KORN FERRY TOUR INSIDER
Season 3 of 'One Shot Away' showcases raw emotions, realities of chasing TOUR dreams
April 13, 2022
By Kevin Prise , PGATOUR.COM
- April 13, 2022
- Taylor Montgomery, who narrowly missed a TOUR card last season, is among this season's cast of One Shot Away. (Mackenzie Perez/PGA TOUR)
Trevor Werbylo remembers attending the Korn Ferry Tour’s Utah Championship presented by Zions Bank as a high schooler in 2016.
The Arizona native and his dad decided to follow Ollie Schniederjans that week. They enjoyed Schniederjans’ demeanor and approach to the game. After the tournament was over, they continued to track Schniederjans’ week-by-week results on the Korn Ferry Tour, and eventually on the PGA TOUR after he secured his card via the Regular Season Points List.
“The few years after watching him in Utah, I was always watching and following him when he would play well,” said Werbylo, a Korn Ferry Tour rookie who will be featured on this year’s season of "One Shot Away."
“My dad and I would notice and tune in and be a little more interested in it. If you’re following the Korn Ferry Tour and you start rooting for certain players, I think you create a loyalty to players once they get out on the PGA TOUR. I think it grows the fan base and gets more people involved in watching golf.”Trevor Werbylo was joined by the "One Shot Away" crew for a seven-mile hike earlier this spring. (Elijah Bowin/PGA TOUR)
This week debuts the third season of One Shot Away, the six-episode network special that tracks Korn Ferry Tour pros through the ups and downs of chasing their PGA TOUR dreams. The first episode is set to air at 2:30 p.m. ET Saturday on CBS Sports.
The first episode will introduce fans to the 2022 cast including China’s Carl Yuan – who has recorded three top-three finishes this season to cross the fail-safe threshold of 900 Points and secure his first PGA TOUR card – in addition to Taylor Montgomery, who finished No. 26 on each of The 25 and The Finals 25 in 2020-21, Korn Ferry Tour rookies John Pak, Vincent Norrman, the aforementioned Werbylo, and more to be added as the season unfolds.
The first two seasons saw several cast members achieve their TOUR dreams, providing a look behind the scenes at players’ lives on and off the course. One Shot Away went to Nick Hardy’s hometown par-3 course outside Chicago to play a few holes with his dad John, just as they did while Nick was falling in love with the game. The crew went ice skating at home in Arizona with Dylan Wu, also sampling dumplings that Wu cooked with fiancée Margaret. Both players progressed to earn their PGA TOUR cards, and the show tracked their progression through the latter portion of the 2020-21 combined season, paying off at The 25 TOUR card ceremony at the Pinnacle Bank Championship in August.
The show captures the other side of the chase, as well. Season 2 cast member Roberto Diaz entered the Regular Season-ending Pinnacle Bank Championship on the bubble; he ultimately missed the cut, finished No. 27 on The 25, and failed to earn his TOUR card via the Finals. Drew Weaver struggled to find a rhythm throughout the season; he lost his card and opted to retire from professional golf, allowing him to spend more time with his wife and young son.
Season 3 promises for more of the same, with an continued expansion of behind-the-scenes access in part due to eased COVID-19 restrictions.
“My main goal is just to show each of the players, who they are,” said One Shot Away lead producer Brent Miller. “A lot of it is talking with each player and trying to find what makes them unique, and not make stuff up or put them in situations that aren’t true to them. A lot of it is talking with each player and finding what makes them unique and also what they do in their day-to-day lives that can make them relatable to everyday people.
“To play at this level, you’ve had to play for multiple years and in multiple situations. At this point in their careers, they’re all chasing the same thing. It’s not stardom, it’s not fame. It’s to prove themselves out on the PGA TOUR, or at least have the chance to do that. So I feel like that’s pretty cool. Because everybody in life wants a chance, and so I think a lot of people can relate to that, just being given a chance and trying to take advantage of it.”
"I'm motivated to do well to give our son the life that he deserves." ❤️— Korn Ferry Tour (@KornFerryTour) July 11, 2020
Family support propels @HokiesMGolf alum Drew Weaver as he chases a @PGATOUR card.
One Shot Away airs at 2:30 p.m. ET Saturday on CBS Sports. pic.twitter.com/K129RpYsfG
James Nitties can relate as well. The longtime Korn Ferry Tour pro and 2011 AdventHealth Championship winner is transitioning into a media portion of his career. The Australian serves as an analyst on PGA TOUR LIVE and was on-site analyst at Final Stage of last fall’s Korn Ferry Tour Qualifying Tournament, among other ventures.
Nitties will also host Season 3 of One Shot Away. The show’s premise hits close to home, as he finished No. 26 on The 25 in 2011. Shortly after his breakthrough August victory in Kansas City, he endured a rough patch of three consecutive missed cuts, and he failed to record a top-20 finish across the season’s final eight events.
He never made it back to the PGA TOUR.
“For me, it resonates deeply,” said Nitties of the One Shot Away premise. “I know the pressure of being that guy just out, and just how stressful it is … and then a couple years later, I made a putt on the last hole (of the Regular Season) to get into the Finals, and you know that joy of having that opportunity to get back to the TOUR. You know how big that moment is.
“I’m excited, because I’m not feeling the pressure of competing and trying to get back to the TOUR at the moment, but I still have that adrenaline of being around the game and trying to help create a fun product where you can. You can feel those nerves again.”
Korn Ferry Tour President Alex Baldwin considers herself a fan, as well. Baldwin and the Korn Ferry Tour staff have embraced One Shot Away as a way to further connect players and fans, creating emotional touchpoints that can endure throughout a life and career.
In addition to six episodes on CBS, One Shot Away will live on the Korn Ferry Tour YouTube channel, with vignettes also to be shared throughout the year on Korn Ferry Tour social media channels.
“I just can’t wait to see this all play out,” Baldwin said. “Seeing Carl Yuan cross that 900-Point threshold just a couple weeks ago, seeing the #TOURBound solidify and watching these guys continue to cross the threshold is so exciting.
“But getting to know them, learning about what makes them tick. What drives them? What motivates them? What does this mean to them? I love getting that sort of depth, and watching this all play out … it’s exciting theater. It’s just the greatest. It’s the best.”
“You’re writing their story,” added Miller, “in real time.”
PGA TOUR dreams achieved via 2020-21 Korn Ferry Tour