What tour pros really think about Jon Rahm

What tour pros really think about Jon Rahm

Welcome to The Undercover Pro Newsletter, where we grant anonymity to people in golf who’ve got something to say. This kickoff installment comes from a current PGA Tour player interviewed by Senior Writer Joel Beall.

I’m not a star—no major wins or magazine covers for me—but I am ranked inside the top 100 players in the world. The past couple of months I’ve talked to a ton of fellow rank-and-file about one of our tour’s biggest stars who left for LIV Golf: Jon Rahm.

PGA Tour players have never really had personal issues with any of the guys who left (except for the ones who, you know, tried to sue the tour out of existence). Plus, the PGA Tour normalized doing business with LIV’s financial backer, Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, when it agreed to the framework agreement last summer. From afar, you might think Rahm’s defection to LIV was better received by his peers than past jumpers. The truth is, not really. The reason most guys are pissed has to do with our selfishness. Tour pros are like most fans in that we want this drama to end. A lot of us think Rahm’s departure will prolong this schism, and now that the tour has its private-equity investment in place with Strategic Sports Group, both sides feel like they have the upper hand. Having all this drag into another summer is something we didn’t want, and if it continues, Rahm, rightfully or not, will receive blame.

Manuel Velasquez

Rahm broke an unwritten code. Both sides had a hands-off approach to recruiting during the period when negotiations were being banged out and—maybe this is me being naive—it seemed like everyone understood that. It’s like Jon (or Jon’s team) thought they were above the detente. As the best player in the world, Jon could maybe claim he shouldn’t be lumped in with us. But, man, if there was one upshot from the past half year, it was this feeling of tour players coming together for a common cause. When a guy breaks from the pack to

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