The big money in golf still isn’t enough to turn Tom Hogg around

HONOLULU (AP) — Tom Hough felt it was an easy decision to take the 5,000-mile detour between Maui and Honolulu so he could watch his alma mater, TCU, play for Football National Championship against Georgia. It didn’t end well for him or the horned frogs.

Another easy decision for him was to book the flight.

He left Maui after tying for third place in the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Kapalua which paid him $840,000. And the coach still flew.

“I always fly the trainer. That’s normal for me,” said Haughey, who said he had a 25A seat on the way back to Hawaii.

At least it was an exit row.

Hoge, a North Dakota native, felt no reason to splurge on anything, except perhaps the occasional table of craps. He loosens it up at the urging of his wife, Kelly, whom he jokingly refers to as “the warden” when it comes to his craps habit.

“I always get an exit row and get promoted half the time,” Haughey said. “I’m trying to hold on to some of this money we make, right?”

It’s not just about money. Hoge turned down an offer last year to join the Saudi-backed LIV Golf, an offer put in eight figures by the Fire Pit Collective.

he She won the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am last year For his first win on the PGA Tour. He’s not a Player Impact participant, and soon he’ll be playing the golf courses he loves best than the ones he’s attached to his $20 million purse.

Hoge, who finished 10th in his first tournament, made just over $5.3 million last year with his FedEx Cup bonus. His actual career earnings are $13.2 million.

He’s in his ninth year on the PGA Tour, and has achieved the FedEx Cup after the fourth season out of the past eight years. Only once did Hoge fail to make it through the Korn Ferry Tour Finals, and that year he participated in enough events to make it a success.

“I’ve always taken the approach of when my career is over — for me, it’s always trying to make it next year, next year — whenever I’m done, whatever I want to do next isn’t based on money. I’ll have the freedom to decide.”

That may not be anytime soon.

Hoge already has three top 10 players this year, including Kapalua, a FedEx Cup No. 16 finisher. He is ranked 30th in the world rankings, and will return to the Masters in April.

There was one time he got a little crazy with his money.

“It’s been a while,” Haughey said. “I bought a fancy car when I was younger. I was lucky I didn’t make a lot of money in my career at the time. I realized it didn’t do much for me.”

The Tour has a relationship with BMW, so he bought the X5 M. This was after the 2018 season in which he crossed the million-dollar mark for the first time.

And now?

“I still have it,” he said. “It gets the job done.”

As for his love of craps, this is still a work in progress.

He said, “I’m trying to get rid of that.” “It doesn’t pay the bills.”

Sitting stars

The LPGA Tour opens a new season in Florida with the Tournament of Champions. Now if only he could find the heroes.

The course at Lake Nona only has three top 10 women’s world rankings, which could be a product of a stop-and-go start to the 2023 season. After this week, the LPGA Tour takes a full month off before the first Asian swing begins at Honda LPGA Thailand.

Lydia Ko, LPGA Player of the Year and world number one, ended 2022 with marriage. Jin Young Koo of South Korea was originally in the field but withdrew.

Grand champion Mingye Lee (US Women’s Open) and NJ Chun (Women’s Professional Golfers’ Association) will also not attend. Lee is from Australia and will be flying to and from Florida to attend one event.

Also missing from the top 10 was Lexi Thompson, with good reason — she didn’t win last year.

Among those playing is Japan’s Nasa Hatooka, who recently signed an endorsement deal with Hilton Grand Vacations. She joins a group of ambassadors that includes LeAnn Rimes.

Danielle Kang is the defending champion.

Asian hopes

LIV Golf has poured $300 million into the Asian Tour, and there are no fewer than seven tournaments this year offering $1 million or more in prize money.

The International Series offers $2 million or more.

The boost goes back to whoever scores in the final stage of qualifying this week in Thailand.

Back-to-back Bay Hill winner Matt Avery is among those who make it to the final stage. So is Sangmoon Bae, a two-time PGA Tour winner whose career was slowed by the mandatory military service he faced immediately after the 2015 Presidents’ Cup.

Also playing is a household name without any status – Dru Love, son of Davis Love III.

They will be joined by Steve Mario and Alvaro Quiros at Lakeview Golf & Resort. The top 35 players after the 90-hole event, which starts on Wednesday, get cards for the Asian Tour.

Scott schedule

By the time Adam Scott was getting rid of Rust, it was time to take a month off.

Scott came to Kapalua and the Sony Open from his native Australia, where he has not been since after the 2019 Presidents Cup at Royal Melbourne due to travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

With a schedule filled with $20 million worth of high-profile events, he wants time off when he can get it. So he left Oahu for Down Under and wouldn’t return until Genesis Calling on the Riviera.

Why not go back to the WM Phoenix Open, which is also a high profile event? It turns out that’s the thing he’s allowed to skip to earn the $2 million Player Impact bonus (finishing 17th).

“Well, I don’t have a good reason for you,” said Scott. “The awkward reason is because I actually thought she went Phoenix, Pebble, L.A. So I didn’t think about it from the start.”

Instead, the schedule goes to Pebble Beach, Phoenix, and then Los Angeles.

More than just a tight schedule, this is Scott’s first time traveling with his wife and three children. He took the kids out of school and hired a tutor for them to do the homeschooling. How is it?

“I haven’t heard any complaints,” he said, “so it should be fine.”


American Ryder Cup captain Zack Johnson has announced that Davis Love III will be one of his assistants in September in Italy. This will be the fourth time that Love has acted as an assistant. He also was captain twice. … The British Masters have rotated host duties for a number of players, such as Lee Westwood and Danny Willett over the years. Now, six-time Masters Champion Nick Faldo is set to host long-term Betfred British Masters. It is played at The Belfry. … Cousin O’Connor, an international law firm based in Philadelphia, is the latest firm to offer a sponsorship deal for players on the PGA Tour and LPGA Tour. She is sponsoring Brendon Todd and Ally Ewing for the next two years. Both will wear the company’s logo on the top of their shirts. … Nelly Korda joined the Swoosh family by signing a clothing deal with Nike. … the Latin American Amateur Championship returns next year to Panama at the Santa Maria Golf Club. It was held in 2017 at the Panama Golf Club.

case of the week

Minjee Lee, Jin Young Ko, Brooke Henderson and Nasa Hataoka are the only LPGA Tour players to finish in the top 10 each year since 2018.

last word

“If I were 18, 19, 20, if I said I had only won four times and hadn’t won a major in 41, I wouldn’t agree with you. But I can honestly say I feel I have the best golf ahead of me.” – Aaron Baddeley, who at age 18 beat Greg Norman and Colin Montgomery to win the 1999 Australian Open as an amateur.


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