The Commissioner Tim Finchem of the PGA Tour has stated he
wants to reduce
This would be done by:
Have 39 events in the FedEx Cup and end the season September 15.
The other 8 would not be included
Start the season the week after football's Super bowl, 2/4/0X
(the tour still has 5 before this). A 32 week spread. Three
of the five events before 2/4/07 have already shifted to cable
The dropping of some 470 players.
However, we want the opposite of this idea.
to make it possible to increase the number of evens.
Here is quote from the GolfHelp.com
Issue # 268 Different Strokes Golf Newsletter - 3/30/05
"SCHEDULE CHANGES A REAL POSSIBILITY"
PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem said last week that thought is
being given to moving the Tour Championship to September in order to make
the end of the season more compelling. He also mentioned
that a shorter season is one of several models for schedule
change being considered. Driving the need to make some
schedule modification is the revelation by TV networks that
they are losing money on the last four-year contract with the
PGA, which is estimated to be $950 million. Tournaments in
September and October get significant TV coverage competition
Upon further study, we have revised our opinion
of the Fall Series.
It is our opinion that that there will not be a contest for the top 125
after the FedEx Cup and that the Fall Series will slowly fade
More Events - A new Tour!
8/6/06 Original suggestion.
6/7/07 See revised suggestion
What should be done is create a third tour inside the PGA
between the PGA Tour and the Nationwide Tour.:
What should have been done for the
FedEx Cup is have an open week before each of the four majors, THE
PLAYERS Championship, and THE TOUR Championship. Use only events
starting after the Super Bowl and ending 9/23/07 the week before the final
season games in baseball, this would then be the Official Golf Season. This would
allow 27 events in the FedEx Cup ( 33 weeks) instead of the
32 weeks when ending on September 15. The other 21 events outside the 6 majors would be
determined by who has the largest purse. The FedEx Cup would have
The Men's Open Field Tour.
There are, to our way of counting, 20 invitational, major,
playoff and Championship events.
All the rest, currently 27 events, are open to all players and would be in the new tour.
This would include the current "Fall Series" events for
which the PGA has not been able to find a sponsor. This would keep
those events from going away. No event in the new tour would be scheduled on the same weekend as
one of the 6 majors. Only those events starting after the Super Bowl and ending
the weekend before the final regular season games in baseball would be the Official Golf Season. Those
events currently outside the official Golf season would have two
years to move to a new date in the Official Golf season or not be
counted in any championship. Events would be
allowed to move up to the Open field tour from the Nationwide if they
meet certain criteria and had the minimum purse. Events not meeting these
criteria would move down to the Nationwide Tour. To make this
new tour more exciting, a time limit would be established for
the players to play a shot. Remember, basketball never used to have a shot.
Look what the shot clock did for basketball. Did the players scream?
Yes, but they got used to it. It now is at every level. With this, and the more balanced field, these
events would have many more and larger playoffs and have big TV
ratings. One only has to remember
what happened when the ABA introduced the 3 point shot. A separate
championship would be established for this new Open Field Tour.
668 entrants in the PGA Tour in 2005. They made 6320 entries. There
are, with the 5 Champion Tour players considered full members, about
298 PGA Tour members, with about 58 inactive, or about 240 players who want
to earn prize money. We expect that to grow to 250 for 2007.
see how the FedEx Cup is going to affect the players, we need to take
a close look at the numbers for those events that will be played
prior to the Final Four. For those events not played in 2005 we have
The FedEx Cup points are only awarded to players who are paid
prize money. With a $17.5 million purse for the top 5 and a total
purse of 35 million in the
FedEx Cup, we have to assume that the better players will
increase the number of events they play in. As the better players play more often to get points for the season championship, a lot of the current players will not be able to qualify for all the events they have
qualified for in the past. This will concentrate the money in fewer players putting many players farther down the money list.
2005 the 13 events that had restricted or invitation entries had 902
paying positions, of which 134 were not members of the PGA Tour. The
average number of members is about (Top)59. The other 20 events had 1521.
The average number of paying positions in these 20 events is 76.
Therefore, since we know that the Top 59 will not play all events
and that they averaged 24 events in 2005, we can assume that they
will spread out their playing and average at least 33 entries per
event in these 20. If they played every event it would only take 17
players to take all paying positions. Thus from 17 to 43 players
will be in the second tier of players.
These 17 to 43 players will
certainly play the three opposing events. The Top 59 will not be
playing in the opposing 3 events. Thus the bulk of all prize money
will go to the Top 102 players, with70 positions paid in each event
these are the players that will make all the money. Thus the 70 players who take the prize
money in the 3 opposing events will also be the same ones playing in
the Fall series. That means that only about 140 players will earn
any prize money and will gather all the FedEx Cup points. That means
110 members will not make any money. Depending on how much the Top 59 expand their playing there will be a second tier of players
(17-43 players) on the money list with high prize totals. Spots 60
through 76 to102. Thus the 70 players making money in the opposing 3
events and the Fall series will be fighting for the last 23 to 49
spots. The total purse for the FedEx Cup is about 35 million,
therefore my guess is 25 spots. This corresponds with the fact that
exemptions 1-19 could easily take up the first 100 spots. This also
leaves 25 players contending for spots on the 125 money list.
the announcement of the Fall Series and the size of those purse,
plus the fact that some big name players are committing to play the
Fall Series, there is no question that the top 100 players will take
in the bulk of all prize money.
