It's not that MMA and golf are lacking a star name who is also male to put their sport on their back and charge in to the sporting market, it's just that both sports currently have a female dominating proceedings.
As Ronda Rousey defeated Cat Zingano in 14 seconds on Sunday, the golfing world admired the work of a 17 year old ... girl who has quickly risen to the top of the golfing world. Lydia Ko has the opportunity to be the face of golf for many years to come, she's not only a marketing dream but she's also freakishly good, as is Rowdy Rousey.
When you look at the UFC, who are the biggest player in MMA, they have plenty of males who they can rely on to sell out events and build their brand around. Just look at how they are promoting Ireland's Connor McGregor, they have a huge title fight between Jon jones and Anthony Johnson coming up as well and there's a whole host of great male fighters who the UFC can invest in.
But right now, their smartest investment is Ronda Rousey. Rousey is at the very least the best female fighter in the world and you could make an argument that she deserves to sit pretty high on the 'pound for pound' list. Her last two fights have lasted 30 seconds after pummeling Alexis Davis and then perfectly executing a ruthless armbar on Zingano.
That came after Rousey made many males drool and many females very jealous as she appeared in Sports Illustrated swimsuit shoot. Also, if you don't know she's an actress and says that she's going to feature in an upcoming film which is soon to be announced - she's the complete package.
Rousey has paved a path to a spot where she is the first lady of the UFC and the only real fight that fans want would see Rousey fight a lady who goes by the name of Cyborg - Brazilian Cristiane Justino. But that's complicated as Cyborg fights for the UFC's rival Invictus and also fights at a heavier weight, the only real option besides putting Rousey against up and comers is for the UFC to figure things out and make this fight happen.
Rousey, like Ko, has broken down any gender barriers that existed and can sell tickets and pay-per-view's like her male counterparts. Ko can take golf to a completely new level, a level that maybe your average male number one couldn't. Ko has the potential to have a similar impact as Tiger Woods by taking golf in to households that probably wouldn't give a shit about golf except for this freak of a golfer.
At the New Zealand Open, Ko was the star of the show as she walked the fairways with fans trying to keep up with her to just catch a glimpse. You would have thought that they were trying to watch a once in a generation athlete put on a show that only they could ... and that was exactly the case.
I've never been to a golf open, I've never watched golf live in the flesh and I've only really eagerly anticipated watching golf on the telly when Tiger was in his prime. Yet here I am in complete admiration of Lydia Ko, if I had the means I'd be there watching her just to witness history. The fact that she is 17 years old right now is obviously scary, but there's going to be a point when that novelty is gone as she enters her twenties and there's no reason why she can't continue to find new levels of excellence as she becomes an adult.
There's no reason to think that Ko will be the new Michelle Wie.
Golf and MMA are sports that you immediately link with the male gender, but we're in the midst of a a bit of a change to put it lightly, and it's awesome. Rousey can only defeat those who are put in front of her, which she's done with ease and I'm sure that at some stage the competition will catch to her, but there aren't too many UFC fighters appearing in big movies are there?
There aren't too many 17 year old female golfers, let any female golfer who can partner with one of their nation's top sportsmen and have a laugh either. If you allow yourself to wander in to the future, Ko has the ability and the opportunity to make ladies golf more interesting, more exciting and more marketable than the male version.
Both Rousey and Ko have already elevated their sport's to higher levels, they aren't just great athletes but they're nice people. They're good people who are here to completely switch the style up and destroy any preconceived notions you have about female sport.