Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau have been making social media headlines this week as the two exchanged some heavy competitive words between one another on Twitter.
While fans were hoping the feud would come to an epic head at the US Open, the two were drawn to be in separate groups for the opening two rounds of the Open this week.
Koepka most recently fueled the feud by rolling his eyes as DeChambeau walked behind him during a TV interview at last month’s US PGA Championship. The two golfers then proceeded to exchange some harsh words on social media.
The legitimacy of the feud, however, is up for debate, because as we all know, sports are so much more entertaining when there’s some level of a personal rivalry.
“Pretty much everything you look at online, it’s got this in the headline, or it’s up there as a big new story. To me, that’s growing the game. You’re putting it in front of eyeballs, you’re putting it in front of people who probably don’t normally look at golf, don’t play it. It might get them involved. I don’t know how it’s not growing the game,” Koepka claimed, admitting that the feud was good for the game.
DeChambeau’s agent, however, recently denied reports that his client declined an offer from the USGA to pair the two athletes together.
“The USGA did not reach out to Bryson regarding a potential pairing with Brooks Koepka. Bryson is fully focused on defending the US Open at Torrey Pines this week.”
Koepka also confirmed he had not been approached by the USGA: “It doesn’t matter to me, I play my own game. I don’t care who I’m paired with … What happens inside the ropes, it won’t bother me.”
DeChambeau, the defending US Open champion, will be playing alongside the current US amateur champion, Tyler Strafaci, and the winner of this year’s Masters, Hideki Matsuyama. Koepka is currently in a group with fellow former US PGA champions Collin Morikawa and Justin Thomas.
DeChambeau won his first major at last year’s US Open where he finished six shots ahead of Matthew Wolff. Koepka is a two-time US Open champion; he won the title back in 2017 and 2018.
Eric Mastrota is a Contributing Editor at The National Digest based in New York. A graduate of SUNY New Paltz, he reports on world news, culture, and lifestyle. You can reach him at email@example.com.