Is the Road to the PGA Tour TOO difficult?

Blade Man

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It should be hard to make it to the top of any sport. Even as tough as it is to make it there are still players we never see. That’s all sports.
 

JB

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Number of Kids/High School players flowing down to NFL/NBA/MLB, compared to much smaller size of kids/high school players in golf filtering down to PGA.
Still not sure I understand.
Yes more are playing those sports (they are free) than there are others (although part of that is the organized vs non aspect)

There are less PGA Tour professionals in a given year as there are 1 division in the NFL.

The qualifier to be the hardest road would of course be the availbility at the top, not what is available in high school.
 

BuckNasty

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Still not sure I understand.
Yes more are playing those sports (they are free) than there are others (although part of that is the organized vs non aspect)

There are less PGA Tour professionals in a given year as there are 1 division in the NFL.

The qualifier to be the hardest road would of course be the availbility at the top, not what is available in high school.
the hardest road should be the number of folks you are competing against for those spots at the top, not just the sport that has the least number of pro spots. That is what the percentages I listed provided, a way to compare sport to sport even though the number of players playing each sport is different.
 

DataDude

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No of course not. There are several ways to do it which is awesome in my opinion. The fact remains that there are only 180ish of the spots available. That's just an incredible mountain to climb no matter how many ways you can create to qualify for those 180 spots.
 

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the hardest road should be the number of folks are you competing against for those spots at the top, not just the sport that has the least number of pro spots. That is what the percentages I listed provided, a way to compare sport to sport even though the number of players playing each sport is different.
I strongly disagree with this.
The sheer amount of no chance in hell participants in those other sports is astronomical.
 

MattyD-MPLS

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It is very hard to get to the tour because of 175 guys, 125 get their cards and the next 25 get conditional status. If they cut that to 100 each year it would open up an opportunity to move up.
 

BuckNasty

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I strongly disagree with this.
The sheer amount of no chance in hell participants in those other sports is astronomical.
It is all relative to where you say the road begins. If the road begins at college then yes those numbers will be a bit different.
 

dacatalyst41

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If we say the road starts in high school, the % that make it is this:

PGA - 0.17%
NFL - 0.16%
MLB - 0.18%
NBA - 0.08%

looks like most sports compare pretty well with each other in terms of difficulty ascending from high school to pro, with the exception of NBA that appears to have a much tougher road based on the numbers game.
I'd say those percentages don't tell the full story. So while the values are close, they're only making the case for qualifying as a professional the highest level. The path to reach that point is where I think the disparity lies.
 

BuckNasty

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I'd say those percentages don't tell the full story. So while the values are close, they're only making the case for qualifying as a professional the highest level. The path to reach that point is where I think the disparity lies.
Which part of the path would you say is where the disparity lies?
 

dacatalyst41

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Which part of the path would you say is where the disparity lies?
Most collegiate athletes are on a scholarship within a program and that's essentially the same across the board. When college golfers graduate, the most elite don't get "drafted" into the PGA, right? So that's when the real grind begins. NBA Players get drafted. NFL Players get drafted. They're paid as they continue through their development.
 

BuckNasty

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Most collegiate athletes are on a scholarship within a program and that's essentially the same across the board. When college golfers graduate, the most elite don't get "drafted" into the PGA, right? So that's when the real grind begins. NBA Players get drafted. NFL Players get drafted. They're paid as they continue through their development.
I think the grind between baseball and golf is probably the closest matchup from a path perspective, as you need to excel in development leagues after college before you get the shot at the big show.

It's hard to compare grinds in each sport though. Just because a player is drafted doesn't mean they don't have to grind it out to make the team or find a way to make a living playing that sport (with the exception of 1st round picks who get a decent amount of money upfront).
 

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I still say making the NBA is the hardest road of any sport. Only 450 NBA players for a game that is cheap to play and has worldwide appeal. The talent pool for basketball is so much larger than golf, and I think a big part of that is the golf requires quite a bit of capital to play, so that already limits your competition to the folks that have the means to do so.
 
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BuckNasty

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Most collegiate athletes are on a scholarship within a program and that's essentially the same across the board. When college golfers graduate, the most elite don't get "drafted" into the PGA, right? So that's when the real grind begins. NBA Players get drafted. NFL Players get drafted. They're paid as they continue through their development.
From your perspective, are you saying the grind is mostly related to the fact that the golfers don’t get paid and may be broke during this development process? Can’t the same be said about the first 20-22 years of a majority of NBA/NFL players lives based on racial breakdown of each league and the racial wealth gap in our country (I’m not trying to get political, just stating a fact).
 

dacatalyst41

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I think the grind between baseball and golf is probably the closest matchup from a path perspective, as you need to excel in development leagues after college before you get the shot at the big show.

It's hard to compare grinds in each sport though. Just because a player is drafted doesn't mean they don't have to grind it out to make the team or find a way to make a living playing that sport (with the exception of 1st round picks who get a decent amount of money upfront).
I'd agree that the MLB is probably the closest, but I think the added financial burden is key. Aspiring professional golfers carry the pressure of performance and they pay their own tab. It's literally Pay to Play in their case.

From your perspective, are you saying the grind is mostly related to the fact that the golfers don’t get paid and may be broke during this development process? Can’t the same be said about the first 20-22 years of a majority of NBA/NFL players lives based on racial breakdown of each league and the racial wealth gap in our country (I’m not trying to get political, just stating a fact).
The argument could be made, but I'm making the point that compared to it's contemporaries, PGA pursuit is distinct in that you're not really making money while you are trying to get your PGA card. You're actually losing money. As for the NBA, G-league players make a minimum of $35k.
 

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I do. And I disagree with most of these cross-sport comparisons, because in just about all of those, when you're done adding to the competitive side of the product, you're done. You're put in the booth or somewhere else they can still profit off you while keeping the competition elite. It's way easier to hang on in golf based on past success than in those other sports.

Make it harder to stay on tour, not to get there. That's how you actually get the best of the best out there.
 

BuckNasty

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The argument could be made, but I'm making the point that compared to it's contemporaries, PGA pursuit is distinct in that you're not really making money while you are trying to get your PGA card. You're actually losing money. As for the NBA, G-league players make a minimum of $35k.
I guess then the only real debate is on who has it harder/is grinding more during that stage of life, a the young adult in the G-League making 35k who on average most likely came from a poverty-type situation, or the young adult trying to make it onto/through the Korn Ferry Tour who on average most likely came from a upper middle-class/upper-class situation. Tough to really make a cal in either direction.
 

Bowtiepower00

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Another angle, quite a few solid HS/College golfers are able to carve out a career as a golf pro in some capacity, working for manufacturers, local clubs, and other avenues as a teaching pro or equipment pro. May not be PGA tour but still a way for a solid golfer to make a living doing what they love.
 

GolfTravelDude

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Natural talent is rewarded quickly via all other sports.....Top NCAA players in Baseball, Basketball, Hockey, Football get huge contracts before they ever step on a court as a pro....That doesn't happen with Golfers. The NCAA Individual Champion might get a contract for clubs/balls and etc....But they have to qualify to play on the PGA Tour...
 

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