Brilliant or Gimmicky? YouTube Golfers Have a Shot at PGA Tour Event
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Brilliant or Gimmicky? YouTube Golfers Have a Shot at PGA Tour Event

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Brilliant or Gimmicky? YouTube Golfers Have a Shot at PGA Tour Event

This sentence would have been unfathomable a few years ago: YouTube golfers are competing for the right to play in a PGA Tour event. 

The Myrtle Beach Classic, taking place May 9-12 in South Carolina, is holding a 16-man qualifier featuring notable YouTube content creators. The low finisher will get a spot in the tournament, which is an opposite-field event being held the same week as the Wells Fargo Championship (the Wells Fargo is a signature event, so all the best players will be in Charlotte). 

The 18-hole qualifier, hosted by Golf Tourism Solutions and Visit Myrtle Beach, will be on March 4 at TPC Myrtle Beach with a 90-minute video of the shootout being released April 23. Some of the participants will be releasing their own individual content from the event, as you would expect. 

No spectators or media will be allowed at the event—the results will be kept under wraps until the video comes out in April.

Is this a brilliant marketing strategy by a first-year PGA Tour event with nothing to lose? Or is this a gimmicky ploy to gain attention while taking a potential spot away from a better player? 

Let’s take a look. 

Who is Playing?

Many of the names on this list are legit players with extensive competitive golf experience. Some are not as battle-tested—but everyone meets PGA Tour regulations for sponsor exemptions, meaning they each have a USGA handicap of 0.0 or better. 

Not all of the players in the qualifier are YouTube golfers. Some are regularly featured in YouTube videos on other channels but don’t have their own content. And some are local standouts who aren’t on YouTube at all. 

  • Matt Atkins: Has made 25 PGA Tour starts and won on the Korn Ferry Tour in 2017. 
  • George Bryan IV: Half of Bryan Bros. Golf and a former All-American at South Carolina. 
  • Jay Card III: Has made 39 starts on the Korn Ferry Tour.
  • Morgan Deneen: Assistant club pro at Dunes Golf and Beach Club. 
  • Peter Finch: A combined 1.25 million subscribers/followers on YouTube, Instagram, TikTok and X. 
  • Grant Horvat: Formerly of Good Good, has a combined 1.35 million subscribers/followers
  • Luke Kwon: Member of Good Good, has made over 50 starts in PGA Tour-sanctioned events. 
  • Micah Morris: Formerly of Good Good, has more than 1 million subscribers/followers
  • Turk Pettitt: Won 2021 NCAA Championship while at Clemson. 
  • Dan Rapaport: Member of the Fore Play podcast and Barstool Sports. 
  • Scott Stevens: Made 21 Korn Ferry Tour starts last year. 
  • Nick Stubbe: Known as Fat Perez from Bob Does Sports, has more than 1 million subscribers/followers.
  • Tyler Watts: High school sophomore from Alabama who won the Jones Cup Junior Invitational. 
  • Jamie Wilson: Former All-SEC golfer from University of South Carolina. 
  • Mason Nut or Cole Lantz: BustaJack duo will play each other to see who gets the spot in the qualifier. 

Who will win? Probably Atkins, Stevens or one of the other golfers with a lot of Korn Ferry Tour experience, but you never know what can happen.

What is the Point of This?

I think this is a phenomenal idea. 

Let’s face it, very few of us were going to watch the Myrtle Beach Classic. The field is going to be pretty rough. All of our attention will be on the Wells Fargo that week. 

This spot is for an unrestricted sponsor exemption. Tournaments generally use these on players they think will draw the most fans or generate higher levels of support. It’s the same way guys like Steph Curry, Tony Romo and Jake Owen got invited to pro events. 

It’s good for the tournament to get exposure. That is part of the entertainment product—and the PGA Tour could use all the help it can get in this area. 

A lot of people make the argument that this could take away a spot from a more deserving player. There is merit to that at some level—maybe you believe sponsor exemptions shouldn’t exist at all—but this particular spot would only be going to someone who didn’t earn their way into the tournament. 

Also, the first alternate for this event is probably going to be a 50-year-old former tour winner we haven’t heard of in over a decade. Opposite field events have really struggled to be filled out in recent years. 

At a time when YouTube golf has taken off and is arguably more popular than professional golf depending on how you want to measure that, why wouldn’t a lower-tier PGA Tour event take a chance on something like this? 

Imagine if Fat Perez wins? The hullabaloo around that would be insane. 

The worst-case scenario is that a lesser-known player wins and we still get a ton of interesting content from the qualifier. 

