The PGA Tour has added a path to membership to the Korn Ferry Tour and its international tours in Canada, Latin American and China.
PGA Tour University will launch in 2021, with a ranking system of college players that will result in status on those developmental tours.
RANKINGS: The GCAA Coaches Poll
The PGA Tour will partner with the World Amateur Golf Ranking to compile the college rankings. In addition to college events, any PGA Tour or major championship appearance players earn by sponsor invitations, Monday qualifiers or through amateur events (such as getting into the Masters as a finalist in the U.S. Amateur) will count.
The first college ranking will be released later this summer.
"With the level of immediate success from the top collegiate players in the last decade, our team has done extensive research over time and developed a plan to provide a pathway for those players as they begin their journeys into the professional ranks," said PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan in a statement. "By focusing our efforts on players who have completed a minimum of four years, PGA TOUR University will not deter from the college game while ensuring its graduates benefit from their maturity and experience."
There is a catch: Players have to complete four years of college competition. But those who turn pro early often get enough PGA Tour sponsor invitations to have a good chance at gaining status on the big Tour.
"This is a tremendous opportunity for these players to begin their professional careers on a path to the PGA Tour," Korn Ferry Tour president Alex Baldwin said in another statement. "Just as importantly, we are able to continue building on the great momentum the Korn Ferry Tour and our International Tours have enjoyed in recent years by strengthening the field of competition with the addition of these collegiate stars."
This article is written by Garry Smits from The Florida Times-Union and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.