PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – The nominees for 2012 PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year were released on Monday -- Charlie Beljan, Jonas Blixt, Bud Cauley, John Huh and Ted Potter Jr.
Players were nominated by the PGA TOUR Player Directors and members of the Player Advisory Council (PAC). The awards are determined by a member vote, with PGA TOUR members who played in at least 15 official money events in 2012 eligible to vote. The balloting process ends on Nov. 30, with the winner to be announced in early December.
A quick look at each Rookie of the Year nominee:
CHARLIE BELJAN: Won one event (Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic), posted three-top-10 finishes, finished 63rd on official money list and 160th in FedExCup points
JONAS BLIXT: Won one event (Frys.com Open), posted five top-10 finishes, finished 34th on the official money list and 71st in FedExCup points
BUD CAULEY: Posted six-top 10 finishes, finished 44th on official money list and 38th in FedExCup points
JOHN HUH: Won one event (Mayakoba Golf Classic), posted four top-10 finishes, finished 28th on official money list and 29th in FedExCup points
TED POTTER JR.: Won one event (The Greenbrier Classic) for his only top-10 finish, finished 62nd on official money list and 93rd in FedExCup points
Now it’s your turn: Who do you think will win this year’s Rookie of the Year?
Following an opening-round 63, John Huh reflects on his play in the 2012 Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open with Fred Albers from SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio.
John Huh meets with the media and talks about keeping his goals in his first TOUR Championship start.
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
ATLANTA -- A year ago, John Huh watched the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola on TV.
He was playing in a tournament in Korea. Huh distinctly remembers what he calls simply "the shot" as Bill Haas got up and down from the water hazard beside the 17th green on the way to that dynamic dual victory in the TOUR Championship and FedExCup.
How times have changed. On Thursday, the 22-year-old Huh will tee it up at East Lake for the first time, capping a stellar rookie season that saw him win the Mayakoba Golf Classic in an eight-hole playoff over Robert Allenby and tie for second at the Valero Texas Open.
Huh has a total of four top-10s and enters his first TOUR Championship ranked 26th in the FedExCup -- just one shot lower than where Haas was a year ago.
"I feel really lucky to be here, especially as a rookie, and only top 30 to compete this week," Huh said. “… And the fact that Bill Haas was the 25th last year and he won the tournament and the FedEx, I believe I still have a chance. …
“But I need a little help from the guys in the top. So I'm just going to do my best and see what's going on."
Huh, who was born in New York and spent his youth in Korea, Chicago and Los Angeles, had modest goals for his rookie campaign on TOUR.
"Before I started the season, I told myself I want to just play a weekend, which is not easy to do that on the PGA TOUR, making the cut and playing a weekend, and being in contention," Huh said. "That was my goal before the season started, and it changed a little bit in the middle of the year.”
That's because Huh broke through in his sixth start on TOUR and nearly picked up another victory in Texas where he opened with a 44 but shot par or better on his next 45 holes to get in contention. Huh had a chip for birdie on the 72nd hole there that could have landed him in his second playoff.
He won’t have to worry about a cut this week at East Lake. But Huh will need to stay focused over all 72 holes against the elite field of 30.
"Some tournaments I feel like I've been too aggressive because of changing my goal a little, but I think I should just stay where I'm at right now and just feel like I play the weekend first and play good and finish well," Huh said.
All times Eastern.
Tuesday, Sept. 18
11 a.m. -- Jim Furyk (No. 18)
1 p.m. -- 2012 Payne Stewart Award winner revealed
Wednesday, Sept. 19
Tiger Woods (No. 2) – Following morning sponsor breakfast
Rory McIlroy (No. 1) – Following morning sponsor breakfast
10 a.m. – Nick Watney (No. 3)
11:15 a.m. – John Huh (No. 26)
1 p.m. – Luke Donald (No. 15)
2:30 p.m. – PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem
Phil Mickelson (No. 4)
Brandt Snedeker (No. 5)
The top 30 in FedExCup points are headed to East Lake for the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola. Here’s a look at John Huh, one of the 30 players who will contend for the FedExCup title.
SCENARIOS TO WIN FEDEXCUP: For Huh to win the
FedExCup, he MUST win the TOUR Championship and have the following
scenarios fall into place:
> Rory McIlroy (No. 1) finishes 21st* or worse
> Tiger Woods (No. 2) finishes 6th or worse
> Nick Watney (No. 3) finishes 4th* or worse
> Phil Mickelson (No. 4) finishes T-3 or worse
> Brandt Snedeker (No. 5) finishes in a 3-way tie for 2nd or worse
> Louis Oosthuizen (No. 6) finishes T-2 or worse
> *Tie for the FedExCup
Click here for scenarios of every player
SEASON IN REVIEW: Prior to this year, Huh had never played in a PGA TOUR or Web.com Tour event. The 22-year-old wasted little time finding his footing, though, with a top 10 in his second start and a hard-fought playoff victory over Robert Allenby in his fifth at the Mayakoba Golf Classic. Huh, who had started the final round seven strokes behind Daniel Summerhays, needed eight extra holes to take down the veteran from Australia. He also tied for second at the Valero Texas Open despite opening with a 44 on the front nine. He is the only rookie playing at East Lake. – Helen Ross
PATH TO TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP: Here’s a look at
Huh’s results in the first three events of the 2012 FedExCup
Click here for Playoffs Tracker of every player.
|FEC ranking after event||
PREVIOUS FEDEXCUP FINISHES: This is Huh’s first FedExCup Playoffs appearance.
