If Phil Mickelson can wear a paper clip on his cap without having Twitter tear him a new one, then Billy Horschel can damn well turn his backwards to finish out a miserable round at Royal Troon.
Horschel, who drew the drowned-rat afternoon wave of Friday’s Open tee times, was finishing up a hellish 14-over 85 second round. The colorful BillyHo, known primarily before his 2014 FedExCup-winning season for his octopus pants and other gaudy attire, unwittingly caused quite the stir when he had the unmitigated chutzpah to turn his golf hat around as he waded into the finishing hole.
Billy Horschel out there looking like Ken Griffey Jr in '98 pic.twitter.com/lAa7LmJ5N1— Trent (@BarstoolTrent) July 15, 2016
Drenched to the skin after ditching his Gore-Tex, Horschel was putting the finishing touches on a score 18 strokes higher than the 67 he posted on Saturday. As he approached the 18th green, the harumphing began from the bone-dry couches of those who long for the days of Johnny Miller’s godawful body-hugging plaid trousers
Johnny Miller sure liked his plaid pants. pic.twitter.com/xhv7Zen9fh— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) June 13, 2016
The critics of couture would likely have preferred even more so the old Scottish golfers’ knickers and other tweedy threads, judging by the vitriol caused by the direction of Horschel’s hat (a sampling):
Always root for ya @BillyHo_Golf but the disrespect u showed on ur 36th hole today was sad. Grow up.— Paul Regali (@ghostofhogan) July 15, 2016
Billy Horschel please wear your hat in a traditional manner please!— Brian Crocker (@Crock9iron) July 15, 2016
Thank you Billy Horschel for giving me another reason to dislike you! #TheOpen— John Lovellette (@Johnnnylove9) July 15, 2016
All of which surprised, then irritated Horschel.
Ppl giving me a hard time about my hat being backwards... Grow up! Hat was drenched from the rain and was dripping from the bill.— Billy Horschel (@BillyHo_Golf) July 15, 2016
I showed no disrespect to the game, Royal Troon, or @theopen with my hat backwards. Hat backwards is a look/style. Get over yourself— Billy Horschel (@BillyHo_Golf) July 15, 2016
Several golfing types came to Horschel’s defense.
Wish @BillyHo_Golf wore his hat backward AND had a Phil Mickelson paper clip in it. Honestly, we need to calm down.— Jim McCabe (@GolfweekMcCabe) July 15, 2016
In case the fuddy-duddies still needed convincing, one of Horschel’s peers came to his defense by noting that Billy’s fashion look did, indeed, have a practical purpose.
Now that Horschel and his head gear are stateside-bound, we can only hope someone does not hole out in three on a par-5, lest we must endure yet another skull-imploding "double eagle vs. albatross" polemic.