The Masters stars tomorrow, and we feel inclined to wade into the vast content swamp that is Augusta National. Our pitch for your slavish attention: Eisenhower Tree, and did it make any difference at all?
Eisenhower (a loblolly pine) stood above among the many landmarks at Augusta National. And, as we’ve established before, we love a good, iconic golf tree. Everyone knows the story of how then-President Ike wanted it gone, and how Augusta’s board stood its ground. Everyone loves the story so much that we still hear it at least once on every Masters broadcast, even after the tree met its end at the wintry hands of an ice storm during 2014. It’s kinda the only thing they can talk about, outside of Jack Nicklaus’s iconic birdie putt in 1986.
We, being stats-based folks, wanted to take a look at the limited numbers we had access to and judge just how much the tree actually impacted play during The Masters by looking at 2014 through the present (it came down in February of ’14) compared to its glorious past.
Here’s what we found: