What's new on the golf tour that first came to Omaha in 1996 and has been at The Club at Indian Creek for the Pinnacle Bank Championship presented by Chevrolet since 2017?
A new name for the tour and a new point system for ranking players.
In June, it was announced that Korn Ferry — the last names of the two founders — was immediately taking over sponsorship of what had been the Web.com Tour for the past seven years. Korn Ferry, a global organizational consulting firm, has a 10-year sponsorship deal with the PGA TOUR through 2028.
Sports fans may know Korn Ferry through its college football coaching searches that helped Michigan hire Jim Harbaugh and Texas land Charlie Strong. Pro leagues also have used it and the Big Ten Conference went through Korn Ferry in hiring new commissioner Kevin Warren.
"It is our first foray into anything like this," Jill Wiltfong, Korn Ferry chief marketing officer, told Street and Smith's Sports Business Journal. "We have been looking at ways to tell our story. We had talked to some agencies about sponsoring players but it didn't feel like the right fit. This is an opportunity to tell our story of advancement, development and the impact we can make."
Korn Ferry also becomes a PGA TOUR official marketing partner and assumes sponsorship of the Tour Championship that is the third and final event of the Korn Ferry Tour finals.
The Korn Ferry Tour will continue to award PGA TOUR membership to the top 25 players from the regular-season points list and 25 more from the three-event playoff system.
The point system is modeled after the PGATOUR's FedEx Cup and replaces the money list. Players accumulate points in each eligible official money event. Each tournament will award 500 points to the winner, 300 to the runner-up, 190 to third place, except that points for the final regular-season event start with 600 for the winner. All who make the cut, except amateurs, will receive points.
The effect is putting all tournaments on equal value regardless of total prizemoney. Of the 24 regular-season events, the Pinnacle Bank Championship's $600,000 purse is in the middle. Nine offer more, nine offer less and the other five also are at $600,000.