McIlroy the big winner on our social media board
By John Kim, PGA.com Coordinating Producer
KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. -- The 94th PGA Championship ended with the thrills, the drama and the excitement that we all hoped it would when the week began. Watching the world's best players take on the world's toughest golf course under major championship conditions meant there would be plenty of social media chatter over the past week -- and most likely peaking on Sunday.
Once again, the PGA.com community -- encompassing PGA.com commenters, our Facebook nation, our Twitter followers and those connecting on Instagram, Viddy and Pinterest came through -- in a big way.
On a day that started very early -- with some golfers having to play as many as 28 holes -- the world woke up to a wall of weather conditions, traffic updates and, soon, scoreboard results. We kept track of everything you were talking about and created our own "scoreboard" of social media topics you were discussing. Here's how the final day played out.
10. Adam Scott
So much hope early in the week for the dashing Aussie, especially following his disappointment at the Open Championship. But after a hot start through the first three rounds, Scott faded to a 1-over 73 on the final day. Fewer shots shown on television or online meant fewer mentions. He still made our social leaderboard. Barely.
9. Jason Dufner
Jason Dufner, last year's runner-up at the PGA Championship, had a good week. Not a great week (like last year) but a good week. However, his presence and activity on Twitter kept the social world engaged and, even as his name dropped off the front page of the leaderboard, it remained on our social caddy standings.
8. Carl Pettersson
Pettersson entered the weekend tied for the lead and was still in contention entering the final round. However, an unfortunate penalty on the first hole effectively ended any run he could have made at the leader, but the buzz around that ruling kept his name high on social trends. It was enough to keep him at No. 8.
7. Bubba Watson
The Masters champion had a solid week, finishing tied for 11th place. But his social media following is strong and there will always be talk of him. Further, following his round, he proceeded to empty his bag of all balls and gloves and tossed them to fans. Twitter loved that act and gave him due deference for it. He moved up to No. 7.
Kiawah has been the catch-all term from social media as people have raved about the course, showed concern about the weather or shared traffic tie-ups. It's safe to say that this South Carolina gem will never be considered "under the radar" ever again -- not with all of social media talking about it like they have this week.
5. John Daly
I'm pretty sure Big John could walk through the crowd without ever hitting a golf shot and he'd trend. Especially as he was wearing his trademark "LoudMouth Golf" outfits. His colorful and flamboyant style always makes him a fan favorite. One photo we posted of him on our Facebook page drew more than 300 comments and 1600 likes. That's moving the needle.
4. Ian Poulter
Poulter started his round with five straight birdies and it seemed for all the world that he'd do something ridiculous and historic to get his first major win. Alas, it was not to be, but his famed Twitter presence as well as his strong play drew him enough mentions to capture spot No. 4.
3. Tiger Woods
For the first time, Tiger Woods did not win our Social Caddy leaderboard. With high hopes as the day started, and more time on the course than any other player (as well as being featured twice in our marquee pairings on PGA.com), Tiger never could mount a charge and, thus, his name fell off the tournament leaderboard, and down on our social caddy standings.
2. PGA Champ
For a while there, it looked like our official hashtag, #PGAChamp, might actually win a day. People were talking about so many things regarding the tournament and using the hashtag made their posts/tweets official. We posted a high number of mentions and thought, fittingly, the championship would be the overall winner for the week. We gave it a good effort. But ...
1. Rory McIlroy
McIlroy's amazing eight-shot victory was not as lopsided as his win on social media today. All the world seemed to revel in his march into the record books as McIlroy almost tripled the second-place mentions. From his young age to his dating life to his dominating performance, Rory was the story all day – as he should have been. Congrats on your second win of the day, Rory McIlroy.