to hit close and, obviously, give ourselves a look at birdie.”

It was going right at it, landed just past the hole, came back, and from my angle I knew it was going right down to the stick. So I knew it had a chance, and it fell right in the back door.’’

Best quote so far today

As I tweeted out earlier, someone in the gallery yelled to Fowler after he birdied eight.

"Givem' the heater, Rickie!"

Who doesn't love a reference from the Major League movies?

Where is the energy?

There is very much a ho-hum feel around the course this year. It's odd. Bigger crowds were obviously around Tiger Woods, but even they didn't seem to be very energetic. I know, its golf. But I at least need an interested buzz.

Let's make it a conversation 

I'll be out Tweeting on the course for the better part of the next three days. Got a question? ask it. Got a story? Share it. Let's make this interactive and fun. Catch me on Twitter @JonasFortune.

@MarlaRidenour and @JasonLloydABJ are on the course too.

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