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Going Pro
  #1  
Old 04-24-2017, 05:15 PM
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Going Pro

How many of you would have gone pro if Bowling had the same payout as Golf?

For the fun of it, I just did the math. WRWJ joined the PBA in 1980. His career earnings divided by 37 years and he averaged 124K. Not bad per year, but I know lots of people who make that a year at their regular jobs.

Just curious.
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Re: Going Pro
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Old 04-24-2017, 08:36 PM
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Re: Going Pro

....ok, I have to admit, I would have gone. But, the guy who was going to sponsor me, wanted his money back if I didn't win and half the money if I did....lol

Re: Going Pro
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Old 04-24-2017, 08:54 PM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by TomaHawk View Post
....ok, I have to admit, I would have gone. But, the guy who was going to sponsor me, wanted his money back if I didn't win and half the money if I did....lol
Ouch lol.

Re: Going Pro
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Old 04-25-2017, 12:59 AM
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Re: Going Pro

I will be honest I wanted to go Pro when I was in collage back in the 90's had a few peeps that stated they would have sponsored at the time, did cover the average requirements for the time period, but at the location I was at, at the time was pretty far off and not really any regional pro's local so getting the sign off by a pro at the time was going to be a issue. Injury did not help matters and real life got in way, money was not that important I just enjoyed to bowl as long as it payed the bills would have been happy LOL. Too be honest I should have stuck to things I did back then, regret switching job plans (not even talking the bowling part even) and finished the degree I started back then. Feel I have wasted 20+ years and want to go full circle back to original program/degree idea from that time period lol.

Re: Going Pro
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Old 04-25-2017, 01:06 AM
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Re: Going Pro

In 2016, the leading PGA money earner pocketed almost ten million in official winnings (before endorsements.) You have to go to position 111 on the list to find the first guy who didn't crack a million bucks. 223 PGA golfers made more than the the 2016 PBA leading money winner. 247 PGA members made more than $100k.

Yeah, I'd give it a shot.

Re: Going Pro
  #6  
Old 04-25-2017, 10:01 AM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by EastNashvilleOldTimer View Post
How many of you would have gone pro if Bowling had the same payout as Golf?

For the fun of it, I just did the math. WRWJ joined the PBA in 1980. His career earnings divided by 37 years and he averaged 124K. Not bad per year, but I know lots of people who make that a year at their regular jobs.

Just curious.
WRWJ has a degree in Physics and a minor in Mathematics, and has said if he didn't go into bowling he would have been a teacher or worked for NASA. Considering the average salary of a NASA physicist is $50,000 per year and a physics teacher is $55,000 per year, he chose wisely with the bowling. He also did well on the Men's Horseshoe Pitching circuit, winning 6 National Titles (close to $5,000 in prize money each.)

After watching the documentary film "Pin Gods" (a must watch for hardcore bowling fans), I would never have subjected myself to going Pro even with pro golf level prize funds.
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Re: Going Pro
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Old 04-25-2017, 11:58 AM
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Re: Going Pro

Me.

It was 1992. I had the average, the ability, and the belief in myself. All I needed was a sponsor or some funding of some kind.

As it turns out, I got "screwed" out of my sponsor money by a " friend" that went behind my back and lied in order to get his chance (Long story). Thing is, it was probably for the best. The game I had was great with polyester and urethane balls on wood lanes, but never translated well into the resin ball/synthetic lane era.

Kind of hard to believe that, at one time, Don Carter was the highest paid professional athlete on the planet, isn't it.
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Re: Going Pro
  #8  
Old 04-26-2017, 01:08 AM
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Re: Going Pro

I've noticed the ESPN telecasts don't even mention prize money anymore. The payouts aren't "terrible" but you have to wonder if they know the cash isn't nearly as impressive as other sports, so they just hide the numbers.

Re: Going Pro
  #9  
Old 04-26-2017, 04:12 PM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by ryster View Post
WRWJ has a degree in Physics and a minor in Mathematics, and has said if he didn't go into bowling he would have been a teacher or worked for NASA. Considering the average salary of a NASA physicist is $50,000 per year and a physics teacher is $55,000 per year, he chose wisely with the bowling. He also did well on the Men's Horseshoe Pitching circuit, winning 6 National Titles (close to $5,000 in prize money each.)

