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Rory McIlroy averages 1.94 yards per pound, which makes him a 160-pound beast

By Luke Kerr-Dineen

Whenever Rory McIlroy hits his driver well, a lot of anecdotes start flying around. Is Rory the best driver of all time? Who knows -- that question is so large it's almost pointless to comprehend. But it's hard to believe that at this moment, there's anyone who gets more out of their game off the tee than Rory. Here's why:

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There are reams of data to suggest that the further a player drives the ball, the more of an advantage they have. That generally puts guys taller and bigger than the 160-pound, 5'10" McIlroy at a greater advantage -- but Rory doesn't seem to mind. His power-centric golf swing allows him to blow through that disadvantage and generate more yards-per-pound than anyone else in the top 10 of the Official World Golf Ranking. Only Sergio Garcia comes close, and together they're the only two in the top 10 who weigh less than 180 pounds, according to their official weight listed by the PGA Tour.

Ranking Name Weight Distance Yards-per-Pound
1 Rory McIlroy 160 310 1.94
2 Adam Scott 180 302 1.68
3 Sergio Garcia 160 295 1.84
4 Henrik Stenson 190 292 1.54
5 Justin Rose 195 295 1.51
6 Matt Kuchar 195 283 1.45
7 Bubba Watson 180 315 1.75
8 Jim Furyk 185 279 1.51
9 Jason Day 195 302 1.55
10 Tiger Woods* 185 293 1.58

And the power he generates doesn't just mean Rory drives it far relative to the best players. It means he drives it far relative to all players. His 1.94 yards-per-pound average makes him third on tour in driving distance and puts him alongside Bubba Watson as the only two players in the top 10 of both rankings. Charles Howell III is one of the few players with a better pound-for-pound average than Rory, but that's skewed slightly by his extremely skinny frame -- he's 5'11", 155 pounds, according to the tour.

Ranking Name Weight Distance Yards-per-Pound
1 Bubba Watson 180 314.8 1.75
2 Dustin Johnson 190 311.0 1.66
3 Rory McIlroy 160 310.3 1.94
4 J.B. Holmes 190 308.2 1.62
5 Andrew Loupe 180 306.8 1.70
6 Brooks Koepka 186 306.2 1.65
7 Robert Garrigus 190 305.5 1.61
8 Jason Kokrak 225 304.7 1.35
9 Jhonattan Vegas 230 304.6 1.32
10 Charles Howell III 155 304.2 1.96

In fact, there are so few players with a better yards-per-pound average that, of everyone in the top 50 of the world ranking, only Rickie Fowler squeezes more out of his frame than Rory. And even in that case, Rory still outdrives Rickie by more than 13 yards on average.

Ranking Name Weight Distance Yards-per-Pound
18 Rickie Fowler 150 297 1.98
1 Rory McIlroy 160 310 1.94
47 Joost Luiten* 154 287 1.86
19 Charl Schwartzel 160 297 1.86
3 Sergio Garcia 160 295 1.84
22 Victor Dubuisson* 163 300 1.84
40 Graham DeLaet 165 302 1.83
43 Francesco Molinari 159 289 1.82
12 Martin Kaymer 165 296 1.79
33 Thongchai Jaidee 160 285 1.78

In conclusion: Rory McIlroy. Beast.

*An asterisk denotes players who haven't played enough rounds to have an official average listed by the PGA Tour. In those cases, their average from the European Tour was used. In Tiger's case, his average from the 2013 season was used.

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