Scott Pieri is a well-known name in Fort Wayne, Ind., golf circles. The 45-year-old is a five-time Fort Wayne City champion, finished runner-up at the Indiana State Amateur in 2012 and is a former area club professional. Recently, Pieri made a 10-second appearance in a commercial for Golf Etc., a local club-fitting store owned by a friend, to deliver a brief testimonial, which is where his golf career took an unexpected turn.
Pieri was not compensated for the brief slot, and thought that was enough to protect his amateur status. As it turns out, he misinterpreted the rule and found out from the U.S. Golf Association on June 18 that it would cost him his status. Pieri, disappointed but respectful of the USGA’s ruling, says he won’t appeal.
“Ultimately, it’s my responsibility to know this,” Pieri said. “I just misinterpreted it.”
Pieri submitted information about appearing in the testimonial to the Indiana Golf Association when questions were raised about its legality as it applied to his amateur status. The IGA submitted Pieri’s case to the USGA.
“If I did something wrong, I’d like to know,” Pieri said of coming forward about his testimonial. “If not, I’d like this to go away.”