The best fictional golfers
Universal Pictures

The best fictional golfers

While golf fans are restricted to watching tournaments on television at the moment. We can also stick with the TV (or your favorite device to stream) to check out some the best golf movies, short films or associated programs.

With that comes some of the most memorable fictional golf characters we've had the pleasure with enjoying a round or so. Some make us laugh, some wince and even get us to shed a tear. Here's a look.

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20. Christopher "C-Note" Hawkins (Who’s Your Caddy?)

Christopher "C-Note" Hawkins (Who’s Your Caddy?)
Monster Agency Productions

Critics panned this film - maybe worse worse than Caddyshack II. Hawkins (Big Boi), plays a rap/hip hop star (shockingly type cast) who wants to join a swanky country club, but is denied membership. Hawkins goes to some interesting lengths to be a member, and some entertaining moments ensue. But just enough to make this list. 

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19. Gary Potter (Happy Gilmore)

Gary Potter (Happy Gilmore)
Universal Pictures

We actually don't see much of Potter (Kevin Nealon) playing golf, but he provides plenty of comic competence as a fellow tour member of Happy Gilmore. He's known for his nonsensical wisdom, and believes there is more to the game than just physical talent. That makes him one of the more underrated fictional golfers in movie history.

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18. Shivas Irons (Golf in the Kingdom)

Shivas Irons (Golf in the Kingdom)
Michael Murphy/Golf in the Kingdom

While the the 2010 film was nowhere near as popular and critically acclaimed as the novel, Irons deserves a spot on this list. Irons (David O'Hara) is a veteran golfer who befriends one Michael Murphy. He offers guidance, knowledge of the game and also some spiritual advice that makes him somewhat of a magical character that we'll kind of revisit later on this list. 

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17. Donald McDuck (Clan McDuck; DuckTales)

Donald McDuck (Clan McDuck; DuckTales)
Don Rosa

Not necessarily the nicest of people. However, within the realm of these famed Donald Duck-associated characters, McDuck might be the most athletic. As legend has it, Donald McDuck invented the game of golf and ultimately got the sport banned in Scotland because of his hot temper and poor etiquette while playing. How's that for history?

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16. Luke Chisholm (Seven Days in Utopia)

Luke Chisholm (Seven Days in Utopia)
Universal Studios

Lucas Black does a nice job as a talented, young golfer, who tries to rebound from an on-course meltdown. As is kind of a theme on this list, Luke is helped by a mentor of sorts. In this case, one played by the great Robert Duvall. It's a movie that's likely off many radars, but well worth the time for golf fans who like a little personal drama with the sport. 

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15. Cosmo Kramer (Seinfeld)

Cosmo Kramer (Seinfeld)
Columbia Pictures Television

Ok, Kramer (Michael Richards) was not a professional golfer - he wasn't even an amateur competitor. However, some of Kramer's more memorable moments involved golf. From the infamous round with "Stan the Caddy" to the tee incident involving a potentially murderous former pro baseball player to driving golf balls into the ocean, Kramer was quite the duffer. 

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14. Dorf (Dorf on Golf)

Dorf (Dorf on Golf)
J2 Communications

Tim Conway is one of the true legends of comedy, and his run as the diminutive Dorf should rank up there with some of his best roles. Through this series of short films, Dorf offers plenty of golf advice. Which really should only be followed if one wants to actually become worse at the game. Still, just the sight of Dorf, before witnessing his dysfunctional instruction, gets the laugh machine started. 

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13. David Simms (Tin Cup)

David Simms (Tin Cup)
Warner Bros.

The antagonist, and somewhat rival of one Roy "Tin Cup" McAvoy. Simms (Don Johnson) is one fine golfer, but he's arrogant as most sports movie "bad guys" seem to be. Though, Simms is not mean-spirited, there's enough of him to loathe. Especially, because he's got something Roy wants that has nothing to do with the game of golf at all. 

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12. Chubbs Peterson (Happy Gilmore)

Chubbs Peterson (Happy Gilmore)
Universal Studios

Happy Gilmore's mentor, Chubbs (Carl Weathers) was once a great golfer in his own right. Of course, he was forced to give up his competitive career after his hand was ripped off by an alligator. When it comes to golf coaches, it's hard to beat Chubbs. He can be rough, gruff and annoyed by Happy's antics, but he knows what it takes to be a winner.

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11. Pat Pemberton (Pat and Mike)

Pat Pemberton (Pat and Mike)

The only woman on the list (there just are not many notable fictional female golfers unfortunately). Pat (Katherine Hepburn) is a tremendous all-around athlete - particularly when it comes to golf. However, her performance tends to go poorly when her boyfriend is around. Pat eventually hires a shady sports promoter (Spencer Tracy) to enhance things, and that's when the fun really begins.

