Woods claims inaugural prize of $8 million, followed by Phil Mickelson in program that rewards positive interest in Tour
Despite rehabbing injuries from a horrific car crash in February and playing in an un-official tournament, Tiger Woods still won the PGA Tour's Player Impact Program for 2021.
The program, in its inaugural year, rewards players who generate the most positive interest in the Tour over the course of the calendar year. This year's purse was $40 million.
The top 10:
1. Tiger Woods ($8 million)
2. Phil Mickelson ($6 million)
3. Rory McIlroy ($3.5 million)
4. Jordan Spieth ($3.5 million)
5. Bryson DeChambeau ($3.5 million)
6. Justin Thomas ($3.5 million)
7. Dustin Johnson ($3 million)
8. Brooks Koepka ($3 million)
9. Jon Rahm ($3 million)
10. Bubba Watson ($3 million)
The program uses five metrics to calculate its rankings. The metrics are internet searches, earned media (number of unique news articles that include a player’s name), social media score (a player’s reach, conversation and engagement metrics), TV sponsor exposure (time that a player’s sponsor logos appear on screen during Saturday and Sunday PGA Tour telecasts) and awareness (a general awareness score among broad U.S. population).
The graphic below shows the category ranks for the top-10 finishers.
The final PIP standings were presented to the board of the PGA Tour at a meeting Tuesday night in Winter Park, Fla.
As reported by Morning Read's Bob Harig, a player and Tour must mutually agree upon the player performing one service for the Tour and attending one designated tournament in order to qualify for payment.
It's uncertain what service and tournament Woods agreed upon. Meanwhile, Mickelson claimed in a late December tweet that he won the PIP and that the year-opening Sentry Tournament of Champions served as his designated tournament.
The PGA Tour has announced that the bonus pool for 2022 will increase to $50 million.
On Feb. 23, 2021, Woods, 46, suffered multiple injuries in a one-vehicle crash and spent most of the year rehabbing. In December, Woods and his son Charlie played in the 36-hole PNC Championship.