PALM BEACH GARDENS, FLORIDA | It could have passed for the Puerto Rico Open. Or maybe a souped-up Web.com Tour event.
We’re not talking about the Honda Classic, which has seen the quality of its field fall into a Bear Trap because of a revamped PGA Tour schedule. We’re talking about the qualifier to get into the Honda Classic, the one-day Monday shootout where more than 150 players signed up and 130 started with four exemptions into the tournament on the line.
These qualifiers have long been a fixture in the professional game and generally garner little more than a footnote in the media guide. To use a March Madness comparison, they are akin to the play-in games that start college basketball’s grand tournament. The only difference is that Monday qualifiers aren’t shown on TV, the odds of advancing through to the tournament are minuscule and even those who qualify aren’t exactly guaranteed anything. This season on the PGA Tour only 14 of the 39 qualifiers have made the cut in the tournament. And for those wondering, only three players since 1986 – including Kenny Knox at the Honda Classic 33 years ago – have won the tournament after qualifying on Monday.
Despite these long odds, Monday qualifiers have only grown in intensity over the years. The remarkable depth on the PGA and Web.com tours has squeezed notable names out of having secure status, forcing many to try their luck against those right out of college. According to the popular Twitter account Monday Q Info, th...
Get access to this article and all the quality, in-depth journalism of Global Golf Post Plus.
or Log In