Woods tops US$100 million in earnings
By Jimmy Golen ,AP
September 5, 2012, 12:09 am TWN
NORTON, Massachusetts -- Tiger Woods has become the first US$100 million man on the PGA Tour.
Woods finished third Monday in the Deutsche Bank Championship and made US$544,000, pushing his career total to US$100,350,700. Next on the list is Phil Mickelson, who finished fourth at the TPC Boston and has US$66,805,498.
"The purse increase helps," Woods said after a final-round 66 left him two strokes behind winner Rory McIlroy in the second week of the four-tournament FedEx Cup playoff. "I won fewer tournaments than Sam Snead has, but obviously he was in a different era. It's just that we happened to time it up right and happened to play well when the purses really had a nice spike up."
Snead, the career leader with 82 PGA Tour victories, earned just US$620,126 in a career that started in 1937. His biggest prize was US$28,000 for a second-place finish in Milwaukee in 1968, and for most of his prime he played in tournaments with a total purse — that's all the payouts combined — of less than US$100,000.
Woods has won 74 tournaments, second all-time, including 38 times with a first prize of US$1 million or more. His winnings come out to an average of US$362,276.89 for each of his 277 career starts.
But it's not just good timing: Prize money skyrocketed on the PGA Tour after Woods went pro and brought huge crowds and television audiences to the sport.
"It was nice to have a nice start to my career, and I won some majors early," he said. "I think we got some interest in the game of golf. A lot more youth, that's for sure."
This weekend's Deutsche Bank paid out US$8 million, including the US$1.44 million that went to McIlroy for his third victory of the year.
By finishing strong — he was in the 60s in all four rounds — Woods remains in contention for the US$10 million FedEx Cup bonus, which he has won twice. That money isn't even included in his official career earnings, nor is the hundreds of millions he has collected in endorsements.