Aside from LIV if you want a glaring look into the haves and the have nots in professional golf then you only need look at how much the Players Impact Program paid out this year.
This pay-out debuted in 2021 to reward players for boosting engagement and publicity of the PGA Tour.
The criteria for which the players are ranked comes from their internet searches and the number of unique news articles, the duration that a player’s sponsor logo appears on screen during a weekend PGA Tour telecast, the player’s general awareness score and the player's social media score.
All of which added up to Rory McIlroy picking up $15m and Tiger Woods, who had won the first two versions. of the program, receiving $12m despite playing only six rounds of golf up to this point.
In its first year $40m went to 10 players, in 2022 and 2023 $100m was spread out over 20 players. Next year there will be $50m awarded to the top 10 players.
This is on top of all the raised prized funds and, if it does its job, then it will desist the big names from jumping ship to LIV though the sums that they can offer are on another level altogether. This year Jon Rahm was third on the PIP, pocketing $9m, and he's now been rumoured to have been offered $600m to join LIV.
The results were shared by PGA Tour player Nate Lashley who finished in 96th spot in the FedExCup this season and he commented what most people are probably thinking.
“How many golf fans actually know what the PIP on the PGA Tour is? Would love to hear from golf/PGA fans if they think this $100 million was spent well? There’s 150-200 members of the PGA Tour and they just spent $100 million on 20 players. Seems a little ridiculous. Time for new leadership on the PGA Tour. This is an absolute kick in the face to the rest of the PGA Tour players.”
None of this is new news but it remains a nonsense. On top of his Open win Brian Harman managed to squeeze in there in 20th spot, landing himself $2m, just ahead of Patrick Cantlay.