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Handicapping Scramble Tournaments
(When most players do not have a golf handicap)
The Modified Scheid Scramble Handicap System

Many organizers of charity scramble tournaments try to handicap these events when most of the players do not have a golf handicap. One round systems are not accurate because the information gained from a single round of golf is not sufficient to evaluate a player or a team. When a scramble team scores a 68, for example, there is no way to determine whether that score was a poor round of a good team or a good round for a weak team.

Some scramble events use a Peoria system, blind selecting holes and comparing the team score on those holes to par to create a team handicap. There is no worse system of handicapping than the Peoria system because all that this system introduces is luck of the draw. A Peoria handicap has no relationship to a team’s skill—Only to its hole score variability.

Some events have tried to adapt the Callaway handicap system to scramble events. The Callaway system simply compresses the spread of gross scores and produces a tighter result, giving the allusion that the competition was closer than it really was. The team with the lowest gross score almost always will produce the lowest net score using this system.

Dr. Fran Scheid produced a modified system which is designed to give all golfers and equal chance. Dr. Scheid was a founding member of the USGA Handicap Research Team in 1978 along with me and I have known “Professor Golf” for almost 30 years. With his knowledge, I have modified his table to produce a table that can be used in scramble tournaments to produce team net scores in scrambles (Recognizing the limitations already stated above). The table follows:

Team ScoreDeduct **
50*51 no holes and use adjustment
525354 ˝ worst hole and use adjustment
555657 1 worst hole and use adjustment
58596061 1 ˝ worst holes and adjustment
62636465 2 worst holes and adjustment
66676869 2 ˝ worst holes and adjustment
70717273 3 worst holes and adjustment
74757677 3 ˝ worst holes and adjustment
7879808182    4 worst holes and adjustment
Adjustment to Deduction
-2-10+1+2

*50 or better gross score, adjust minus one to produce net score.

**Deduct worst holes based only on relation to par. ( For example, a 5 on a par 3 is worse than a 6 on a par 5).

1. No hole may be scored at more than double bogey

2. Half-strokes count as whole.

3. In ties, the lowest gross score takes preference.

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