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A few weeks ago, it was Scottie Scheffler earning one of U.S. Ryder Cup captain Steve Stricker’s captain’s picks, while another 25-year-old rising star, Sam Burns, was on the receiving end of a phone call notifying him that he wouldn’t be teeing it up at Whistling Straits.
Now, Burns, who is younger than Scheffler by just over a month, has passed his contemporary in the Official World Golf Ranking after Sunday’s victory at the Sanderson Farms Championship. Burns’ one-shot win in Jackson, Mississippi, moved the LSU product from 25th to 18th in the world, now four ahead of Scheffler, who didn’t play and dropped a spot to 22nd.
“Hearing the news that I didn’t make the team was definitely very motivating and definitely kind of gut wrenching,” Burns said. “And, so, yeah, I think it’s definitely motivated me to try to be on the next team and continue to try to improve and hopefully be on it the next go.”
Burns is already making a strong case, not only for a potential future Ryder Cup nod but also a debut Presidents Cup appearance next year. He ended last year ranked just outside the top 150, but a maiden Tour win in May at the Valspar Championship combined with runners-up at the Byron Nelson and WGC-FedEx and Sunday’s triumph has rocketed Burns into the world’s elite.
The was no movement in the top 10 this week with most of those players taking a break following the Ryder Cup, but there were some players who made moves further down the world order.
Chan Kim went from No. 112 to No. 79 after winning on the Japan Tour, the sixth of the Arizona State product’s career.
Danny Willett’s victory at the Alfred Dunhill Links at St. Andrews sent the Englishman and former world No. 9 rising 69 spots to No. 101.
PGA Tour rookie Cameron Young and veteran Nick Watney, both T-2 at Sanderson, entered last week ranked Nos. 174 and 660, respectively. Now, they are Nos. 114 and 303, respectively.