2015-2016 Rookie Rankings
June 27, 2016
By Rob Bolton, PGATOUR.COM
- Patton Kizzire was the leading money winner during the 2015 Web.com Tour season. (Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
There are 17 rookies on the PGA TOUR in 2015-16. This feature provides a subjective ranking updated weekly. The Rookie of the Year is voted by PGA TOUR members who make at least 15 starts.
SNAPSHOT: When Harold Varner III putted out for par at the par-4 18th hole at Congressional Country Club's Blue Course in the final round of the Quicken Loans National, it was only a matter of moments before he knew for sure that it was for a berth into The Open Championship. The tournament's low rookie finished alone in seventh place but grabbed the final of four exemptions up for grabs into the season's third major. (The top-four finishers not otherwise exempt, inside the top 12 at the QLN, were rewarded.)
Smylie Kaufman placed joint-10th at Congressional. He also earned a trip to Royal Troon via his placement in the FedExCup standings. At the conclusion of the tournament, the top five and ties inside the top 20 became exempt into the major. Kaufman is 18th. Both he and Varner III will be making their debuts in The Open Championship.
Rob Oppenheim's career-best T10 gave the rookies three top 10s of 10 in the field. It's the third time this season that at least three rookies finished inside the top 10 in the same tournament (Shriners, Zurich Classic).
Rhein Gibson recorded a T73 at the Web.com Tour's Air Capital Classic. Fellow PGA TOUR rookie Lucas Lee withdrew before the tournament started.
In what was his debut on the Japan Golf Tour, Emiliano Grillo lost in a playoff at the ISPS Handa Global Cup when South Korea’s Jon-Won Park birdied the first hole of sudden death. Since securing his PGA TOUR card, Grillo has competed four times abroad.
LOW ROOKIE: Harold Varner III, 7th. Seventh time (T5, Mayakoba; T13, Sony; T26, Northern Trust; T9, Valero; T24, Wells Fargo; T57, PLAYERS).
CAREER-BEST FINISHES (AND TIES): Rob Oppenheim (T10).
* - In the field at the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational as of June 26.
# - In the field at the Barracuda Championship as of June 26.
^ - Byeong-Hun An has Special Temporary Membership but is ineligible for the FedExCup Playoffs unless he wins a tournament. As a result, the number in parentheses in the FedExCup Rank column reflects where he would rank among members.
Through the Quicken Loans National
Rank Name FedExCup Rank Best Finish Starts Cuts Made Top 10s 1 *Smylie Kaufman 18 1st 21 15 4 2 *Emiliano Grillo 31 P1 17 14 1 3 #Patton Kizzire 40 T2 21 16 5 4 Harold Varner III 60 T5 22 15 4 5 *^Byeong-Hun An (80) P2 11 8 2 6 #Brett Stegmaier 105 T2 23 13 2 7 #Michael Kim 110 T16 (2) 22 17 - 8 #Bronson Burgoon 122 T14 21 13 - 9 #Hiroshi Iwata 134 T4 23 11 1 10 #Rob Oppenheim 143 T10 15 11 1 11 #Dawie van Der Walt 165 T17 19 9 - 12 #Thomas Aiken 173 T15 17 8 - 13 #Andrew Landry 184 T15 12 6 - 14 #Abraham Ancer 193 T18 13 3 - 15 #Lucas Lee 205 T36 11 3 - 16 #Rhein Gibson 214 T52 15 6 - 17 Patrick Cantlay n/a - - - -
NOTE: A player’s rookie season ("Rookie Year") is defined as the season in which he becomes a PGA TOUR member (including Special Temporary Members) and plays in 10 or more events as a member or finishes in the Top 125 on the Official FedExCup Points List, the Top 125 on the Official PGA TOUR Money List or qualifies as a Top 125 - Nonmember, whichever occurs first. Further, for purposes of this definition, a new member (including Special Temporary Members) shall not be eligible for the PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year if he has previously played in more than seven (7) Official PGA TOUR Money events as a professional in any prior season.