Rory McIlroy has been the loudest voice off the course this year in support of the PGA Tour as other golfers defected for the LIV Golf startup. On Sunday, he delivered on the course with a 66 for a comeback win to capture the Tour Championship and the FedEx Cup title, which carries an $18 million payout.
It was the third FedEx crown for McIlroy since the playoff launched in 2007—Tiger Woods is the only other golfer with two wins. The $18 million prize, up from $15 million last year, pushed his earnings for the 2021-22 golf season to $26.7 million, a record one-year tally for any player.
More from Sportico.com
“I believe in the game of golf. I believe in this tour, in particular. I believe in the players on this tour,” McIlroy said during the trophy presentation. “It’s the greatest place in the world to play golf, bar none, and I’ve played all over.”
McIlroy held the previous record for one-year payout with his $22.8 million in 2019 during his last FedEx win (he also won in 2016.) Patrick Cantlay earned $22.6 million in 2021 when he was the FedEx champion.
Scottie Scheffler started the final round of the Tour Championship with a six-stroke lead but shot a 73 and finished in a tie for second with Sungjae Im. It was still a year to remember for the No. 1 player in the World Golf Rankings. Scheffler started 2022 without a Tour victory on his resume but won four times, including the Masters. His $14 million in prize money shattered the previous single-season high, excluding FedEx bonuses.
Scheffler and Im both earned $6.5 million from this year’s $75 million FedEx bonus pool. Xander Schauffele earned $4 million, while Max Homa and Justin Thomas banked $2.75 million each for their tie for fifth at the Tour Championship.
McIlroy ranks fifth on the PGA Tour career money list with $66.2 million (Woods is first at $120.9 million). The tally does not include his FedEx bonuses which are $50.4 million, $22 million ahead of second-place Woods.
McIlroy finished second in Sportico’s 2022 look at the world’s highest-paid golfers with $38.4 million. It was compiled before LIV opened its checkbook with nine-figure signing bonuses for some of golf’s most popular players. McIlroy signed a multiyear extension this year with his club and ball sponsor, TaylorMade. Their partnership started in 2017.
McIlroy and Woods announced a new venture this week, TMRW Sports, along with its first project, TGL, a new golf league that will kick off in 2024. It will feature six teams of three PGA Tour players competing in an arena in primetime on Monday nights.
In addition to McIlroy and Woods, TMRW investors include former Golf Channel CEO, Mike McCarley, who will serve as TMRW CEO, NBC Sports executive Dick Ebersol, former Goldman Sachs partner and NFL EVP Eric Grubman, Dynasty Equity co-founder Don Cornwell, and former NHL COO John Collins.