Golf and other professional sports stars in the midst of their careers have traditionally kept each other at arm's length. Being too visible on the golf course has often raised eyebrows from fans and management about whether a highly-paid athlete is doing everything possible to contribute to a given team's success.
But even during the prime of what seems a surefire Hall-of-Fame career, NBA superstar Steph Curry has embraced golf in a way few fellow athletes have. Anyone who loves the game and wants others to love it should be proud to note the announcement earlier this week that Curry will be donating the funds to help restart the men's and women's golf programs at Howard University, located in Washington, D.C. Thanks to a reportedly seven-figure sum Curry has provided for disbursement over six years, with the intention of forging a sustainably self-funding program, golf makes a return to the historically black university for the first time since the 1970s. Callaway is also involved, vowing to provide equipment for Howard's teams once they get going in the 2020-21 season.
Big kudos to @StephenCurry30 for supporting DC's @HowardU! Thanks to his help, Howard will launch NCAA Division I men’s and women’s golf teams in the 2020-21 academic year, helping increase access for African American players to play elite golf.— Mayor Muriel Bowser (@MayorBowser) August 20, 2019
For much of its history, golf has been primarily a wealthy white man's game. In the last 20-plus years, Tiger Woods' stardom has challenged that stereotype to a great extent, inspiring new golfers from a wide demographic range. The National Golf Foundation cites a significant recent rise in junior golf participation among nonwhites,from 6% 20 years ago to nearly 25% nowadays. Greater diversity among golfers enables the game's fun and virtues to benefit more people, and while Curry's initiative won't add millions of golfers overnight, it's a "grow-the-game" gesture that may appear modest in the grand scheme, but it's potentially steadier and longer-lasting than any marketing slogan.