Justin Thomas was named PGA Tour Player of the Year last week, a landslide winner after his breakout year.
Thomas won five tournaments including the PGA Championship and also took the overall FedEx Cup title.
“It’s a tremendous honor,” Thomas said during a conference call. “It really sunk in when I got the call from the commissioner (Jay Monahan). It was something I felt I may win because of Atlanta and how the year played out but I knew how tight of a race it was up until then. With one week to go a lot of things can happen.
“Any time you can win an award with someone like Jack Nicklaus’ name on the award, it definitely means a lot.”
In 25 events in 2017, he finished in the top 12 10 times and in the top 25 14 times. He won $9.921 million on the PGA Tour plus the $10 million for the FedEx Cup title.
His year started in late 2016 with an eighth-place finish at the Safeway Open, followed by a victory at the CIMB Classic. He shot a 23-under to take an early lead in the FedEx Cup standings. After taking fifth in the Frankling Templeteon Shootout, he won the SBS Tournament of Champions and the Sony Open in Hawaii on back-to-back weeks with scores of 22-under and 27-under.
He made history in Hawaii by becoming just the seventh man to shoot a 59. He went on to finish fifth at the WGC-Mexico and the Zurich Classic, then took fourth at the Memorial and 9th at the US Open.
He suffered a summer slump, cut from three straight events including The Open Championship to drop to fourth in the FedEx standings, then roared back to win the PGA Championship with an 8-under 276.