Max Homa keeps tweeting, playing great golf

Max Homa double-bogeyed his next-to-last hole during the first round of the Memorial Tournament, which was not what his 400K Twitter followers wanted to see.

A frustrated Homa is not a funny Homa, which is a downer for the social media mavens for whom the 31-year-old Californian is a big reason they pay closer attention to the PGA Tour. To them, Homa is the best thing going in golf, so when he is not tweeting – and many hours of social media silence followed his Thursday finish – they are left not hanging on every word.

Many golfers in the cracking-sound-in-the-knees age bracket do not relate to Twitter. And many among the younger crowd who sleep with their phones still detest the social media site, which can be a vehicle for venom-spewing hate. Fair enough. But millions enjoy following their favorite athletes and celebrities, and consider it a bonus if the athlete / celeb interacts.

Homa engages his audience like few other upper echelon Tour players – he is 28th in the world rankings and has four Tour wins. He not just types his thoughts but responds to replies sent to @ maxhoma23. And his snarky comments, frequently covering inane Q&A topics, are often comedy gold.

A sampling:

“Why are all the photos of Sasquatch blurry when every cellphone has a fantastic camera?” a follower asked.

“Because people who are actively looking to photograph Sasquatch don’t have time to buy a new phone. It’s a full-time job, ”Homa replied.

“What are baby names you or your wife vetoed immediately,” asked a follower named Jeremy.

“Jeremy,” Homa shot back.

Switching to golf topics

“Blonde Koepka or brunette Koepka?” a wonder wondered.

“Blonde.”

Memorial: Friday tee times | PGA Tour streaming on ESPN + | Columbus Dispatch live blog

Max Homa watches his second shot on the 7th hole during Round 1 of the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio on June 2, 2022.
Pga 1st Memorial Tournament

And queried whether he would rather fight 1,000 tiny Francesco Molinaris or one giant Jason Kokrak, Homa did not hesitate: “1,000 Franecscos. Kokrak would squish me in his normal size. ”

More famously, Homa has critiqued the swings of amateur golfers who send him their good, bad, and brutal wind-ups and follow-throughs.

Among my favorites, one masochistic follower tweeted Homa instructions to analyze his swing and “Destroy my ego, pls,” to which the pro quipped, “I’m honestly just impressed and have an ego.”

I caught up with Homa after his respectable opening round, 3-under-par 69 that could have been a leaderboard topping 5-under except for the double bogey at No. 8. (He played the back nine first.) I wanted to know. what prompted him to engage so actively on Twitter.

His responses were surprising, if mostly because they lacked the hilarity of his online persona. Instead, his musings were steeped in humility and humanity.

“In 2022 it’s just a part of life,” he said of social media. “Parts of it I like, parts of it I don’t, but that’s like anything in the world. I like interactions; Twitter can be really funny, especially when something crazy happens, like Will Smith slap night. But other times, like gun debates and politics talk, not great. ”

Homa avoids diving into more controversial issues, explaining, “I’m a golfer. I don’t think it’s my duty to insert my political or social feelings into the world. ”

At that point, he hopes his status as one of the top rising players on the planet – he has won twice this season – does not mean he is becoming a world-class influencer.

“I’d like to think my opinions wouldn’t change other people’s opinions regardless of what world ranking I have, but the last three years I’ve been playing some pretty good golf, so the following gets a little bit bigger,” he said. said.

More than anything, Homa appreciates how obsessed his followers are with their golf games, to the point of risking ridicule.

Max Homa talks with his caddy Joe Greiner, who sports his always respectable beard on the 17th green during the first day of the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play at Austin Country Club on March 23, 2022, in Austin, Texas. Homa has four career PGA Tour victories, three top-10 finishes this season, and more than 400,000 followers on Twitter. (Photo by Chuck Burton / Getty Images)

“It’s cool to see how popular golf is and how many people enjoy it from all walks of life,” he said.

It’s also cool that a Tour player takes time to connect with the public in a way that both tickles and cuts to the funny bone. Some athletes are so worried about ruining their image they lock their personalities in a bank vault, where it stays safe with their millions.

Homa is not afraid to appear human, even sharing photos of himself practicing one of his hobbies: bourbon. (He has a multi-year sponsorship deal with Elijah Craig.)

“Got to try some @Elijah_Craig Bourbon straight from the barrel using a whiskey thief – which ironically was my nickname during my Korn Ferry Tour days,” he tweeted, adding another post that explained, “I’m typically a Toasted Barrel over one ice cube kinda guy. All class, obviously. ”

I’ll give the last word to one of Homa’s followers, who tweeted, “You’re quickly moving up the list of greatest Jewish athletes. My parents gave me a book for Hanukkah in 1977 highlighting guys like Sandy Koufax and Hank Greenberg. Page 3 was Bobby Fischer, and I was like ‘the 3rd greatest Jewish athlete is a chess player? Keep it going Max! ”

Keep it going, indeed.

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