I worked with SI’s statistical guru, David Sabino, to develop a mathematical formula to determine the top 10 PGA Tour players. The rankings incorporate 15 different statistical categories, including wins, top 10s, cuts made, earnings, total driving, greens in regulation, putting average, save percentage, eagles and birdies. Some are weighted to grant them additional influence, so it’s more reflective of overall play than simply dollars earned.
Players lose ground if they take a week off, so the list won’t go stagnant with the same old names sitting at the top. This week’s scores ranged from 229 for No. 1 to 114 for No. 10, and went all the way down to single digits for the approximately 365 players ranked each week.
1. Tiger Woods. Tiger had the Open right where he wanted it but couldn’t bash down the door. Did he know something the rest of us didn’t when he teed off? Wife Elin gave birth to a daughter the next day. That’s how to be a loser and a winner at the same time. Congrats to all. (Last Week: 1)
2. Phil Mickelson. Phil made a hell of a run of it despite obvious discomfort in his taped-up wrist. He vowed to honor a commitment to tee it up this week in Connecticut, but in the end his doctor advised at least two weeks with no golf. Will it be a lost season for Phil? (Last Week: 2)
3. Vijay Singh. Singh is becoming golf’s little brother. He’s always hanging around in the background, but he’s not quite strong enough to play with the big boys these days. His personal annuity, the Buick Open, approaches. (Last Week: 3)
4. Zach Johnson. Oakmont really was a great course for Johnson, on paper. On grass, it ate him alive, sending the Masters champ home after two days of missed fairways and botched putts. (Last Week: 4)
5. Rory Sabbatini. Sabbatini tied for 51st at Oakmont. It would have been interesting to see him take on that course when he was on his hot streak in May. Now, he’ll have to get his groove back for the second half. (Last Week: 5)
6. Adam Scott. The Open was a real disappointment for Scott, who came in playing as well as anyone and absolutely exploded on Friday, shooting an 84 and missing the cut by a mile. He left without speaking to the media. The only way it could have been worse for him was if Aaron Baddeley won. (Last Week: 7)
7. Charles Howell. Howell worked it out enough last week to make the cut, which makes sense because solid ballstriking like his is half the battle at an Open, where no one’s going to make too many putts on those crazy-fast greens. (Last Week: 6)
8. Jim Furyk. Furyk’s runner-up finish bolts him into the top 10, the only one present without a win. Would have made a nice story for him to take it. It was an uncharacteristic foul-up at 17 that did him in. (Last Week: 8)
9. K.J. Choi. Choi was in the mix early at Oakmont, but he couldn’t stand up to the unrelenting nature of the set up. He eventually missed the cut. (Last Week: Not ranked)