November brings together the annual end of the PGA and Nationwide Tour seasons and hope for a new Canadian emergence on the 2009 Tours. This year was a disappointing finish for a couple of hopefuls that both began with such promise, Jon Mills on the PGA Tour and Bryan DeCorso on the Nationwide Tour.
Jon Mills had a great start to the PGA Tour season and ranked inside the top 125 guaranteed to keep their cards in 2009 for much of this season. However, Mills who missed the past seven consecutive cuts, but played a total of 32 events with 16 cuts made, can’t be too upset with his season in which he won over $489,000. He finished 154th on the money list and did earn a spot in the final stage of PGA Tour Qualify School. However, you don’t have to look further then his 2008 statistics to see why he failed to regain his status on Tour this year. Clearly a great ball striker he finished 51st in driving distance and 74th in greens in regulation percentage, however his putts per green in regulation rank of 158th explains why he is headed back to Q-School. Looking forward to seeing him back on Tour in 2009!
For DeCorso the story is a little different. After turning professional in 1995 he took the past few years off to work in construction and further develop his game. The 37 year old DeCorso played in 28 events but made only nine cuts, however he did win a Nationwide event back in May moving him firmly inside the top 25 on the Nationwide Tour and firmly within grasp of a 2009 PGA Tour card. However, similar to Mills a long series of missed cuts during the final months of the season ended with a 40th place finish on the money list, which gives him at least conditional status on the 2009 Nationwide Tour and an exemption into the final stage of PGA Tour Qualifying School.
I had the chance to play against DeCorso in action twice, although many years ago, at the Canadian Junior in Mill River, PEI in 1989 and during the NJCAA Championship in Scottsdale, AZ in 1993, where sadly, as I recall, he had better finishes in both events then I did. Surprised, I didn’t think so!