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Grouchy Golf Blog

Tuesday, May 17, 2005 at 10:17 AM

O'Hair, A Real "Iron-Asshole Bastard"

That's how Marc O'Hair describes himself, according to an article in Golf Digest. And from what I have gathered, he couldn't be more correct.

Marc O'Hair is the father of Sean O'Hair, the 22 year-old PGA Tour rookie who's been playing some great golf on the Tour this year. Last week, Sean made his best appearance ever, capturing sole 2nd place at the EDS Byron Nelson Championship. For that Avis-like finish, Sean breaks into the top-100 of the Official World Golf Ranking at No. 96 and takes home a $669,600 check. Unfortunately, he is contractually bound to give his father $66,960 of those winnings.

Sound bizarre? It's just one of the many terrible things that Marc has imposed on his talented son. I remember first hearing about Marc and Sean a couple of years ago in a "60 Minutes II" segment entitled "The Tiger Formula." The elder O'Hair takes the term "overbearing parent" to a whole new level. He forced a military-like totalitarian regimen upon his poor son in an effort to manufacture a golf superstar. Daddy O'Hair kicked his son out of bed every morning at 5 a.m. to run, practice and lift weights. On top of publicly berating his son in public, Marc devised a system of punishment where Sean was forced to run a mile for making bogeys or finishing over par at tournaments.

I guess that's what happens when you look at your son as a business venture, rather than a person of your own creation. "I was in business 20-plus years and I know how to make a profit," Marc told CBS. "You've got the same old thing - it's material, labor and overhead. He's pretty good labor." Sean explained, "We have never had a father-son relationship. It has always been the investor and the investment."

Marc even made his son sign a contract when he was 17, requiring him to pay Marc 10 percent of his professional earnings for life. "I told him, 'I can't blow this kind of money without a return,' " Marc says. " 'When you make it, there has to be payback someday.' " Real classy.

After a disappointing 2002 season, Sean had enough and told his father that he no longer wanted him to manage his career or his golf game. Removed from life under a dictator, Sean's game blossomed. Instead of feeling proud or even happy for his son, Marc was outraged. He revealed that he intends to send copies of the contract with his son to the media if his son ever finds success on the PGA tour. "As soon as he gets famous, I am going to lower the boom," Marc says. "I am going to show everybody what he did to me. I have no intention of suing him. I intend to crucify him in the media, because what he did to me is not right."

"I feel like a damn fool," Marc says. "I thought I would get every penny back."

Marc, not only are you a fool and an iron-asshole bastard, but you are one of the lowest life forms on this planet. I know people who treat their pet hamsters better than the way you treat your own flesh and blood. David Feherty was spot-on when he called your treatment of Sean "Just sinister. No matter what way you look at it."

Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's flat-out terrible. I hope that kid makes millions, and that his "guardian" - there's no way I'd dignify that man with a "father" - gets not a penny of it. In fact, I hope the law figures out a way to throw the book at him.  

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Anonymous mediaguru @ Hooked On Golf Blog said...

Earl Woods on steriods.

There must be some way he can get out of that contract. I think he was 17 when he signed it.  

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Anonymous Slingblade61 said...

Am I mistaken or did I see somewhere that sean's father in law (the kid's married?) was on his bag at the EDS?

That must have been a cold ice pick to the rotten old bastards heart! :)  

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Blogger Dee said...

That would be one hell of a fist fight when Sean hits the big 3-0.  

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Blogger dave said...

There are a lot of worthless parents out there. One of the most important things in life and it doesn't require a license or test. We all know what it requires and I guess his dad is one.  

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Blogger FRED said...

THE GEEZER SHOULD BE HAPPY HE HAS A SON THAT PLAYS GREAT GOLF  

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Blogger Clublint said...

If this man was a woman and his son was his daughter, he'd be taking his kid to modelling classes.

Another loser who couldn't cut the mustard in his own youth so he pushes it onto his son.

Asshole.


Deb  

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Anonymous Robert said...

I'm not an attorney, but I have a hard time believing such a contract would ever stand up in court. For one thing, he was a minor. For another, that scenario pretty much defines "duress."  

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Blogger Mario Campeau said...

