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PGA Tour to see major changes, possibly by 2026

PGA Tour University announces PGA Tour pathways for college golfers

The PGA Tour announced a few minor tweaks last week for next season’s signature events but that is the low-hanging fruit.

Change is coming.

Reduced fields? Relegation? Korn Ferry Tour majors? Fewer exempt players? All this and more are being discussed by the 16-member Tour’s Player Advisory Council and could be implemented as soon as the 2026 season. The PGA Tour declined to comment for this story other than to say, “the PAC and player directors are actively involved in all facets regarding the future of the PGA Tour,” and some PAC members declined too, but not all of them.

“For the first time in a while I was excited after our last PAC meeting (in Fort Worth during the Charles Schwab Challenge),” said veteran pro Kevin Streelman. “We started talking and spitballing ideas about what things could look like. There were some ideas that seemed very good and would bring some consistency and true competitiveness to the top players in the world and still give a soft landing and a hopeful resurgence and opportunity if you fall off.

“There’s this super tour up here that everyone wants to be on, the big tournaments. But then you still want to be able to play and support your family and some hope of getting back. There were some cool ideas of relegation and promotion going both ways.”

Lanto Griffin said there’s support among the PAC for reducing tournament sizes to 120 players across the board regardless of regular or signature event. To do so, they would reduce the number of players that keep exempt status from 125 – the number 100 has been bandied around as a better figure although Rory McIlroy has suggested going even lower – and staggering down to the low figure over the course of several years.

“I think it’d be gradual, so that’s 125 to 120, 120 to 115 to slowly push lower and have less Q-School and Korn Ferry graduates,” Griffin said.

He said that they need to shape the schedule so the best players continue to play against each other as much as possible but also allow all exempt players to have a fair shake. He noted that Q-School and Korn Ferry Tour graduates are at a distinct disadvantage under the current system.

“They’re playing on the B-tour this year,” he said. “In an ideal world, the PGA Tour should be 20-22 tournaments from January to August. I know that’s not every week. Then have some tournaments go to the Korn Ferry Tour just throwing random names – (Cognizant), a Valero, a Dominican, those are Korn…

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