A Moment of Respect for Jim Furyk

Last week at The Genesis Open, Adam Scott won and moved to sixth on the all-time PGA Tour money list. The all-time list was circulated, and this is the top ten:

RankPlayerEarnings
1Tiger Woods$120,660,780
2Phil Mickelson$91,299,439
3Jim Furyk$71,234,957
4Vijay Singh$71,216,128
5Dustin Johnson$62,240,283
6Adam Scott$55,167,262
7Justin Rose$53,585,559
8Rory McIlroy$51,791,750
9Matt Kuchar$51,087,273
10Sergio Garcia$50,044,265
Courtesy of the PGA Tour

Let’s dive in. First, it’s clear that golfers of the last twenty five years or so will have the advantage. Money on the PGA Tour rocketed up with the rise of Tiger Woods. It’s therefore no surprise that The Big Cat is atop the list, and by a considerable amount. Phil Mickelson being in second isn’t shocking either – he’s a generational talent and a clear Hall of Famer. Skipping over Furyk, we have Vijay Singh, who had years of success on the PGA Tour and is the ultimate grinder. Singh probably deserves his own breakdown, frankly. The next few guys on the list – Adam Scott, Dustin Johnson, Justin Rose, and Rory McIlroy – are who you’d probably expect. These are some of the best golfers in the world, and all of them have been #1 in the world. Rounding out the top-10 are two guys who turned out to maybe not be as wonderful humans as we once thought. Matt Kuchar has won a LOT – though never anything too important – and Sergio Garcia is a lot better golfer than I want to admit, given that he’s also a petulant child. While we should probably delve into Kuchar, this top ten isn’t that shocking.

Except for Furyk. I was absolutely floored to see him this high. I’ve always thought of him as a very good, but not great golfer. I was wrong.

If you know Jim Furyk, you probably think of him as that guy with the weird ass swing. Indeed, he has a loop in his swing that looks like it should not work, but it does. It’s a good reminder to all of us to swing your own swing – just get the damn club back to square when you hit the ball.

It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish. Courtesy of Wikipedia and Creative Commons.

He’s also someone who is basically bald and can often sport a frightening tan line. But let’s get into HOW he got to be so high on the money list, and you’ll soon realize that Furyk is a goddamned legend.

First, his major record is legit. He won the U.S. Open back in 2003 at Olympia Fields. He’s come in second three other times at the U.S. Open. In The Open, he’s finished fourth four separate times. In the PGA Championship, he’s finished in second, and in The Masters he’s finished fourth twice. All in all, he has 16 top-5’s, 23 top-10’s and 41 top-25’s in the 92 majors he’s played in (and he’s made the cut in 73 total.) NOTE: He’s also finished second in the “fifth major” – the PLAYERS – twice, with three other top-5’s.

Then, he’s also (according to Wikipedia) known as “Mr. 58.” This is because he’s the only guy to shoot a 58 in a competitive PGA tournament at The Travelers in 2016. He also shot a 59 a few years earlier. These were not at the apex of his career, but twenty years after joining the PGA Tour. He’s collected 17 wins on the PGA Tour, which ties him for 49th all-time.

He’s gotten as high as #2 in world ranking, but his consistency is what gets him here. With the exception of his injury plagued 2004, my guy spent 22 straight years with exempt status (and no worse than 71st). This year, he’s already won more than $2,600,000. Furyk can rake it, and he’s absolutely one of the best golfers of his generation. It’s time for us to recognize that.

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