EAST LAKE HISTORY: This is Huh’s first PGA TOUR start at East Lake.
ALBERS’ QUICK TAKE: Fred Albers, on-course
correspondent for SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio, provides a quick look at
What a rookie year. I had never heard of Huh last year at this time. I kept thinking his game would slump following his victory this spring, but he has been consistent. I can easily see John being a multi-winner on TOUR.
PLAYER PAGE: Click here for more on John Huh
Now it’s your turn. How do you think Huh will fare at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola?
The pairings have been unveiled for this week’s PGA TOUR Matchups Game on Facebook. You can check out the Matchups for the HP Byron Nelson Championship below, or on the PGA TOUR’s Facebook page.
Participants have until 6 a.m. ET Thursday to make their picks. Log on to the PGA TOUR Facebook page and click the Matchups link to make your picks for this week, or to sign up.
|Matt Kuchar vs. Keegan Bradley||Last week's champ vs. last year's champ|
|Phil Mickelson vs. Ernie Els||Two World Golf Hall of Famers at Byron's place|
|Adam Scott vs. Jason Day||Two Aussies, two former champs in this event|
|Jhonattan Vegas vs. Ryan Palmer||Both have strong Texas ties, and both are bombers|
|Jason Dufner vs. John Huh||Both scored their first career wins earlier in 2012|
By John Schwarb, PGATOUR.COM
One of the year’s better stories on the PGA TOUR was authored last week by Ben Curtis, ending a six-year winless drought on TOUR with a win at the Valero Texas Open.
Curtis was the Cinderella champion won the 2003 British Open (Valero T2 finisher John Huh was 13 years old then) and two events in 2006, then a few years later dropped off the radar. This year he as many starts on the European Tour than the PGA TOUR (three each) before winning in Texas.
In winning by two shots at TPC San Antonio, Curtis had another first of sorts – the first win for Titleist’s AP1 712 irons. Most Titleist players on TOUR play the AP2 irons, which have more of a traditional blade feel and less offset. The AP1 irons have a high-density tungsten sole weight positioned toward the toe, increasing ball speed on off-center hits and reducing twist at impact.
Curtis had a 4-iron through pitching wedge in his AP1 set – which we’ll see a lot more of in the U.S. now that Curtis has winner’s status again on TOUR.
GOLDEN: Ping has enjoyed a great season so far, with wins on TOUR by Mark Wilson (Humana Challenge), John Huh (Mayakoba Golf Classic), Hunter Mahan (World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship, Shell Houston Open).
All of its players have a gold-plated replica of their winning putters put in Ping’s vault in Scottsdale, Ariz., and sometimes even more special additions are put in the vault. A double eagle at the Masters would qualify, so a gold S56 4-iron was added to the vault recently in honor of Louis Oosthuizen’s feat. He also received one for his collection.
WEEKENDER: David Duval tested a Callaway Razr Fit driver against a Titleist 910D3 and TaylorMade RBZ last week, with the Callaway going into his bag at Valero at 9.1 degrees loft. He ended up making his first cut of the season after seven misses, and shot his best round on Sunday (71) to finish in a tie for 60th.
BY A HAIR: Amazing how just the slightest adjustments make all the difference for TOUR players. At TPC San Antonio, Derek Lamely thought a flatter lie angle would help to stop losing shots to the left with his 15-degree Callaway Diablo Octane Tour fairway wood . Callaway techs adjusted the angle by one degree – from 59 to 58 – allowing him to hit a baby fade. No more lefts. He finished T35 at Valero, his second-best finish of the season.
WINNER’S BAG: Curtis at the Valero Texas
Driver: Titleist 910D3 (Aldila RIP NV 65X shaft, 8.5 degrees)
Fairway wood: Titleist 910Fd, (Aldila RIP 80X shaft, 13.5 degrees)
Hybrids: Titleist 910H (Aldila hybrid NV 85X shafts; 18, 20 degrees)
Irons: Titleist AP1 712 (Dynamic Gold shafts; 4-PW)
Wedges: Titleist Vokey Spin Milled C-C 200 (52 degrees), C-C TVD (58 degrees)
Putter: Titleist Scotty Cameron Newport 2
Ball: Titleist Pro V1x