Is this going to happen
exactly this way? Of course not, there will be enough players who
cannot play the maximum 37 events or they realize that being in the
Top 5 FedEx Cup points is so unrealistic that they will not care.
There also are all the non member exemptions that each event has to
upset this scenario. But I do think that the drive just to play in
the Final Four for their sponsors, will push most of the players to
substantially increase their playing. And many players below the Top
80 will have to play most of 37 events just to earn their normal
prize money, thus freezing out lower players. Thus we predict that money
earned beyond the Top 150 will be less than $100,000 not the
$500,000 they are expecting.
We estimate there will be a total of
4230 entries possible in the FedEx Cup. That leaves about 1600
entries to be filled by other players. With 240 PGA Tour members,
all entries will be taken, except for the special exemptions. The 12,408,000
earned by occasional players will flow upwards to the Top
Only a few of the players who are lost from
the PGA Tour will get into the Nationwide Tour because of the
exempt status situation. Unfortunately with 668 entrants in the PGA Tour in 2005 something has to give. 120
members will not earn any prize money and the 350 non-members will not even get to
What about the players the FedEx Cup is going to freeze out?
In an interview at the Tour Championship in 2006, a player expressed
concern about the players who are not going to make any money
because of the FedEx Cup.
The question was asked "What are these players going to
That is a good question and here is why.
For the most part these are new younger players everyone is
wondering about. They have been asking, where are they? In my
opinion they just have not yet brought their skill up to compete
with the existing players. If they are frozen (forced) out, who is
going to pay the pensions of the existing players? In my opinion
if they are not there the PGA Tour will age like the Champions
Tour and lose its TV audience, and with that the galleries. Where
does that leave major golf?
I heard that some player suggested that there should have been two
tours formed. This is something I have advocated on my website
since March 2006. The
players need to convince the PGA to split the PGA Tour in two, one 27
event tour and the other 20+ as a new tour with its own
On my website I have stated that I believe about 120 players
plus the some 350 occasional players will not even be able to
enter tournaments in 2007 because of the increased play of the Top
144 players. Those 120 players below the top 144 who earned
money in 2006 will earn nearly zero in 2007. In my opinion, the only way to save these players is to get the
PGA to split the FedEx Cup into two tours. The mini-tours do not offer any where near the prize
money that these players will need to maintain what they
have earned in the past. Additional comments can be found below.
This email was sent to most players and agents Nov 06.
Why is this going to happen?
A long detailed explanation can be found at:
The players are aware of the rule that for all the regular
events and the playoff events, FedEx Cup points are only awarded to
players who earn prize money. Those that are cut get zero points.
When the Barclays Classic is played, only about 70 players out of
the 144 will get points. These will be the best players,
therefore, irregardless of where a player started before the
event, a certain number will be mathematically eliminated from
getting into the Tour Championship. Since these 70 prize winners
will all be in the Top 125, it will not affect the chance for any player to get into
the top 125. Those eliminated should be dropped from competition.
What all players are looking at is that players like Steve
Flesch, Jerry Kelly and Troy Matteson already played 32 or
more events in 2006. Another 79 players played 26 or more events.
These players have already shown they have the endurance to
maintain their skill over that many events It will be no big deal
for these 96 players to step up and play 37 events, if they can
get into that many events. This means any player who played less
than 26 events in 2006 is going to have to play at least 32 if not 35
events if the player wants to be in the Tour Championship. That
determination to play more than 32 events cannot be made until
Monday after THE MASTERS April 9, 2007, the 15th event. Before
that all players need to play every event possible. Everyone will
then have a better idea of what is happening.
Thus all the players are aware they are going to have to play
virtually every event possible to have a chance for the FedEx Cup
prize, be it cash or the annuity they are now talking about. Three
things are going to interfere or obstruct these plans.
1. Exhaustion. This affects both skill and the ability to even
play. Both Vijay Singh and Joe Durant looked tired to me on Sunday
of the Tour Championship. Joe Durant said after playing for the 11
event Fall Finish championship he was tired. Some players did not
even show up. What are players going to do when they must play at
least 32 events?
2. Outside commitments. Some players may decide to skip an
event for family reasons and some because of other obligations.
3. Expectations. Some players may decide to skip several events
because they are a Top 10 player (Tier 1) and feel that they can
get into all the big point events and will have enough points,
such that they do not have to play as many events as the Tier 2
players (next 77). Tier 3 players #88 through #144 know that they
may get into the playoffs, but will not make any money because
they will most likely get cut and so why try. Tier 4 players those
100-250 players outside the top three tiers can forget about
making any money. They will have to find other means of earning a
So what does this all mean?
If Tier 1 players end up in a Top 40 starting position for the
playoffs, they have a chance at the $10 Million 1st place prize.
If they are in the next 50 they have a chance at playing in the
Tour Championship. No chance for 1st or 2nd. Outside the Top 90
and they will not be in the Tour Championship.
If Tier 2 players end up in the Top 40 they have a chance to
play in the Tour Championship. No 1st or 2nd. Outside Top 40 and
they are not in the Tour Championship.
Tier 3 players. Forget it.