4/5: Will Tiger Roar at The Masters?

Tiger Woods will face reporters this afternoon.  The news conference is Woods’ first since word of his marital infidelity broke late last year.

Tiger Woods.

Tiger Woods (Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy)

The press conference comes on the first day of the Professional Golf Association’s Masters Tournament — the competition in which Woods chose to make his return to the sport.  What do Americans think about the golfer’s return?  A majority — 52% — say Woods will be more of an attraction to the tournament than a distraction.  40%, on the other hand, believe he will be a distraction.  8% are unsure.  Golf fans agree with the overall population with 58% reporting he will be an attraction, and 38% saying he will be a distraction.  4% are unsure.

There is a large age and gender gap on this question.  57% of those 45 and older think Woods will be more of an attraction while 45% of residents who are younger agree.  Looking at gender, 57% of men think he will provide the tournament with more attention while 46% of women share this view.

But, what about disciplinary action against the golf great?  While the PGA has fined or suspended other athletes for drunkenness or tax evasion, the organization has said Woods’ sex scandal is a personal issue and to date, has not punished him.  Should they?  67% of Americans don’t think so while 26% want some kind of disciplinary action taken.  7% are unsure.  Slightly more golf fans — 72% — do not want Tiger to be punished.

As for the amount of golf fans in the United States, 47% of residents say they watch the sport at least a little. This includes 5% who tune in a great deal and 8% who follow it a good amount.  53% don’t watch it at all.

Table: Woods Masters Attraction or Distraction
Table: PGA Disciplinary Action
Table: Golf Fans

Marist Poll Methodology