Golf Talk With Greg Holman – #7

Click play to listen to Greg’s Podcast, or read below.

As I’m recording this, chapter 7 of my golf blog I’m reminded of what used to be called the silly season in golf, the time of year when there were no official events on the PGA Tour. Those professionals that wanted to compete and make some cash in the off-season without playing another tour, would play in exhibitions, pro-ams and skins games, where they could pick up some un-official prize money.

With the advent of the FedEx Cup and the wrap around season, where in a normal year the season would begin with the safe way open the second week of September and conclude with the Wyndham Cup in mid-August, there isn’t much of a “silly season” anymore.

Golf has become a year-round sport on the PGA Tour, and the way to decide an individual champion has become even more complicated than the Baseball Playoffs.

Let me try to explain the basics of the FedEx Cup, which has become the World Series of golf.

The top 125 golfers will compete in three tournaments at the end of the season, featuring a progressive cut to 70, and then 30. Top prize is 15 million dollars. There are 47 regular events in the PGA Tour, few pros play that many tournaments, but the season is structured to favor the best golfers with the winners, and 15 million dollars is enough loot to turn the head of even the most accomplished players.

Points are earned at each tournament based on the players finish with emphasis placed on wins and high finishes. Winning a tournament is worth 500 FedEx points, unless it’s a major tournament or the players championship, sometimes called the fifth major, and then first place gets 600 points.

Other prestigious tournaments like Arnold Palmer’s Tournament, will earn a champion 550 points. In the final event of the season, the Wyndham Championship, the leader in points starts play at 10 under par. The runner-up points leader begins at 8 under, then 7 under for third and 6 under for fourth, 5 under for fifth, sixth to tenth place starts at 4 under, eleventh through fifteenth begins at -3, sixteenth through twentieth tees off at 2 under, twenty-first through twenty-fifth begins at -1, and twenty-sixth through thirtieth get to play but they start at even par, 10 shots behind the leader. So as early as possible to win the Wyndham Cup without winning the FedEx Cup.

And that’s FedEx Cup 101, from the Professor, Greg Holman.