Today marks the last day of the PGA Tour Regular Season, and for some players, it’s make or break time, for others, fate has already been sealed.
The top 125 point-getters will be headed to the FedEx Cup Playoffs, and those not already exempt will also get their cards locked up for the 2019-2020 season. But not everyone can be so lucky: let’s break down who could be the big winners and point out some players not quite as fortunate.
Viktor Hovland – Being part of the 2019 rookie class has made Viktor a hot commodity, especially since he is the last of the “Big 3” (ever hear that one before?) who hasn’t gotten a win yet. Let’s be frank, winning on the PGA Tour is VERY HARD, and getting everything to go right for 72 holes is not easy. Since he is not currently a member he needs to rack up some big points or a win to be able to actually gain full status for next year. Only three shots off the lead means he has a serious chance going into the final round.
Harris English – I realize the name might not jump off the page but Harris has been a consistent performer on tour for years. Although unlikely to get full status right now, today is a big deal because the next cutoff after the 125 is 150 which still would get Harris conditional status. Right now leading into the final round he’s holding onto the 150 spot and came into the week at 151. That one spot is going to mean a LOT.
Shawn Stefani – The current bubble boy. Thanks to a good week so far, Shawn has moved from 134 to 125 and with a solid final round, get himself into both the playoffs, and lock up the oh so precious PGA Tour card. Remember that EVERY player that makes The Playoffs also gets some nice bonus cash as part of the pool regardless. Hopefully, that’s not in the back of his mind while headed down the last few holes.
Not so Lucky
Pat Perez – So this is actually a long shot, but it’s important to point out why wins are so important. Pat went from 122 to 127 after missing the cut this week BUT thanks to a big win last year he will still have full playing privileges. This is impressive – for a guy who wasn’t sure he was ever going to play again after coming back from shoulder surgery last season. Being in the top 125 would have meant some bonus cash and helped with some additional starts, but with over 25 million dollars in career earnings, I don’t think Perez is that worried.
Beau Hossler – From Walker Cupper in 2015, to teenage U.S. Open leader, Beau is a household name for those that follow golf on the regular. He had a great rookie year in 2018 after gaining status thanks to money list on the Web Tour, but 2019 has not been so kind. Best finish all year was a T15 at the Genesis Open, and with a stat line like that it’s unlikely to have you sticking around. As a young player Hossler has a BUNCH of upside, so look for him to do well again next year on the Korn Ferry Tour.
Martin Kaymer – One of golf’s biggest enigmas, Kaymer’s career is like a roller coaster with only HUGE ups and downs. The quiet German with two majors under his belt can still go grocery shopping at Whole Foods without being recognized, all the while vaporizing a U.S. Open field at Pinehurst. He has alway shied away from the spotlight, even when he was into top 10 in the world. He was Brooks before Brooks—a big game hunter with his three victories being a PGA Championship, Players, and U.S. Open. As a non-qualifying member, he’s going to have to rely on sponsors exemptions to play in events, but if his career path has proven anything, he’s going to make those starts count.