Golfers are flooding onto the grounds of the Country Club of Jackson as the Sanderson Farms Championship is once again underway.
The tournament, which is Mississippi’s lone PGA event, began Monday morning with the pro-am portion teeing off at 8 a.m. Two more pro-am rounds will take place on Wednesday, one for adults and another for youth, before the hopeful moneymakers hit the course on Thursday.
Over the last decade, the purse at the Sanderson Farms Championship has grown into one of the tour’s most competitive. Rivaling the Farmers Insurance Open and The Honda Classic, this year’s prize money in Jackson is north of $8 million with the overall winner taking home a check of $1.476 million.
“I remember when I first got here 10 years ago, I think the purse was $3.6 million,” Sanderson Farms Championship executive director Steve Jent reflected. “We became a standalone event in 2019 so that really elevated the purse by just over $2 million. The tour’s new TV rights deal that kicked in 2021 elevated all the purses by about $700,000. Then, we go up about $300,000 every year, so last year, we were at $7.9 million. Now, we’re at $8.2 million.”
Looking to repeat as winner will be Mackenzie Hughes, who became the first Canadian to win the event in 2022. Hughes will be joined by former winners Cameron Champ, Ryan Armour, Cody Gribble, Peter Malnati, and Scott Stallings.
Other notables in the field include Ludvig Åberg, Eric Cole, Lee Hodges, Tom Hoge, Adam Svensson, Lucas Herbert, and Emiliano Grillo. The Magnolia State will also be well-represented with Chad Ramey, Hayden Buckley, and Davis Riley. Those three will be looking to be the first Mississippi natives to win their home-state event.
“It could be the strongest we’ve seen a collective group of young guys from the state,” Jent said. “To have one of those win this one would be pretty cool.”
As for course conditions at the Country Club of Jackson, Mississippi has been experiencing drought-like weather for nearly three months now, but Jent said the greenskeepers have been able to maintain usual course conditions.
“The golf course is great. CCJ has its own well system, so they’ve been able to water the golf course,” Jent said. “It’ll be just like the players know it. That’s what they talk about all year long when I see them at other events. They say, ‘Steve, man, those are the best greens on tour.’”
For the fans, free shuttle transportation will be available at Northpark Mall. Upon arrival, there will be a variety of activities outside of the play itself with a fan zone on the 18th hole, the Michelob Ultra deck on the 13th, and a six-hole putting course for kids.
To purchase tickets for the Sanderson Farms Championship, click here. The event will wrap up on Sunday, Oct. 8.
Highest-ranked players in the field
|World Rankings||FedEx Cup|
|36. Emiliano Grillo||T29. Emiliano Grillo|
|50. Tom Hoge||37. Adam Svensson|
|53. Lee Hodges||40. Lee Hodges|
|57. Lucas Herbert||43. Eric Cole|
|62. Eric Cole||46. Tom Hoge|
|63. Adam Svensson||51. Mackenzie Hughes|
|65. Keith Mitchell||52. Nick Hardy|
|66. K.H. Lee||54. Alex Smalley|
|68. Alex Noren||56. Stephan Jaegar|
|71. Alex Smalley||57. S.H. Kim|