Oh man, this is pathetic to say the least. It is exactly in relation with a comment I wrote, in may, on my blog (http://sportskids.blogspot.com/2005/01/parents-becoming-agents.html) about parents becoming agents for their kids.
What makes me sad in this story is that it worked. The kid made it to the PGA and a bunch of moron fathers will only look at this part and will think: "Well, MY son will not let me down. I will do exactly like Mark O'Hair did but MY son will be thankful to me" Well think again. It doesn't happen like that.
On the other hand, I am happy to read that Sean's game went up after dumping his father. Good!
Anyway, what kind of father will loose a son for money?  

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Blogger woundedduck said...

What a bunch of whiners! My dad raised me just like O'Hair and I turned out all right. At least that's what my friend Ernie tells me. Ernie sits with me. In my room. When I'm alone. He tells me to do things. Hurt people. I tell Ernie I'd never hurt anyone. But Ernie says I have to do it, or the Angel of Mercy will come and purify me in blood. Ernie is bad. But he he likes my dad. And he likes O'Hair.  

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Blogger panthergirl said...

What an asshole, indeed. He might want to take a look at how another overbearing parent wound up: Jose Menendez.  

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Blogger Miranda said...

I agree with Robert, I think the contract could be broken due to Sean being underage. I also think it's good that Sean has a father-in-law who apparently treats him very well. At least Sean finally knows how a father and son relationship is supposed to be.  

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Blogger Dougs said...

There's no way the contract is binding. Notwithstanding the fact that it was signed by a minor, one doesn't need a law degree to make the case for duress.

I just watched Sean, with a big smile on his face, telling his interviewers from the Golf Channel that he was looking forward to being a dad. He was being interviewed following his win at the John Deere and his upcoming trip to St. Andrews. Go Sean.  

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Blogger ArchAngel said...

Give me 5 minutes in the room with this guy and I would negotiate a new contract for this young man...  

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish my dad had done that for me... There are parents out there that beat their kids, starve them etc.... a little run after a round of golf is hardly cruel... starving a child or hitting a child is cruel. Although many people would not raise a kid like this, some people are not easily motivated as sean o'hair seems. He must not have liked school to drop out at 17 and was most likely a lazy kid that needed that sort of structure. Perhaps his father intervened at the right time as Sean was heading down the wrong path... "if you want to quit school and golf, then you are gonna golf" The guy obviously had a positive impact on the way the kid golfs. Not promoting this parenting style but just saying that when people don't know the story it is difficult to comment.... and 10% is not alot to someone on the pga tour. We are the idiots supporting these overpaid athletes while we work our asses of all week long for a fraction of what they make in a tournament. Let's face it... golf is a great career... its golf... and the way this story has been told leads you to believe that the guy doesn't love his son. I find that hard to believe as we have not really heard the fathers side of the story. Many parents use their children as investments to a degree, this guy just isn't afraid to admit it. He didn't kill anyone or mollest the kid and Sean is now a millionaire... There are kids out there that would love to have that upbringing instead of being beaten nightly or sexually abused. seems like golfing all the time and making millions now is an alright deal to me.  

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Anonymous tom said...

Thank you, very interesting!  

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

his dad gave up a lucrutive career of his own for his son. he deserves something back for that. sean would have had to find a sponser somewhere. his father took a big gamble on giving up a successful career for his son. now his son in wealthy. and you are right he did not abuse his son he just made him work if you call working out and playing golf work  

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would never pretend to speak for another parent, but for me I could never do that to my kid. Sean's dad obviously placed money over the love and respect of his son and that might be okay for him, but no amount of money could ever buy me out of the love for my son. Marc did what he felt was right and now he will pay the piper for it by being disowned by his son. Hopefully a lesson learned. There are many other ways to instill discipline and responsibility into people w/o alienating.  

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Question- Where was the "Mother" during all this torture to the top?
Shame on her for not eliminating this madness for Sean. It takes two to raise a child. Kudos to Sean for persevering in spite of Brenda and Marc. God bless him. God help his parents.  

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I personally know this guy Marc and he is a real piece of work, only has ever thought about himself. Has one of the foulest mouths I have ever known and is a drunk. Ask anyone in Daytona Beach that knows Marc O'Hair and 99.9 don't even want him around. He is what as known here as a male whore. Too bad Sean has to even have this man's last name  

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