Sam Burns finished in the top half of the field in his first time around Kapalua in 2022.
Rounds of 72-64-68-69 netted him T-19th. He co-led the field with 48 pars and was T-2nd with just one bogey on the week, but a double bogey on his penultimate hole of the tournament and no eagles kept him from a higher result.
Burns followed up a breakout 2021 campaign with another stellar year in 2022. He won the Valspar Championship and Charles Schwab Challenge and added three more top-10s.
His record didn’t show it, but Burns also played some incredible golf at the Presidents Cup.
It’s shaping up that Burns will be making his Ryder Cup debut this fall, but he’s still got to go and earn it.
Posting stats like he did last season on the PGA Tour ought to do the trick. The LSU alum ranked 12th in strokes gained per round (1.39). He gained strokes in every category, including putting where he ranked 10th (.553).
Going low is a requisite to playing well at the Plantation Course. He was eighth in birdie average last season (4.33).
One of his weaknesses is driving accuracy (55.38%, 162nd), which is negated due to the wide fairways and lack of thick rough in play this week.
At 24th in driving distance (309.6), the 26-year-old has the firepower to tame a 7,500-yard plus course.
Not to mention, he’s a Bermuda specialist who should feel comfy on Kapalua’s greens.