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PGA Tour Players Who Could Be Poised For A Major Breakthrough



Every season on the PGA Tour there are one or more players who stamp themselves as future stars, in particular 20-somethings fresh out of college or university or only a few years removed from it. Here’s a look at who I feel could be some of them.

I’m so confident about Viktor Hovland (Titleist Pro V1) that I think he might post a win in a major, either this season or some time in the next few years. The 24-year-old Norwegian, who honed his craft at Oklahoma State University, was part of Team Europe in the recent Ryder Cup. He turned pro in 2019 after posting the low amateur score in the Masters and U.S. Open. In 2020, he became the first Norwegian to win on the PGA Tour. Last season, he became the first Norwegian to win on the European Tour.

Were it not for a quadruple bogey on the final hole of the second round at the World Golf Championships-Workday Championship at The Concession, he might have won. But he showed remarkable poise when interviewed immediately after and pulled himself together for the weekend play to finish in a three-way tie for second. This was a quality field and he could have easily come undone.

Overall in 24 events, he made the cut 22 times and finished with a win, two seconds, two thirds and seven top-10 finishes. In the Tour Championship, he tied for fifth. He is just oozing with talent.

Sam Burns (Callaway Chrome Soft X) is atop the FedEx Cup standings in early in the 2021-22 season with a win in three starts. He has made the cut in each and placed no worse than the top-25. Last season the 25-year-old Louisiana native, who is a product of Louisiana State University, win his first PGA Tour event in the Valspar Championship, and placed second next time out in the AT&T Byron Nelson. A back injury forced him out of the PGA Championship. He tied for second in the World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational and tied for eighth in the Tour Championship.

He has only been a full-time PGA Tour player since 2019, so he has a huge ceiling.

When the U.S. Team was picked for the Ryder Cup, Burns was not among them, although there was a slew of good, young players from which to choose.

Scottie Scheffler (Titleist Pro V1) was one of those players selected for Team USA. The 25-year-old New Jersey native, who attended the University of Texas, has yet to win a PGA event in 58 events, but last season posted a second in the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play and a third in the Memorial Tournament. He also placed fifth in the WGC-Workday Championship at The Concession. What stuck out for me was he always seemed to be a factor, particularly with his driving and putting. In four events on the PGA Tour in 2019, he earned just under $140,000. The next season in 29 events he won more than $2.8 million. Last season he won more than $4.5 million. I think he’s on the verge of winning his first PGA Tour event this season.

Christiaan Bezuidenhout (Titleist Pro V1) is one of many South Africans who have traditionally shown their ability to do something dramatic on the PGA Tour. The 27-year-old has played primarily on the European Tour, but in 23 starts on the PGA Tour since 2019 he has made the cut 19 times, including all 12 in 2021 in his first full season. In 10 starts in 2020, he won almost $275,000. Last season he won almost $730,000. He posted only one top-10 finish, which happened in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, but I think he’s poised for something better this season.



Perry Lefko
Perry Lefko
Perry Lefko is an award-winning writer who has published nine books, three of them bestsellers. He has been involved in sports writing for more than 35 years and has interviewed many superstar athletes. He lives in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada and enjoys watching golf and playing it.

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