The Sunday Morning Gamer: 9er’s

I don't encourage illegal gambling... But I don't not encourage illegal gambling.
I don’t encourage illegal gambling… But I don’t not encourage illegal gambling.


Written by Nick Thiry | Content Creator, CLICKON Golf

I would never play golf for money.  Unregulated gambling is illegal by all accounts and has no place in golf.  People who participate in the changing hands of United States currency on the golf course can only be described as scoundrels or, worse, tax evaders.

However, I do play golf for Cheetos.  I’d bet just about anyone 5 Cheetos that I can put my 9 iron inside theirs.  I have definitely bet my friends 10 Cheetos that I can outdrive them on that long, straight away par 4 and I’ve also been known to stand on the first tee attempting to set up bizarre and overly complicated games of 6 point scotch, 9-ers, and Nassau.  Never for cash though.  Only for Cheetos, glory and satisfaction of years of hard work finally coming to fruition.

Everything you just read is what we told our golf coach in high school.  The joke of “playing games for Cheetos” goes back to my golf team buddies and I playing for quarters during golf team practice, and our golf coach brazenly turning a blind eye in order to set an some sort of wishy-washy lesson that gambling is only okay if you don’t directly inform the power that be.  At the end of every golf team practice, we would turn in our score cards, sit in the grill room and add up how many “Cheetos” we owed each other.  Then, with almost no discretion, we would pay up our $1.25 and wait for our mothers to pick us up in a min-van.

Thus began a long life of losing money on the golf course in a variety of mind bending fashions. I’ve lost in every way imaginable.  Presses, rolls, closest to the pins, total putts, fewest fairways hit, slow collapses, lightning-quick implosions, beat down over four hours, right in it til the end only to lose… You name a way to lose, and I promise you I’ve suffered that agonizing defeat.  Does that mean I’ll stop gambling on the course anytime soon?  Absolutely not.  I love the thrill of standing over a four foot putt for bogey with $6 on the line with your playing partner audibly cursing your future children as you miss that putt on the low side of the hole.  Golf, man…. A game of a lifetime.

I’ll play any type of game; I just want the action.  Give me that sweet, sweet ecstasy of doubling down with a press on 14 when I’ve 3-putted two of the last three greens.  Any game, any time, I’m down to lose $14 the hard way.  However, one game in particular has recently gnawed at my wallet and toyed with my ego.  “9-er” is a game that can only be played in a 3-some, and one where you’re never more than a couple holes away from a huge monetary swing.  Allow me to break down this game for you…


A total of nine points will be awarded on every hole, no exceptions.

Points, like airline miles or iTunes gift cards, are a good thing.  Most total points wins.

Points are awarded based on gross (or net) score per hole.  Nothing flashy, just raw data.

Here is how it plays our, over the course of four holes…

First hole:

Player A makes birdie, player B makes par and player C makes a triple (think of player C as your friends’ father-in-law.  He is a golf novice, but you can’t tell him not to play with you, so you’re going to take his money.)

Player A wins five points, player B wins 3 points and player C walks away with one measly point.

Second hole:

Player A makes par, player B makes par and player C makes double (Jesus, player C, you’re probably holding up the entire course.)

Player A receives four points, player B also receives 4 points and player C receives one point (straight cash, homie.)

Third hole:

Player A makes par, player B and C both make double (pretty embarrassing for player B, but becoming the norm for player C)

Player A wins five points, player B and C each win two points. (THE COMEBACK TRAIN IS A-ROLLIN FOR PLAYER C, WATCH OUT WORLD!!!)

Fourth hole:

All three players make bogey

All three players receive three points (Player A begins his spiral into a deep depression as he has just tied player C on a hole… Player A has brought shame upon his family name.  He will probably be exiled from his community.  The fourth hole was not kind to player A.)

So, at the end of the fourth hole, let’s tally this thing up:

Player A: 17 Points

Player B: 12 Points

Player C: 7 Points and a trip to the ATM

As of right now player C owes player A $10 and player B owes player A $5, assuming you’re playing for $1/point in a gross game.

Simply put, 9-ers will get the job done when playing in a three-some.  It allows for the perfect “never really out of it” aspect that many games are missing, and, if you’re like me, it allows everyone to lose in a variety of ways.

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