Pro Golf Weekly

The Mind-Boggling Statistics of This Professional Golfer

Quiz time! A certain PGA Tour golfer has accumulated the following stats:

  • 3rd in Total Driving (80)
  • 2nd in Greens in Regulation Percentage (71.68%)
  • 17th in Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee
  • 5th in Back Nine Scoring Average
  • 24th in Scoring Average (70.6)

Name that golfer:

  1. Henrik Stenson
  2. Dustin Johnson
  3. Adam Scott
  4. The World’s 204th ranked golfer, who has not been in Sunday contention in ages.

Stenson would make sense – as he’s been one of the most well-rounded golfers on tour for years, and always seems to be great tee-to-green.

Johnson would be a logical choice as well, since he’s long off the tee, and is known to have one of the best back nine scoring averages.

Scott, with one of the purest swings in golf, would seem to be near the top in most of those aforementioned statistics too.

Obviously, the answer is number 4 on the list. And the mystery golfer’s name is Lucas Glover, the 36-year-old stoic golfer, and 2009 U.S. Open Champion, who has been mostly MIA since that victory.

Glover has missed the last two editions of the Fed Ex Cup Playoffs (and 3 of the last four), and has not won a tournament since he out dueled Jonathan Byrd in a playoff at Quail Hollow in 2011.

The problem with Glover’s game has been putting. Not just bad putting, but dreadful, sub-Sergioesque putting. Glover is currently 169th in strokes gained putting, 175th in total putting, and 175th in putts per round (he has finished dead last in the statistic the previous two seasons).

Lucas Glover's Perplexing Stats

3

RANK - TOTAL DRIVING

2

RANK - GREENS IN REGULATION

175

RANK - TOTAL PUTTING

That kind of putting looks terrible next to anyone not named Charlie Beljan, the man who is last or near last in every meaningful statistic, or at least he was until he no longer had enough qualifying rounds to be ranked.

Glover also does not help himself much in the short game with his bunker play (ranks 169th in sand saves).

With his long and short games being diametrically opposite of each other, it leaves fans wondering what heights Glover’s game could soar to if he could get even average results with the flat stick, like he had earlier in his career, when he would routinely earn $1.5-3 million per season.

If there is good news for Glover, it’s that he has shown some ability. The consensus among long-time professionals is that putting is the most intuitive part of the game. For a lot of people, they can either putt, or they can’t; there is a ceiling to how much better they can get.

Glover is unlikely to ever be an elite putter, but if he can get his head back to where it once was on the greens, he could become one of the more feared competitors on tour.

Lucas Glover PGA Tour Earnings

  • Money Earned (in millions)

Joel Cook

Joel Cook is Pro Golf Weekly's Lead Writer. He is a member of the Golf Writer's Association of America.

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