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‘Noles in the Pros: FSU men’s golf 2019 season

or, why you should watch this week’s alternate field event in Reno

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PGA: The Open Championship - Final Round Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports

The season’s fourth and final major just wrapped up in Northern Ireland, and it could be a bad sign that only one Florida State golfer competed, even if that golfer is No. 1 in the world and just became the fourth ever golfer to finish in the top-4 of every major in a single year. Brooks Koepka is at the top of the game. But fear not, there are a number of other FSU golfers representing out on tour.

With only two weeks left in the regular season on the PGA Tour, here is how they’ve fared.

PGA Tour

Brooks Koepka

The current season began last October, and Brooks got on the board early with a win at the CJ Cup in the 3rd event of the wrap-around schedule. Then, in May, he successfully defended his title at the PGA Championship. That’s four majors and six total wins for Koepka. The rest of FSU golfers combined can only match his four majors. The only golfer really in contention with him for the title of greatest ‘Nole ever is Hubert Green who won 19 titles, including two major championships.

Daniel Berger

Life on tour ain’t easy. A couple of years ago, Berger was one of the top young stars. Now, after dealing with a wrist injury, he’s fighting to keep his tour status. You have to finish in the top-125 to retain full status on tour, and Berger is currently No. 126 in the FedEx Cup standings. His only top-10 on the year was a T-2 at the Puerto Rico Open. That’s why he’s playing in this week’s alternative field event in Reno. With two weeks left, he needs a good finish.

Jonas Blixt

Blixt is not only joining Berger in Reno this week, but he’s also struggling to retain his status, currently checking in at 117 in the FedEx Cup. A fifth place finish at the Charles Schwab Challenge is the highlight of his season, to go along with three other top-25s.

Hank Lebioda

Another ‘Nole on tour, another ‘Nole struggling to stay there. The rookie is currently No. 141 in the FedEx Cup. He’s done a great job making cuts (14-21), but hasn’t been able to do much on the weekends. He finished 5th in the team event in New Orleans with Curtis Luck. Even if he doesn’t sneak into the top-125, he absolutely needs to finish in the top-150. This will give him conditional status on the PGA Tour (getting him in to maybe 12-15 events) and full status on the Korn Ferry Tour (re: the former Tour).

Of course, trio of Berger-Blixt-Lebioda are all going to qualify for the Korn Ferry Tour Finals if they don’t get into the top-125, and in those three events they’ll have the opportunity to be among 25 players who earn their PGA Tour status.

George McNeill

The 43-year-old McNeill has been using his status as a past winner to play several events each year. This season that included a T-7 at the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship which means he is currently 209th in the FedEx Cup. If he can get into the top-200 then he’ll also qualify for the Korn Ferry Tour Finals, where he can earn his way back onto the PGA Tour full time. Otherwise, he hasn’t shown much interest in playing on the lower tours, and is likely just biding his time until the PGA Tour Champions.

PGA Tour Champions

Jeff Sluman

Sluman is 61, and hasn’t won in five years, but he’s still printing money on the PGA Tour Champions. He’s had four top-25s in 14 events, with a high of T-6.

Korn Ferry Tour

Chase Seiffert

Say hello to your newest PGA Tour ‘Nole. After missing out on the Tour by one stroke in last year’s Korn Ferry Tour Finals, he kept his focus and grinded out five top-10s in 18 events, and is currently 12th on the points list (the top-25 advance) with three regular season events left. He’s been a professional since 2013, and this will be his first crack at the big time. Congrats.

Jack Maguire

Maguire got off to a great start with a top-25 in the season’s opening event. Then he missed nine straight cuts. He’s been better since then but is still No. 111 in the points standing, and needs to finish in the top-75 to retain full status. Unfortunately, he withdrew from this week’s event and his future is uncertain.

Other Tours

Cristobal Del Solar

Koepka isn’t the only ‘Nole to win an event this year. Del Solar won the Puerto Plata Open on the PGA Tour Latinoamerica, for his 2nd win of his young career. He’s currently 7th on the points list and needs to finish top-5 to advance to the Korn Ferry Tour. He’s also played two events on the PGA Tour Canada, but missed both cuts.

Josh Lee

Lee has joined Del Solar in Latin America and is currently 53rd on the points list.

Rowin Caron

Caron has played two events on the PGA Tour Latinoamerica and is 69th on the points list. He’s also played twice on the Challenge Tour (the European version of the Korn Ferry Tour) and once on the European Tour, but missed all three cuts.

Harry Ellis

Harry Ellis has made a cut on the Challenge Tour, but that’s about it.