Cauley's textbook swing is starting to pay off
Four screws and a few bad memories. That's all that remains to remind Bud Cauley he tore the labrum in his left shoulder. Despite missing 15 months of pro golf after surgery in 2014, and needing a one-time medical exemption to keep playing on the PGA Tour, Cauley is once again showing signs of the potential he flashed as a rookie in 2012, when he had six top-10 finishes in five months.
"It took over a year of rehab for it to start to feel normal again, but right now I'm swinging the same as I did before the injury,"
Cauley says. "I've been hitting it pretty well, and this season was encouraging."
Cauley's 2017 season ended at the BMW Championship, when a T-27 finish wasn't enough to vault him into the top 30 in the FedEx Cup points race and a spot at the coveted Tour Championship. He finished 65th in the standings but nearly equaled his 2012 season performance with five top-10s.
The Florida native and former University of Alabama player had some of the best ball-striking stats on tour in 2017, finishing 29th in strokes gained/tee to green and 11th in strokes gained/approach the green.
"Would I have liked to have done better? Sure." Cauley says. "So I'll keep working."
Part of his success comes from having a technically sound swing, the kind that's fun to watch—especially with the driver, says his coach, Matt Killen. "There are a lot of tour pros who would love to have his swing," he says. "It's an aggressive move, but it's not wild. He knows how to generate power."