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Harry Higgs is headed back to PGA TOUR – this time maybe for good

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Harry Higgs clinched his spot in the top 30 on the 2024 Korn Ferry Tour Points List with a tie for fourth at the Compliance Solutions Championship. (PGA TOUR)

Harry Higgs clinched his spot in the top 30 on the 2024 Korn Ferry Tour Points List with a tie for fourth at the Compliance Solutions Championship. (PGA TOUR)

    Written by Adam Stanley @Adam_Stanley

    Harry Higgs is the funny guy, the extra-button-deep guy. He’s the "Big Rig," you know? But he’s also had an all-time run on the Korn Ferry Tour this season, and after his back-to-back victories this spring – both in playoffs, the first time that’s ever happened on the Korn Ferry Tour – he is officially #TOURBound, again.

    “It wasn’t a matter of if he was coming back, it was just a matter of when,” Higgs’ friend Joel Dahmen said at the RBC Canadian Open. “To see (him) go back-to-back … Harry’s one of the best players in the world and he’s showing it. Pretty cool that he’ll be back out (on the PGA TOUR) again next year.”

    Higgs clinched his spot in the top 30 on the 2024 Korn Ferry Tour Points List with a tie for fourth at the Compliance Solutions Championship in Oklahoma. He’s currently second on the season-long standings; the top 30 after the Korn Ferry Tour Championship presented by United Leasing & Finance will earn 2025 PGA TOUR membership. (That category is above the conditional TOUR category, 126-150 from the prior year’s FedExCup, on which Higgs currently plays.)

    Higgs finished 144th on the FedExCup Fall last year, outside the top 125 required to retain full PGA TOUR membership. With his status uncertain, he returned to the Korn Ferry Tour, by which he first earned a TOUR card via the 2019 Korn Ferry Tour Points List – finishing No. 5 on the season-long standings thanks to five top-10s and a win at the Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper. His best finish in the FedExCup standings was in his rookie year when he finished 55th. He was on track to stardom, buoyed by a T4 at the 2021 PGA Championship at Kiawah, but a gradual decline in form over the next couple of years led to a Korn Ferry Tour return.

    Some could have wallowed in that de facto relegation. Rather, Higgs rose to the occasion.

    The SMU alum had a solid start to his 2024 Korn Ferry Tour campaign, notching back-to-back top-20s in the Bahamas. After three straight missed cuts, he turned the tides in resounding fashion with consecutive wins at the AdventHealth Championship and the Visit Knoxville Open.

    Higgs’ final-hole dramatics were on display at both events as he knocked in a final-hole eagle pitch at the AdventHealth Championship just to get into a playoff. One might not have seen that coming – but such is golf. It was Higgs’ first win in five years – in his hometown of Kansas City, no less – and his first top-10 finish anywhere in more than a year. He came into the week having finished T50 at the Myrtle Beach Classic on TOUR, staying just inside the top 500 in the Official World Golf Ranking.

    Harry Higgs' incredible eagle hole-out to force playoff at AdventHealth Championship

    In Knoxville, he made a 37-foot eagle putt on the second playoff hole to clip Frankie Capan, authoring history as the first to win back-to-back Korn Ferry Tour events in extra holes. And it wasn’t just the feat; it was the way he went about the feat.

    But after his win in Tennessee, Higgs also did something even more memorable – he eulogized the late Grayson Murray in a touching and meaningful way.

    “I would challenge everybody here – and I’m going to do this myself as well each day – to say something nice to someone you love and also make a point to say something nice to someone you do not even know,” Higgs said after the win. “So, if we can, everybody here could be a difference, the difference, to brighten up somebody’s day. It could mean the world.”

    Harry Higgs honors Grayson Murray in winner's speech

    For Higgs’ next trick, he earned a spot at the U.S. Open in Pinehurst via Final Qualifying – also in a playoff. Higgs made two birdies on the extra holes to get through a 7-for-2 playoff.

    “There were also some dark moments where maybe a little bit of self-doubt creeps in,” Higgs said. “I focused on the work. I kept working and doing the things that I thought I needed to do to get better … It’s nice to get some results, but I feel like I’m on the right track for years to come.”

    No one can really plan for back-to-back victories to regain strong PGA TOUR status, but Higgs managed to put in the repetitive work that allowed him to at least have a chance to perform at the highest level. He didn’t plan, either, for a bout of skin cancer.

    Higgs had an “easy” procedure, he told “The Smylie Show” hosted by Smylie Kaufman, to have some skin cancer removed from his face. He wore a Band-Aid near his ear on his upper cheek for 10 days, but otherwise, he’s all good. It was caught super early and was a stark reminder that professional golfers aren’t invincible – they’re very susceptible to this form of cancer.

    His momentum wasn’t derailed, and he got to test himself against the best at the U.S. Open at Pinehurst. Consider that a warm-up before he returns to the PGA TOUR full-time.

    The Big Rig is back, baby.

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