Barely over a month after a masterful (pun intended) showing at the Augusta National Golf Club, fans and enthusiasts worldwide don’t have to wait long before being treated to the season’s second men’s major tournament. Indeed, the 2022 PGA Championship will tee off on May 19. For three days, the best golfers in the world will battle it out for the honor of hoisting the coveted Wanamaker Trophy.
In this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about the 104th edition of the PGA Championship, including its rich history and fun tidbits to serve as a fitting welcome to the prestigious tourney.
So without further ado:
2022 PGA Championship Must-Know Details
Where is the Venue of the 2022 PGA Championship?
The 104th PGA Championship will be held at the Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma, from May 19 to 22. The course has a history spanning 86 years and has seen its fair share of games played and major golf tournaments.
Southern Hills staged its inaugural major championship in 1946, with a historic victory by future World Golf Hall of Famer Babe Zaharias. She clinched the U.S. Women’s Amateur Title after besting Clara Sherman in the 36-hole matchplay final, 11 and 9.
Twelve years later, the course hosted its first men’s major championship, with Tommy Bolt winning the U.S. Open. The following is a comprehensive list of men’s majors played at Southern Hills with their respective winners:
|1958||U.S. Open||Tommy Bolt|
|1970||PGA Championship||Dave Stockton|
|1977||U.S. Open||Hubert Green|
|1982||PGA Championship||Raymond Floyd|
|1994||PGA Championship||Nick Price|
|2001||U.S. Open||Retief Goosen|
|2007||PGA Championship||Tiger Woods|
Goosen beat Mark Brooks in a playoff to win the last U.S. Open played at Southern Hills. Meanwhile, Woods topped Woody Austin by two shots to win the PGA, his 13th major championship at the time.
The Southern Hills Championship Course was designed by Perry Maxwell, a pioneering member of the American Society of Golf Course Architects and a member of the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame.
While Southern Hills is the most renowned of his original designs, he also made notable contributions to the renovations at Augusta National, home of the Masters. Many refer to him as the “father of Oklahoma golf.” for his splendid life’s work.
The course first opened in 1936 and has since undergone major changes, particularly in 2018 when Gil Hanse and Jim Wagner made significant changes to Maxwell’s layout. They proceeded to cut down trees, build new bunkers, and restore fairway widths.
For the upcoming PGA Championship, it’ll measure 7,556 yards at a par of 70. Additionally, there will only be 2 par 5s, both measuring over 630 yards.
Scorching weather conditions have been a recurring theme throughout the major championship tournaments played in Southern Hills, which is not surprising given that it’s Oklahoma in the summer.
Back in 2007, when Woods won the PGA Championship, temperatures topped 100 degrees every day, with a high of 102 degrees on Sunday.
Thankfully, stifling heat won’t be much of a concern this year after moving the PGA Championship to May. The forecast for Tulsa from the 19th to the 22nd shows temperatures ranging from 81-84 degrees, with no signs of breaching the triple-digit mark.
Who’s on the 2022 PGA Championship Field List?
The field for the 2022 PGA Championship has been announced, and at least 156 players will be vying for the second majors title of the season. The tournament won’t be short of star power for sure, as the field will feature the best of the best, including:
- 16 PGA Champions
- 34 Major Champions
- 3 World Golf Hall of Fame Members
- 4 Ryder Cup Captains
Golf fans from all over will also get to witness the top 70 players who earned the most PGA Championship points coming from the 2022 Wells Fargo Championship, the top-20 finishers from the 2022 PGA Professional Championship, and the last spot reserved for the victor of the AT&T Byron Nelson.
Perhaps the most notable of all is the most decorated golfer of the modern era, Tiger Woods. Woods is still on the comeback trail from injury, but he was recently seen scouting the course, fueling speculation that he will be there to compete come tee time next week.
Mere days before the tournament kicks off, the PGA of America announced that Phil Mickelson wouldn’t be defending his PGA Championship title.
Earlier this year, he was mired in controversy after comments he made about Saudi Arabia and his links to the Saudi-funded rival golf league. He opted to take a break from the game but was expected to be back until the announcement on Friday.
