T.J. Auclair is a Senior Interactive Producer for PGA.com and has covered professional golf since 1998, traveling to over 60 major championships. You can follow him on Twitter, @tjauclair.
The new National Championship cut rule explained
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. -- The PGA of America has instituted a new cut rule, beginning this week, for the PGA Professional National Championship.
Until this year, the top 70 scores and ties out of the 312-player field advanced to the final two rounds following the first 36 holes.
This year, the top 90 scores and ties will advance to Tuesday's third round. After that, there will be a 54-hole cut with the traditional top 70 scores and ties advancing.
"The tournament committee made this change because we feel that we have 312 of the finest PGA playing professionals in our organization and by moving the cut to 90 and ties versus 70 and ties after Round 2, we're giving those extra 20 players or more a chance to really shine, go low the last two rounds and maybe win the tournament," PGA Vice President Derek Sprague explained. "But, more importantly, it gives them a better chance to make the top 20 spots to earn a berth and advance to the PGA Championship August."
Sprague said the new rule has been well-received by the National Championship participants.
"The players are looking forward to it," he said. "Many of them have brought their families here as well, so it gives them that little extra cushion, if you will, with those 20 extra spots. It allows them to maybe enjoy another day here on the Grand Strand."