After watching the documentary film "Pin Gods" (a must watch for hardcore bowling fans), I would never have subjected myself to going Pro even with pro golf level prize funds.
In 1980 money when he started, that was a ton of money. Now he would be $150K in those positions.
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Re: Going Pro
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Old 04-26-2017, 05:31 PM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by EastNashvilleOldTimer View Post
In 1980 money when he started, that was a ton of money. Now he would be $150K in those positions.
Physics teachers (without doctorate) average $55K these days. Physics professors in colleges (with doctorates) average around $94K. Cost of living adjustments for various parts of the country will change the pay.

NASA pay scales are all over the place. Even today, scientists just starting with no experience and a bachelor's degree come in at $50K or so. Scientists with previous experience and a doctorate make more. To get $150K today you would need to be a GS-15 Step 10 grade employee which is the highest job level and reserved for supervisors and highly technical positions with advanced degrees. He might have achieved that level after 37 years of tenure, and spending more money in graduate school to earn doctorates in math and physics.

WRWJ has averaged $127K per year over the course of his career doing something that he loves to do. Many of us would love to be in the same boat. He made the right choice.
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Re: Going Pro
  #11  
Old 04-27-2017, 06:02 PM
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Re: Going Pro

WRWjr made the right choice and his average yearly salary is nothing to to scoff at… ..especially considering the value of that money vs inflation at the beginning of his career vs now.

Also factor in that he is one of the best bowlers to ever step on the lanes. He has more titles then anyone and ONLY averaged out to $125k a year.

What does they say for everyone else not in the top 5-10 bowlers of all time?

Plenty of bowlers made good livings but most aren't considered rich in terms of athletes.
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Re: Going Pro
  #12  
Old 04-27-2017, 08:08 PM
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Re: Going Pro

WRWjr went with the higher paying sport at that time, remember Don Carter in 1964 signed a contract for a $1,000,000.00 which at that time was the highest paid athlete ( football, baseball, basketball and golf ) Now think about that $1,000,000.00 in 1964 money compare to money now. Bowling has dropped in value now days.
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Re: Going Pro
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Old 04-29-2017, 12:06 AM
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Re: Going Pro

He signed a $1million dollar endorsement contract with Ebonite which was the largest at the time. I've not been able to find any details on the contract for terms, length, or how much was guaranteed.

WRWjr joined the PBA tour in 1980. Other professional sports were already seeing an increase in minimum and average salaries.

In 1979 Nolan Ryan became the first player to earn over $1 million dollars a year signing a 4-year $4.5 million dollar contract.
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Re: Going Pro
  #14  
Old 04-29-2017, 01:55 PM
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Re: Going Pro

Honestly, besides the "uh hum" opportunity previously mentioned, over the years, there were a few groups of people and individuals who showed interest in sponsoring me on the tour. They were legitimate opportunities too, all expenses paid. But, to me, the negatives far outweighed the positives.

It is a long time to be on the road. The tournaments were long and grueling. And to think, one unlucky break, like leaving a solid "9" or "8" in a crucial situation could keep a person from advancing or send them home? That's a little much to bear.
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Re: Going Pro
  #15  
Old 04-30-2017, 12:28 AM
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Smile Re: Going Pro

No guts, no glory! There are no guarantees in life. If you don't try you will never know what could have been.

Re: Going Pro
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Old 04-30-2017, 01:48 AM
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Re: Going Pro

I've attempted it even with the payouts as they stand today, though never very seriously. If golf money was involved, I would have put every ounce of my energy into improving on what I already have.
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Re: Going Pro
  #17  
Old 04-30-2017, 01:32 PM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bowlaholic View Post
No guts, no glory! There are no guarantees in life. If you don't try you will never know what could have been.
You are exactly correct!

For me personally, I had / have a relatively successful business and a family too. The trade off between tour and staying around town would have be negligible. Real money in professional sports comes from endorsements or playing in front of capacity crowds, both of which bowling has very little of.

But still, a person can't help wondering sometimes, if they could have knocked down one more pin than the other guys.

Re: Going Pro
  #18  
Old 05-01-2017, 11:10 AM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by TomaHawk View Post
....ok, I have to admit, I would have gone. But, the guy who was going to sponsor me, wanted his money back if I didn't win and half the money if I did....lol
I think I know that guy. LOL

Re: Going Pro
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Old 05-04-2017, 03:36 PM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by Juggernaut View Post
Me.

It was 1992. I had the average, the ability, and the belief in myself. All I needed was a sponsor or some funding of some kind.

