Dustin Johnson, at 6-foot-4 and ranked No. 2 in the world, stands tall among his peers. Harry How, Getty Images
Height may be a prerequisite for success in some sports, but golf has never been one of them.
Most of the great players in the game’s history didn’t even measure six feet tall. Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer were 5 feet, 11 inches on a good day, Ben Hogan was 5-foot-9 and Bobby Jones was 5-foot-8. Ian Woosnam at 5-foot-4, Gene Sarazen at 5-foot-6 and Gary Player at 5-foot-6 proved that even those below the average adult male height around the world – which is roughly 5 feet, 7.5 inches – could be among the game’s best.
There has never really been a correlation between being tall and having an advantage in golf, so it’s rarely talked about in the same way football or basketball scouts sit around and discuss combine stats like wingspan or a vertical leap.
Maybe it hasn’t been that way, but it could be heading there.
In the year 2000, about 18 percent of the PGA Tour was 6-foot-2 or taller. That is far less than...
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