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10. Joe Anthony (The Caddy)

Joe Anthony (The Caddy)
Paramount Pictures

Another trip back to the 1950s. While Jerry Lewis is the star as a golf instructor turned caddy, Dean Martin's Anthony is also quite entertaining. Joe, though, grows arrogant while earning some golf success. Ultimately, the two learn that the game is destroying both their professional and personal relationship - and maybe they are better off doing something else together.

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9. Rannulph Junuh (The Legend of Bagger Vance)

Rannulph Junuh (The Legend of Bagger Vance)
Twentieth Century Fox; Dreamworks Pictures

While the film did poorly at the box office, Junuh (Matt Damon) is a strong enough character to earn a prominent spot on this list. A mental rigors of war have messed Junuh up pretty bad, but he finds solace in the game of golf. A pure talent, and wife the help a mysterious, but wise caddie (played by Will Smith), Junuh has the chance to prove his worth on the course against two of the game's greats - Bobby Jones and Walter Hagan. 

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8. Al Czervik (Caddyshack)

Al Czervik (Caddyshack)
Warner Bros.

The truth of the matter is that Czervik (Rodney Dangerfield) is not a very good golfer. He's pretty much on the links for comic relief. His business is real estate, and driving a certain judge at the famed Bushwood Country Club crazy. His wisecracks are legendary (You get a free bowl of soup with that hat?). Czervik might also possess the biggest golf bag in the history of the game.

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7. Kenny Lee (Dead Solid Perfect)

Kenny Lee (Dead Solid Perfect)
Paramount Pictures

Throwing it out there. This is one of the more underrated sports - not just golf - movies out there. From 1988, Dennis Quaid stars a pro golfer who has the talent to be successful. However, the drive and ambition might not always been there. It's actually an interesting view inside the life of a struggling touring pro, and the often off-centered Quaid delivers an above-average performance. 

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6. Judge Elihu Smails (Caddyshack)

Judge Elihu Smails (Caddyshack)
Warner Bros.

Every country club has that one member who thinks he owns the place. Meet Judge Smails (Ted Knight). He's bossy, thinks he's best golfer in the club, and we'll, let's just say its winter rules all year round when the Judge is not playing well. Things did not go too well with his new boat and he's in the hole plenty to Al Czervik. Yet, Smails "Billy Baroo" might the most famous putter in the sport. 

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5. Danny Noonan (Caddyshack)

Danny Noonan (Caddyshack)
Warner Bros.

In a lot of ways, Danny (Michael O'Keefe) is the all-American boy. Just trying to go to college and help his family. Of course, his summer job happens to be as a caddy at the most dysfunctional country club in America. Actually, Danny has a pretty good life. He's smart enough, is a good golfer and done pretty well with the ladies. Now, if he can only win that caddy scholarship. 

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4. Shooter McGavin (Happy Gilmore)

Shooter McGavin (Happy Gilmore)
Universal Studios

Easily the most popular golfing antagonist. Shooter (Christopher McDonald) is the best golfer on tour, and knows it. As seen by his famous finger-gun celebration. He also does not like the way protagonist Happy carries himself on the course, or how popular he has become with golf fans. Basically, Shooter is a weasel, who will do anything he can to win - and make others look bad in the process. 

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3. Roy "Tin Cup" McAvoy (Tin Cup)

Roy "Tin Cup" McAvoy (Tin Cup)
Warner Bros.

Kevin Costner has taken aim - quite successfully - at baseball, football and even cross-country roles. However, one that should be celebrated is his turn as a former golf prodigy who has dropped the game to run a crappy Texas driving range. Ultimately, he gets back into pro golf, trying to qualify for the U.S. Open. While Roy has the physical talent, his mental game needs some refining, but he's still an easy character to support.

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2. Happy Gilmore (HappyGilmore)

Happy Gilmore (HappyGilmore)
Universal Studios

This might be Adam Sandler's best comedic role. It's also one the casual golfers can appreciate, and like to imitate quite often. How many times have we've seen duffer take a running start to hit the ball off the tee or do the "bull dance" when hitting a great shot or sinking an important putt. Plus, how many people can go toe-to-toe with the great Bob Barker. 

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1. Ty Webb (Caddyshack)

Ty Webb (Caddyshack)
Warner Bros.

His wry wit, subtle sarcasm and nonsensical advice are what we find most endearing about Ty Webb (Chevy Chase). Mr. Webb, as Danny Noonan liked to call him, is actually a pretty good golfer. He's a fan of night putting and hitting the links while blindfolded. He's apparently a self-made man, and owns a lumber yard. Though he's not sure where it's located. While Happy Gilmore gets a lot of attention, Webb is the ultimate golf nutjob. 

Jeff Mezydlo has written about sports and entertainment online and for print for more than 25 years. He grew up in the far south suburbs of Chicago, 20 minutes from the Mascot Hall of Fame in Whiting, Ind. He’s also the proud father of 11-year-old Matthew, aka “Bobby Bruin,” mascot of St. Robert Bellarmine School in Chicago. You can follow Jeff at @jeffm401.

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