News & ToursSeptember 12, 2017

After Walker Cup snub, NCAA Player of the Year Sam Burns officially turns pro

Burns Open
Ross Kinnaird(Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

The Walker Cup's ambiguous voting process lends itself to scrutiny, particularly when there's a snub as egregious as Sam Burns. Winner of the Jack Nicklaus Award as the Division I college Player of the Year, Burns was considered a shoo-in for the U.S. team. He didn't hurt his cause by following up his four-win campaign at LSU with a strong summer, highlighted by a T-6 at the Barbasol Championship, where his 18-under total was the lowest in tour history by an amateur.

Alas, when the roster was announced in late August, the 21-year-old found himself on the outside looking in. This was particularly cruel as Burns had held off his professional career strictly for the chance to compete at Los Angeles C.C., missing valuable time and events to earn his card.

But with the Walker Cup officially in the past, Burns announced on Tuesday he had turned pro, signing with the Legacy Agency.

Burns is expected to make his first start in November at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Las Vegas, per Golf Channel's Ryan Lavner. Because of his Nicklaus Award, Burns also gains entry into the Memorial, and should get the maximum seven exemptions allowed to non-tour members.


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