I could definitely see this concept being copied by other events. It’s a little surprising someone hasn’t already done this. 

Hey, we are talking about the Myrtle Beach Classic. That is the entire point. 

For You

For You

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Sean Fairholm

Sean Fairholm

Sean Fairholm

Sean is a longtime golf journalist and underachieving 8 handicap who enjoys the game in all forms. If he didn't have an official career writing about golf, Sean would spend most of his free time writing about it anyway. When he isn't playing golf, you can find Sean watching his beloved Florida Panthers hockey team, traveling to a national park or listening to music on his record player. He lives in Nashville with his wife and dog (of course the dog's name is Hogan).

Sean Fairholm

Sean Fairholm

Sean Fairholm

Sean Fairholm

Sean Fairholm

Sean Fairholm





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      What happened?

      1 month ago

      I’ll be as nice as possible and say these guys have a 0.000000000000% chance of qualifying.

      Reply

      Kyle

      2 months ago

      It’s a marketing play by their manager. There are a few real players in the qualifying field that have a good chance, Jay Card, Scott Stevens, Matt Atkinson Turk, and Jamie. George Bryan and Luke Kwon are the only YouTube guys who have a solid chance.

      These YouTube influencers have the same manager, he was hired by Play Myrtle Beach to promote the courses. It’s all a marketing play.

      Notice that the Good Good guys aren’t involved because they aren’t represented by that particular manager

      Reply

      Tj

      2 months ago

      Wait till you here what group Luke Kwon is directly associated with

      Reply

      Rob Hunt

      5 days ago

      I’m a big fan of Micah Morris, he finished dead last at the PGA Canada event he entered. It shows the talent level of full time golfers. BUT he could give this qualifier a scare.

      Reply

      PHDrunkards

      2 months ago

      It was bound to happen, sooner or later.
      They had to do this to showcase how good they really are, or, how difficult the game really is under immense amount of performance pressure, when they can’t do mulligans and best-ball games like they do on their channels, farting around having a laugh.
      This will either make or break some of them…… as some viewers will be highly critical of them doing it, and others will be supportive, but dependant on their performances, perceptions might change. It’s not about just having a pretty swing, or being able to play slugging back a 6 pack every 3 holes or whatever.
      Either way for us viewers we’ll also learn a lot.
      But it was going to happen, one way or the other.

      Reply

      Mike

      2 months ago

      Hey, I wonder what they’ll do next, invite the best LPGA player in the world to play in men’s event? Where’s the outcry that you’re “Taking a spot from a PGA player”?

      Reply

      PHDrunkards

      2 months ago

      No, because a whole bunch of the great players left to go to LIV
      lol
      So there’s actually room now

      Reply

      Alex

      2 months ago

      Kind of reminds me when Golf Channel had that show ‘Big Break’- alums include PGA tour event winners Tony Finau, Matt Every, two gloves Gainey, and the Bryan bros (I think Wes won an event ).Winner would get into a PGA Tour or KFT event (women got into an LPGA or Epsom Tour event. Seems like the present day version without the various skills challenge/elimination rounds

      Reply

      Chris

      2 months ago

      I’ve watched a lot of golf on TV and I think it would be more interesting watching these hopefuls take a shot at a tour event. No mulligans, no preferred lies no gimmies, just real true golf and a legitimate score.

      Reply

      Daddyawn

      2 months ago

      This definitely warrants a peek. I’ll be watching as I’m sure many others will be too.

      Reply

      abw3

      2 months ago

      I enjoy YouTube golf! I really like the idea and would love to see any of the listed YouTubers win a chance to compete in a PGA Tour event. Each of them have demonstrated–on camera!–that they can play some high quality golf. While I don’t think any of them would win a PGA tour event (yet), I do think they can all compete and not completely embarrass themselves or their “brand.” Personally, I like George Bryan’s chances a lot. He has repeatedly shown he can compete with the likes of Matt Atkins and Cardboard Stevens (and John Rahm!) on his channel and has already made the cut at a PGA tour event. Grant Horvat is also a very talented player with a legitimate shot at winning a spot. And let’s not forget Peter Finch. He strikes the ball well enough to be a serious contender. Luke Kwon and FP (Stubbe) consistently throw darts, Micah Morris and Mason Nutt can mash the ball, Dan Rappaport is steady, and Cole Lantz is sneaky good. As a fan, I’m just looking forward to some high quality, entertaining golf!

      Reply

      TheJones

      2 months ago

      Year of The Beast Deux!!

      Reply

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