On Tuesday, ESPN senior reporter Bob Harig announced that the PGA Tour put in place a new bonus program for its players. This plan has sparked quite the debate over the past few days.
Instead of paying players based on their performance on the course, the PGA Tour would pay them based on how much they “move the needle.”
Harig said the PGA Tour’s idea is to “reward players who drive engagement with sponsors and fans.” This bonus pool would be worth $40 million, with $8 million of that going to the player at the top of the list.
Earlier today, Harig had some additional details to share regarding this bonus pool and how players can be eligible for it.
“Tour clarifies that to be eligible a player for bonus money, player needs to agree to one corporate day for the Tour as well as add an event to schedule beyond the strength of field requirement,” Harig tweeted.
Tour clarifies that to be eligible a player for bonus money, player needs to agree to one corporate day for the Tour as well as add an event to schedule beyond the strength of field requirement. https://t.co/TNx1xovtzV
— Bob Harig (@BobHarig) April 22, 2021
Although this plan from the PGA Tour is considered a controversial one, an unidentified player agent brought up an excellent point as to why those who “move the needle” should get compensated.
“In pro golf, there is a dynamic that exists in no other sport or business,” the player agent said, via ESPN. “The needle-movers, the guys who are responsible for revenue, go out and compete at the risk of not being compensated. Tom Cruise doesn’t shoot a movie for free and see how it goes. The CEO at IMB could have performance and stock-equity bonuses. But no one goes to work in a demand position and have no guaranteed compensation.”
Just to give golf fans an idea of how this program would look, Golfweek simulated the scores from the 2019 season to show how the final standings would look. Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Brooks Koepka, Phil Mickelson, Rickie Fowler, Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas, Justin Rose and Adam Scott would have benefited from this new bonus plan.