By: Victor Herrera
Headline Photo Credit: USA Today
The past week at TPC Sawgrass for The Players Championship was historic for the PGA Tour. This event signified just how far golf has come in the short time since the rivalry with LIV was created. The purse was a total of 25 million dollars. That is the most it has ever been for this tournament, with first place taking home a record 4.5 million. Even a player placing in 5th place took home over 1 million dollars. To have this kind of money is something that may not have happened if there wasn’t a rival golf league.
The winner of that 4.5 million dollar prize was now reclaimed world number 1, Scottie Scheffler. Scheffler has taken the PGA Tour by storm since the 2022 Waste Management Open in Phoenix. He has won 6 times on the PGA Tour. His latest win coming at The Players has placed him with hall of fame golfers Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods, as he is the third ever to hold The Players and Masters titles at the same time. While playing The Players Scheffler was accompanied by his grandmother who walked all 72 holes to watch him win it. Seeing the emotion on his face at the end when hugging his whole family, leaves no doubt he is one of the most liked guys on tour right now. Scheffler is a player who has continued to prove why he deserves to be at the top of the world ranking and can be in contention every week.
This is what the PGA Tour has needed since the creation of LIV and the rivalry between the two began. Rory McIlroy has taken on the spokesman role in helping save the PGA and battle LIV. This is why you may hear it called the “McIlroy Tour”. Although I believe his efforts are out of good faith he truly cares for the game of golf. The PGA Tour needed a superstar to take the fans by storm. Someone who is likable, and easy to root for. Although the tour has many favorites like Jon Rahm, Tony Finau, and Jordan Spieth. The tour needed someone who could consistently win and give the fans the Tiger Woods effect. This is something Rory has not been able to do for over 8 years. This run Scheffler is on has been compared to the run of Jordan Spieth in 2015. Although many can argue that Jordan has won more and has 3 majors. I believe it all goes to timing.
The timing right now is favoring Scottie Scheffler. When the PGA Tour needed a hero to step up when rivaled with a new league, where the top players were being poached. They found one with the world number 1 Scottie Scheffler. The battle between LIV and the PGA Tour will continue. While LIV found their star in Dustin Johnson early. It is safe to say that the true hero of the PGA Tour is the one and only Scottie Scheffler.