What's hot and not on the PGA Tour this season
Europe is decidedly not hot, neither is Tiger Woods. But playing less, chipping in, and "golfies" are on fire right now.
Can you believe we're on tournament 24 of 45 on the PGA Tour this season? That's right, we've blown past the halfway mark on our march to the Tour Championship at the end of September.
We've had a lot of fun moments -- though with three majors and the Ryder Cup still left I have to think some of the better ones are still to come -- and some, let's be honest, pretty boring finishes.
We've seen Bubba in green, Patrick in red, and Tiger not very much at all. We've seen the future and the past and that was all just on the weekend at Augusta.
Here's a look at what's hot and what's not hot on the PGA Tour right now.
1. First-time winners: Four of the last seven champions and six overall this season have been of the first-time variety.
2. Golfies: I'm dubbing selfies on a golf course or by a golfer "golfies." They're everywhere, too. Bubba Watson's might have been the most famous but he's never outdone by his buddy Rickie Fowler and then the RBC Heritage re-enacted that Oscar-winning one:
3. Youth: For all the talk of the old men at Augusta, of the 23 tournaments on tour this season, 12 have been won by golfers 30 or younger.
And none of those have been won by our Masters breakout star Jordan Spieth. I'm not going to call it a movement but it's something intriguing to watch out for during the remainder of the season.
4. Chipping in: Matt Jones got it started in Houston with a chip-in to beat Matt Kuchar, then Jordan Spieth wanted in at Augusta, then Kuchar flipped the script in Hilton Head with the best one yet:
5. Playing less: We obviously haven't seen Tiger Woods very much but we wouldn't have seen him much even if he was healthy. How about this, though? Combined tournaments between Rory McIlroy, Steve Stricker, Sergio Garcia, Adam Scott, and Jason Day (five of the top 15 in the world): 24.
1. Europe: Of the 23 PGA Tour events that have been played so far, US golfers have won 19 and Australian golfers have won four (including four of the last 10). That means zero for Europeans which means they'll win the Ryder Cup by 1.2 million.
2. The top 10: The top 10 golfers at the start of the calendar year have combined for exactly two PGA Tour wins since January (Zach Johnson and Matt Kuchar). There have been close calls (Adam Scott at Bay Hill, Rory McIlroy at the Honda Classic) but that's pretty pathetic from your elite class of golfers.
3. Driving accuracy: Of the top 19 golfers in driving accuracy on tour this year, only Zach Johnson has a win.
4. Injuries: Well, the problem is that they are hot which makes them not hot. Tiger's back, Phil's Oblique, Rose's shoulder, Day's thumb, and more. It makes for poor tournament play when the stars are veiled by ailing body parts.
5. Tiger Woods: It's been a bummer without him. I'm very much on the record that golf is better when the Big Cat is teeing it up and the numbers make it hard for you to argue with me.
Here is a future GIF of everyone who enjoys golf when Tiger announces his return from back surgery:
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