On Wednesday morning, Rory McIlroy was announced as the PGA Tour Player of the Year. The only question was a simple one–was it by unanimous vote?
As depicted by the Golf Channel’s Jason Sobel, the PGA Tour does not release this type of elementary information. They keep it locked up. Perhaps in case of the end times, must we not know how the votes were tallied!
Rory McIlroy’s winning of the award comes as no surprise to anyone in the golf media, although consideration and murmurs of Martin Kaymer and Bubba Watson were rumored. This comes on the heels of the PGA Player of the Year award he already won a few weeks ago. The trophies continue to find their way to Rory’s mantle.
Rory’s summer was one of epic proportions. His two major championships and three total wins were enough for him to earn the honor. Incredibly, he finished in the top-25 in all 17 events he entered. The honor is Rory’s second Jack Nicklaus award in three seasons.
McIlroy earned the Arnold Palmer Award as the PGA Tour leading money winner with earnings of $8,280,096. He also was the winner of the Byron Nelson Award for adjusted scoring average at 68.83 for the season.
The more interesting award was for that of young Chesson Hadley, who was crowned as the PGA Tour’s Rookie of the Year. The tall, thin, North Carolinan was the only first-year player to win on the Tour this year– winning the Puerto Rico Open. Hadley’s jaunty personality has made him a popular man on Tour. Before his time on the PGA Tour, Hadley was a two-time winner on the Web.com Tour in 2013 and an All-American at Georgia Tech.
In 29 events on Tour, Hadley registered 8 top-25 finishes. His game is complete, as he ranked inside the top-70 in some of the main of the major statistical categories. He finished 49th in the season-long FedExCup standings.
The element to consider when looking at PGA Tour Rookie of the Year winners is that often times, these young golfers have no experience on the venues they are playing. Playing golf without a bearing is a difficult endeavor. To capture a win and some high finishes is a testament to Hadley’s talent and hard work.