Scottie Voted PGA Tour Player of The Year, Still Wants More

Hero World Challenge - Final Round
Hero World Challenge - Final Round / Mike Ehrmann/GettyImages

To nobody’s surprise, Scottie Scheffler was voted PGA Tour Player of the Year by his fellow PGA Tour pros.  Tipping the scales in his favor was his victory at The Players.

“Obviously, an honor to receive the award,” he said in a press conference at The Sentry. “Anything that you receive voted on by your peers is very special to me.”

Importantly, it was the second time in a row for Scheffler. The secret to his good season, he noted, was consistency, even though his putting wasn’t what he wanted it to be.   Recently, he’s been working on improving that aspect of his game, and it paid off with an end-of-season victory at the Hero World Challenge.  

The way Scheffler approaches the game is to make constant improvements.  

"Last year my ball striking was obviously very good and my putting wasn't as good as I think it needed to be, That was one of the things that I kind of tried to focus on in the off-season. "

Scottie Scheffler

He has paid attention to other things in his game between seasons in the past including his diet, his time in the gym, creating different kinds of golf shots, and now, putting.   

“I saw a little bit of the fruits of that at the Hero,” he explained. “I had a nice putting week and I feel like the ball's coming off my blade really nice right now and I'm looking forward to coming out this week and seeing where I'm at.”

But just because he had one good week on the greens, he isn’t complacent.  

“I didn't feel like I won enough in 2022, and I didn't feel like I won enough in 2023,” Scheffler said, adding that he’s felt that way every year he’s played golf. “Anytime you don't win, I think you want to win the tournament, and it's just one of those deals. I think you never win enough, really.”

He must be channelling Tiger Woods who was always about the Ws.

While consistency is important, he really loves winning. Well, what golfer doesn’t? It’s just most of them don’t talk about it.  Consistently good ball-striking, he thinks, leads to opportunities to win.  Then it’s a matter of making the putts that count.

“You go through stretches where, like the beginning of the year for me in 2022, where it seemed like everything was going in,” he explained. “I was chipping in, rolling in putts, things were going my way.”

Then after a few weeks or months, they weren’t going in with as much frequency.

"If you look at the top-10 players in the world, consistently, they're always the best ball strikers. Ball striking, week-to-week, keeps you at the top of the leaderboard, and it's the guy that happens to hole the putts."

Gaining momentum by sinking 10 to 15-footers is not easy, he explained.  But, he added, the guy who can make putts for birdie from 10 to 15 feet is going to be in a better position on the leaderboard than the guy who has to make par putts from that range.  The second guy, Scheffler said, is not going to be shown on TV. 

As we all know, the exception to that is Tiger Woods.  These days, there is no such thing as too much Tiger on TV.

“Sometimes it's nice to get a few putts at the beginning of the round from maybe four to eight feet where you just see the ball go in the hole. Sometimes that can help momentum,” he added. “Golf's a funny game. You can hit a lot of good shots and a lot of good putts, and sometimes it's just not your week.”

Will this be Scheffler’s week?  He certainly hopes so. His game is in good shape. He’s bringing a remarkable attitude. He works to be prepared for each time he plays, and if the putts don’t break his way or the wind gusts come at the wrong time, while he doesn’t like it, he can deal with it.

“When my approach and attitude are great, then that's a successful week,” he said, but it doesn’t mean the result doesn’t matter.  

“I don't like to lose at all. I hate the feeling, and I love the feeling of winning, I really do, it's a tremendous feeling.”