Former US PGA champion Rich Beem has said that he thinks Bryson DeChambeau still has “a lot to learn” if he is to turn around public opinion.
DeChambeau has become the most talked-about player in the game this year due to the incredible physical transformation he has put himself through in order to hit the ball further.
However, whilst he has enjoyed significant success on the course as a result of these changes, he has struggled to cope with the attention yielded by his new-found fame.
That was in evidence at the Rocket Mortgage Classic last month, where he got into a confrontation with a television cameraman, and again at the Memorial Tournament, where he was widely criticised for his behaviour towards a rules official en route to marking down a ten on the par-5 15th in the second round.
Speaking on the launch episode of The bunkered Podcast – available to listen to on all major podcast providers – Beem said that addressing that side of his character will be important for DeChambeau going forward.
LISTEN TO EPISODE 1 OF THE BUNKERED PODCAST
“I think there’s a lot for this young man still to learn,” said the 2002 US PGA champion. “You can’t have the accolades without taking some of the heat in this world in this day and age. It just doesn’t happen.
“Bryson needs to learn that if he wants to become the world’s best because this is what you signed up for, young man. You wanted to have all of it. You wanted to be a big deal. You wanted to have the money and the fame. Guess what? You have to play the game.
“Until he learns that, with some of his actions, the more he does them, the worse off he’ll be.”
Beem was at the Memorial Tournament in a media capacity with Sky Sports Golf and revealed that he DeChambeau declined all interview requests after carding that ugly ten. That, he says, was an opportunity missed.
“I think it would have really ingratiated him to the fans to say, ‘Yeah, listen, I made a ten. I got over there and I really thought I could whip-hook one around the trees with a 5-wood and I couldn’t do it.’ I think he was believing that we were going to talk to him more about the incident that he had with the rules official and that wasn’t the case at all. We wanted to know the makings of a ten.
“I like the kid. He’s got a way of looking at the game that we could all learn something from. But until he breaks through and learns how to chat with the media – good, bad or ugly – then folks will stop wanting to talk to him and I think that would be pretty sad.
"He’s got a lot to offer if he can learn how to level off his demeanour when you need to.”