He's got a beef

Former major champ blasts PGA Tour for smaller playoff fields, 'useless' PAC and 'inevitable' deal with Saudis

August 04, 2023

Lucas Glover shot 64 in the second round of the Wyndham Championship.

Jared C. Tilton

In the last regular-season event of the PGA Tour season, Lucas Glover was a guy who was primed to go off with his frustrations. On Friday, the four-time tour winner and 2009 U.S. Open champ shot a 64 in the Wyndham Championship that moved him into a tie for third, two shots behind leader Russell Henley.

Glover, 43, has had a strong last couple of months, with three top-six finishes in his last four starts heading into this week’s event in his home state of North Carolina. But even if he keeps his current top-five spot in the Wyndham, Glover is currently projected to finish 84th in the FedEx Cup standings and not make the playoffs because, for the first time, only the top 70 advance.

He did not hold back on what he thought of the new system.

“It’s very contrived to me, the whole thing. I don't even really understand it,” Glover said in his post-round press conference. “I think if you finish in the top 125, I don't know why you don't get to play next week. That's my opinion. Been pretty outspoken in that. I think it's silly that it's only 70. I think it's silly that we're playing 70 in these elevated events [next season]. ...  I think it's taken a lot of these last few tournaments of the regular season, a lot of that drama."

Later, in an interview with Golfweek writer Adam Schupak, Glover continued to express his grievances, saying he has stopped sharing his concerns to those who serve on the Player Advisory Committee. “It’s a waste of breath, a waste of time,” said the veteran who is making his 512th tour appearance this week. “I’ve been out here long enough to know that it doesn’t matter. The PAC’s useless. They’re going to do what they’re going to do.”

The PGA Tour is expected to announce its 2024 schedule next week, and as Golfweek originally reported, the designated events figure to have between 70 and 80 players competing—a huge cut from the largest tour fields of 156.

“I don’t understand why it’s going to be 70-80. We’ve seen the World Golf Championship model doesn’t work,” Glover told Golfweek. “We don’t play those anymore. So, why that number? They have models and all this and that, but no one has convinced me that this is better, other than the guys who stood to be rewarded the most pushed for it and our brass thought they had to appease them. If that’s the case, that’s the case, but as we’ve seen that’s not working because we have another deal in place.

“Obviously, what they did last year at this time [following the players-only meeting at the BMW Championship] didn’t work or else we wouldn’t have to do all this other stuff. We’ll never get somebody to admit that, but now it’s pretty obvious. They’re trying to push it back into the tube a little bit, which is pretty impossible.”

Glover contended that it was “inevitable,” due to the financial reality, that the PGA Tour would have to work with the Saudi Investment Fund that started LIV Golf a year ago and continued to be a threat to entice other players to join the upstart circuit. The two entities came to a framework agreement on June 6 that has yet to be finalized.

“We couldn’t continue to go down the road we were going. Anyone with a brain knows (the tour) didn’t have the money,” Glover said. “[LIV] was going to drag this lawsuit out as long as they could. The tour can’t prop up $20 million purses forever; pretty sure the sponsors don’t want to do it either. They’re not getting the return. That’s evident. We know that too. We’ve got some valuations of under $5 million, and you’re asking the sponsor for $20 million. That doesn’t work. So, of course, we were going to have to do something. It was just a matter of where the money was coming from.”