As it turns out, I got "screwed" out of my sponsor money by a " friend" that went behind my back and lied in order to get his chance (Long story). Thing is, it was probably for the best. The game I had was great with polyester and urethane balls on wood lanes, but never translated well into the resin ball/synthetic lane era.

Kind of hard to believe that, at one time, Don Carter was the highest paid professional athlete on the planet, isn't it.
In the 1950s, he had Million dollar contract with Ebonite.
These days so many rookie baseball players make more than a million a year if they just make the club.

Re: Going Pro
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Old 05-04-2017, 03:40 PM
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Re: Going Pro

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Originally Posted by ryster View Post
Physics teachers (without doctorate) average $55K these days. Physics professors in colleges (with doctorates) average around $94K. Cost of living adjustments for various parts of the country will change the pay.

NASA pay scales are all over the place. Even today, scientists just starting with no experience and a bachelor's degree come in at $50K or so. Scientists with previous experience and a doctorate make more. To get $150K today you would need to be a GS-15 Step 10 grade employee which is the highest job level and reserved for supervisors and highly technical positions with advanced degrees. He might have achieved that level after 37 years of tenure, and spending more money in graduate school to earn doctorates in math and physics.

WRW Jr. has averaged $127K per year over the course of his career doing something that he loves to do. Many of us would love to be in the same boat. He made the right choice.
Don't forget that as a Physics professor you also don't $50K in expenses each year to subtract from that salary!!! Plus once you're tenured, you can only get fired for something extremely serious, like sexual misconduct or murder or theft.

Re: Going Pro
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Old 05-04-2017, 03:43 PM
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Re: Going Pro

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Originally Posted by Bowlaholic View Post
No guts, no glory! There are no guarantees in life. If you don't try you will never know what could have been.
Guts? Glory? Horse manure
And if you try and fail, like 99% of them, you can be a washed up alcoholic with zero prospects for the future at age 28.
You make the call.

Re: Going Pro
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Old 05-04-2017, 03:47 PM
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Re: Going Pro

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Originally Posted by TomaHawk View Post
....ok, I have to admit, I would have gone. But, the guy who was going to sponsor me, wanted his money back if I didn't win and half the money if I did....lol
I have to suspect that is NOT a sponsor.
That's a (former) friend who is willing to share, if you win, but wants no part of you if you lose.

I've heard of sponsors who will pay your entry fees and reasonable expenses and want 50% of your winnings. But they'll only accept losing for just so long. That's at least rational, in my mind.

Re: Going Pro
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Old 05-04-2017, 06:09 PM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by Juggernaut View Post
Me.

It was 1992. I had the average, the ability, and the belief in myself. All I needed was a sponsor or some funding of some kind.

As it turns out, I got "screwed" out of my sponsor money by a " friend" that went behind my back and lied in order to get his chance (Long story). Thing is, it was probably for the best. The game I had was great with polyester and urethane balls on wood lanes, but never translated well into the resin ball/synthetic lane era.

Kind of hard to believe that, at one time, Don Carter was the highest paid professional athlete on the planet, isn't it.
I was the same way. Rubber, Polyester and Urethane on wood and I was doing very well. I won some money in local tourneys. No 300's but enough scores in the 250-299 range to have some nice sets, (pot games and unsanctioned tourneys). League, I was good, but because of my work schedule at the time, I could not commit to leagues, and for some reason I never excelled in league like I did in the scratch tourneys. (I did not like the drinking atmosphere of leagues either). In any case, when resin hit on synthetic, my average dropped. I still occasionally had some good scores, but the transition game just killed me and I did not have the time to learn it.
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Re: Going Pro
  #24  
Old 05-04-2017, 07:14 PM
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Re: Going Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by charlest View Post
I have to suspect that is NOT a sponsor.
That's a (former) friend who is willing to share, if you win, but wants no part of you if you lose.

I've heard of sponsors who will pay your entry fees and reasonable expenses and want 50% of your winnings. But they'll only accept losing for just so long. That's at least rational, in my mind.
Definitely was not a friend, he was what one would call an opportunist. So he thought. He liked to make bets that a bowler couldn't hit a dime at 46 feet. Someone took a little bit of his money

Re: Going Pro
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Old 05-04-2017, 10:43 PM
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Smile Re: Going Pro

Per Charlest's post "And if you try and fail, like 99% of them you can be a washed up
alcoholic with zero prospects for the future at age 28.

So now we know accordingly to you what happens to every touring pro who failed on the tour. Thanks for the insight. However, I don't understand the significance of it happening at age 28. Are you speaking from experience?
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