Due to this development, Mickelson will become the third PGA champion who won’t defend his title in the last 75 years.
How Much is the Prize at Stake?
Being the major that it is and one of the most eagerly anticipated tournaments on this year’s golf calendar, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the price at stake at the 2022 PGA Championship is a cool $12 million!
PGA Championship: Brief History and Cool Facts
The PGA of America, primarily composed of club and teaching professionals, runs the PGA Championship. They established the event as a high-profile tournament exclusively for professional golfers. Thus, the golfers who participate every year are all professionals. The only way for leading amateurs to get invited is by winning the U.S Open, British Open, or the Masters.
How the Idea was Conceived
The idea of the PGA Championship was born at a conference in January 1916. At that time, 35 professional golfers gathered to discuss their plan to establish an organization that later became the PGA of America. Those in attendance agreed that they should stage a national golf tournament annually.
The host of the said conference in 1916 was no other than golfer and businessman Rodman Wanamaker. He was also the one who sponsored the trophy for the PGA Championship. Well over a century after, the Wanamaker Trophy is still being awarded to the top performer of the PGA Championship.
Since 1916, the PGA Championship was a match-play event until 1958, when it switched to stroke play. Jim Barnes of England won both the inaugural event and the second championship at the Engineers Country Club in Roslyn Harbor, New York. From 1916 through 1923, the winner’s share was $500, then doubled to $1,000 afterward.
In 1917 or 1918, the PGA Championship wasn’t held due to the outbreak of World War I. When it resumed in 1920, the tournament was played for the first time outside of New York and was held at the Flossmoor Country Club in Flossmoor, Illinois.
Only 17 courses have hosted the PGA Championship on more than one occasion since the tournament’s inception in 1916. The course that has held the tournament the most times is Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma, which has hosted the event four times before (1970, 1982, 1994, and 2007) and a fifth time this year.
Traditionally, courses in the midwest and eastern United States host the PGA Championship. However, hosting rotates to the West Coast, as it did in 2020 at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco, California.
As we mentioned, legitimate golf royalty makes up the list of PGA Championship winners. Jack Nicklaus, Ben Hogan, Tiger Woods, Lee Trevino, Gary Player, and many other greats of the sport have lifted the coveted Wanamaker Trophy.
With five titles each, Jack Nicklaus and Walter Hagen hold the record for most PGA Championships. The Golden Bear won in 1963, 1971, 1973, 1975, and 1980, while Hagen won in 1921, 1924, 1925, 1926, and 1927, capping an incredible four-year winning streak.
Arnold Palmer is one of the greats who doesn’t appear on the list of PGA Championship winners. While Palmer won seven majors in his career, the highest-ranking he recorded at PGA Championship tournaments is second, accomplishing the feat three times.
- The Wanamaker Trophy is the biggest and heaviest trophy in major championship golf and one of the largest in the world. It weighs 27 lbs and is 28 inches tall, with a diameter of 10 ½ inches and a width of 27 inches at the handles.
- The winner of the PGA Championship gets to keep the replica of the original trophy for a year. The legitimate trophy is safe in the hands of the PGA of America after going missing in 1928 while in the care of legendary golfer Walter Hagen.
- American-born players have won a total of 77 PGA Championships. South Africa and Australia won four times apiece, while players from Scotland, England, and Fiji each won twice.
- The PGA Championship purse was $2,580 when held for the first time in 1916, with the champion getting $500. The prize money went up to $100,000 in 1983 and breached the $1 million mark for the first time in 2003.
- The last five majors champions at Southern Hills made it into the World Golf Hall of Fame.
- Jordan Spieth must win a PGA Championship title to become the sixth player in history to record a career grand slam.
Undoubtedly, the PGA Championship is one of the most remarkable events in golf. It boasts the strongest field in the game, and the sport’s most legendary players have won the PGA Championship title at one point in their careers.
Truly, this major event has served as the stage for several of golf’s most iconic moments and will continue to do so on Thursday and in the coming years.