Sunday, January 17, 2021

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2020-21 Rookie Watch

Since the last update that recapped the Mayakoba Golf Classic presented by UNIFIN where Andy Ogletree survived the cut in his debut as a professional and finished T46, the European Tour concluded its season at the DP World Tour Championship.

Among the golfers included in the table below, Thomas Detry finished T29 and Rasmus Højgaard tied for 51st in the 65-man field in Dubai.

When the results were official, the top 20 in the Race to Dubai standings became exempt into the World Golf Championship-Mexico Championship. It’s the first time that Detry (18th in the R2D) and Højgaard (16th) have qualified for a WGC. Lucas Herbert rested during the last two-and-a-half months of 2020, but he landed at 14th in points to secure his second start at Club de Golf Chapultepec (T58, 2020).

As it concerns PGA TOUR-sanctioned action, the Korn Ferry Tour is off until the LECOM Suncoast Classic on Feb. 18-21. It will go dark again for three straight weeks before it resumes and retains a regular schedule through the Finals that will end on the first Sunday of September.

Will Zalatoris, who remains atop the KFT points list, achieved Special Temporary Membership on the PGA TOUR in the fall, but the last perk associated with it wasn’t activated until Mayakoba was in the books. Upon its completion, the first reorder of the 2020-21 season occurred and he was added to Category 34 of the Priority Ranking (a/k/a the Beyond 150 Reshuffle), debuting in the first slot. This is as high as he can be positioned in the overall pecking order this season without a victory.

This placement can grant Zalatoris into opens on merit. Of course, he still can gain entry into many tournaments via sponsor exemptions, open qualifiersand top-10 finishes (in non-WGCs).

Zalatoris is among the 10 KFT members who earned special exemptions into the four additional events in the 2021 portion of the PGA TOUR season. All can be found beside the second-to-last bullet point under MEMBERSHIP in my 2020-21 fantasy preview. Starts in the additional events will not count against the allotment of seven sponsor exemptions for the non-members. (As a Special Temporary Member, Zalatoris no longer is subject to that restriction.) Of the 10, only former PGA TOUR member Stephen Jaeger has exhausted rookie eligibility.

Rafael Campos (only 2020-21 PGA TOUR rookie)
Starts
 = 4
Cuts Made = 1
FedExCup Points = 6.257
FedExCup Rank = 213
Last Start = T52 (Mayakoba)
Next = TBD

NOTE: None are in the field at the Sentry Tournament of Champions.

^ – The value beside Will Zalatoris reflects where he would rank among members with his total of equivalent FedExCup points. If he’s inside the top 125 at the conclusion of the Wyndham Championship, he’ll earn PGA TOUR membership in 2021-22. He can become a member this season with a victory on the PGA TOUR or with two more wins on the Korn Ferry Tour.

Non-members: Through the Mayakoba Golf Classic presented by UNIFIN

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