Million-dollar march to East Lake is set

Rory McIlroy, of Northern Ireland, celebrates after winning the PGA Championship golf tournament at Valhalla Golf Club on Sunday, Aug. 10, 2014, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)
Caption
Rory McIlroy, of Northern Ireland, celebrates after winning the PGA Championship golf tournament at Valhalla Golf Club on Sunday, Aug. 10, 2014, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)

Credit: Mike Groll

Credit: Mike Groll

Rory McIlroy is the No. 1 player atop the FedEx Cup rankings as the field attempting the million-dollar march to East Lake and the Tour Championship was set on Sunday.

The top 125 golfers will compete in next week’s first event in the playoffs, the Barclays in New Jersey. The top 100 golfers in the rankings will advance to the Deutsche Bank Championship to be played Aug. 29-Sept. 1 in Massachusetts. The top 70 will advance to the BMW Championship in Colorado.

After the BMW, the top 30 in the rankings, a group that currently includes former Georgia and defending Masters champ Bubba Watson, will head to our backyard Sept. 11-14. The points will then be reset to give every player a chance to win.

Each tournament carries an $8 million purse. The Tour Championship winner will receive $1.44 million.

McIlroy’s hot streak of winning his past three tournaments, including the British Open and PGA Championship, is one of the reasons that ticket sales for the Tour Championship are on pace with last year’s, according to Tom Clark, the tournament’s executive director.

“We have noticed that there is an awful lot of excitement for Rory McIlroy,” he said.

The Tour Championship hopes to average 25,000 tickets sold per day from Wednesday-Sunday. Last year’s tournament reached a sell-out with walk-up sales. Tickets are available at www.pgatour.com/ttc. Teens and children less than 18 years old are free when accompanied by an adult who has a ticket.

The field has the potential for fun.

Henrik Stenson, last year’s FedEx Cup champ, enters at No. 70 in the rankings.

There are almost as many players with local ties in the top 125 as there are allowed clubs in a bag.

In addition to Watson, No. 3 in the standings, among the locals are former Georgia Tech standout Matt Kuchar (No. 4), former Georgia and Augusta State standout Patrick Reed (No. 9) along with former Bulldogs Chris Kirk (No. 10). Brendon Todd (No. 12) and Harris English (No. 17).

Augusta native Charles Howell III is at No. 33 with a good chance of making it to East Lake. Another former Bulldog, Russell Henley, is at No. 50 with some work to do to make it to Atlanta. Acworth’s Jason Bohn has had a nice bounce-back year with three top-10 finishes and is No. 59.

Former Georgia Tech standout Cameron Tringale is at No. 61, followed by another Bulldog, Erik Compton, at No. 65. Two Yellow Jackets, Stewart Cink (No. 109) and Bryce Molder (No. 122) squeaked into playoffs.

About the Author

ajc.com

Editors' Picks