With U.S. Open performance, Pak stays atop PGA University ranking
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John Pak (USGA/John Mummert photo)
Last week’s U.S. Open at famed Winged Foot Golf Club provided an opportunity for five players in the PGA TOUR University Ranking to grab some valuable points heading into a fall stretch heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Entering the week, all eyes were on Florida State standout John Pak, who opened with a 1-under 69 and finished the week as Low Amateur at T51. The 21-year-old, who debuted at No. 1 in the Ranking on July 22, maintained his top spot thanks to the program’s system, which applies finishes from NCAA Division I Men’s Golf events, as well as all major championships and PGA TOUR events – all over a rolling, two-year period.
Related: John Pak tops first-ever PGA Tour University ranking
The other four PGA TOUR U players to compete at Winged Foot – Chun An Yu, Davis Thompson, Sandy Scott and John Augenstein – missed the cut, but gained valuable points looking towards a year-long effort to secure a top-15 spot in the final Ranking next June. The top five players will be provided access to the Korn Ferry Tour, while Nos. 6-15 will have their choice of one of the three International Tours to compete on.
Yu opened his week with an even-par 70, but struggled during Friday’s second round before finishing with a 10-over 80 to miss the cut. The Chinese Taipei native and Arizona State star kept his spot at No. 2 in the ranking, but it was the No. 3 position which delivered the first bit of movement following the U.S. Open.
Oklahoma State’s Austin Eckroat fell from No. 3 to No. 5 due to Thompson and Scott’s presence in the field, as the duo ascended to Nos. 3 and 4, respectively.
Thompson matched Pak’s opening-round 69 (tied for the lowest amateur round in U.S. Open history at Winged Foot), but fell victim to a second-round 78 and missed the cut. The University of Georgia All-American, who was a finalist for the Haskins Award and Jack Nicklaus Award this year, was paired with former Bulldogs Brendon Todd and Harris English in the first two rounds. All told, UGA was represented with seven players in the U.S. Open field.
Scott, who decided to return to Texas Tech this past summer in part due to the PGA TOUR University program, missed the cut with respectable rounds of 75-74—149. The 22-year-old Nairn, Scotland, native, was making his first career start in a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event.
While Pak, Yu, Thompson and Scott earned their U.S. Open exemptions last month, John Augenstein secured his ticket to Winged Foot when he finished runner-up in the 2019 U.S. Amateur, losing 2 and 1 to Georgia Tech’s Andy Ogletree in the championship match. The Owensboro, Kentucky, native, who is slated to compete at the Masters in November, posted rounds of 74-75—149 to miss the cut, but still moved up three spots to No. 6 in the ranking given his appearance in the national championship.
Nos. 7 through 10 remained unchanged in the new Ranking, with Garett Reband (Oklahoma), McClure Meissner (Southern Methodist), Trevor Werbylo (Arizona) and Jovan Rebula (Auburn) rounding out the top 10.