The 2021-22 PGA Tour season officially started in early September with the Fortinet Championship (formerly the Safeway Open). But with the calendar flipping to 2022, we are approaching – what is considered – the real start to the new tour season.
According to a piece published at Golfweek, there are several big changes in store for the tour in 2022.
Here’s a look at the top 10:
1. NBC Sports to Broadcast All Three FedEx Cup Playoff Events: It will mark the first time in history that NBC will have broadcast rights to the entire postseason. It’s part of a new TV deal that will see NBC and CBS televise all three FedExCup Playoffs events, alternating each year, starting with NBC in 2022.
2. ESPN Will Takeover PGA TOUR LIVE: ESPN+, the sports network’s premium stream, will be the exclusive distributor of ‘LIVE’ content – the tour’s exclusive video programming which follows the tournament’s marquee pairings and holes. The ESPN+ distribution starts with the Sentry Tournament of Champions.
3. The Farmers Insurance Open To Finish on Saturday: Due to CBS Sports’ conflicts with the NFL’s conference championship games, which will be played on Sunday, Jan. 30, the tournament annually pegged at Torrey Pines, will be contested from Wednesday through Saturday.
4. PGA Tour Will Co-Sanction the European Tour’s Scottish Open: Contested the week prior to The (British) Open Championship, the Scottish Open gives players a warmup event on a links style track in the same region. The field will be comprised of players from both tours, with Race to Dubai and FedEx Cup points being awarded. Additionally, European Tour players who don’t qualify for either event will have access to the PGA Tour’s opposite field events: the Barbasol Championship and Barracuda Championship, with the fields earning points from both tours.
5. World Golf Championships on Life Support: The 2021-22 Schedule includes only a single WGC event: the Dell Match Play Championship in Austin, Texas. (The China-based HSBC Champions was canceled for the second straight year, while the Mexico Championship will now be contested as a “regular” full-field tournament. The FedEx St. Jude Championship slides into the leadoff role of the three-event FedEx Cup postseason.)
6. The Mexico Championship Becomes the the Mexico Open: No longer played as a limited field WGC event, the Mexico stop, instead, will now be contested as a “regular” full-field tournament, and become a national open, giving the tour five on its schedule: Canadian Open, Mexico Open, U.S. Open, Scottish Open, and British Open.
7. PGA Tour Makes First Visit to Delaware: The 2022 BMW Championship will be played at Wilmington Country Club’s South Course. It will mark the first PGA Tour event played in the credit card capital of America. The event will be contested in late August as the second leg of the FedEx Cup Playoffs.
8. New England Summer Swing: The U.S. Open this year will be played at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass., giving the already-popular Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Conn. a perfect lead-in. The TPC River Highlands event, which regularly has stacked fields, may have one of its best ever.
9. Presidents Cup Sends Wells Fargo to New Locale: The Presidents Cup will be contested in September at the Quail Hollow Club, forcing the Wells Fargo Championship (annually played in May at Quail) to be moved to TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm in Maryland. This was the home course of the old Quicken Loans National, hosted by Tiger Woods.
10. Big Bump in FedEx Cup Cash: The PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup bonus pool — aka pro sports’ most ridiculous money grab — will pass out even more money this year to its top players, jumping from $60 million to $75 million. The FedEx Cup champion will now receive $18 million!
The Comcast Tour Top 10, which even the most diehard fan knows little about, will double its purse, from $10 to $20 million.
The Tour also upped its PLAYERS Championship purse from $15 million to $20 million, and its first-place prize from $2.7 million to $3.6 million, easily the biggest payday on tour.