Rickie Fowler melted – but you should know what he did after that


Rickie Fowler Saturday on the 18th green at TPC Southwind.

Getty Images

The dashboard shows a new one. But the child will not remember.

This FedEx St. Jude Championship started with a glow for Rickie Fowler, and, if we’re being honest, that’s more than he’s had in quite some time. By now you’re no doubt familiar with Fowler’s descent over the years and the various offers to get back into the shape that made him a star, but this week, this week was different. He had snuck in at the start of this week’s playoffs on the number – Mr. 125 in the season standings – although he was helped by the absence of those who left for LIV. But who counts? Fowler was there.

Ricky Fowler

What’s the #1 thing holding Rickie Fowler back? He thinks he knows.


Nick Piastowski

Then it got really good. He shot a 65, his lowest number since…since…last October? In this space on Thursday, after his first round at TPC Southwind, we even wrote this headline: “What’s the #1 thing holding Rickie Fowler back?” He thinks he knows. The answer is putting, and knowledge is power, they say.

There was more. Fowler had changed caddy, breaking up with longtime curler Joe Skovron. He changed his putter. He had momentum. And who knew what the next three days might hold.

“I felt like I had some good stuff, and in a way, nothing to lose,” Fowler said after his first lap. “Being 125, obviously you have to play well to get to next week, but it would be a big bonus if we could do that and move on. Kind of leave it all there, see what happens, but really happy with the start.

If you’ve made it this far, the tone tells you where it’s at. But please wait.

On Friday, Fowler shot one for 71, despite making the weekend cut. To advance to next week’s second leg of the playoffs – only the top 70 in the standings earn a place in the BMW Championship – it would have to go down.

On Saturday, Fowler suffered a worse stroke than Friday. However, through 17 holes, things were looking good. But his 18th hole looked like this:

Rickie Fowler watches the fairway

How Rickie Fowler became the last man in the FedEx Cup Qualifiers


Jack Hirs

First shot: tee shot in water

Second shot: penalty and drop

Shot three: short iron, left and in water

Move four: penalty and drop

Shot Five: Short But Sure Iron

Sixth shot: short chip

Seventh shot: chip on

Eighth shot: 6 foot miss

New stroke: in

Quintuple-bogey, with the nine equaling his all-time highest Tour score. Fowler will play another 18 holes on Sunday. But his season, except oddity, is over.

“He’s a really positive guy in every way, but at some point it’s hard not to blame himself for making stupid mistakes like finishing that third round,” analyst Curt Byrum said. on Golf Channel. “It just seems like everything is snowballing in the wrong direction.”

But that introspection would have to wait.

Fowler had to sign autographs. From a tweet of Cameron Morfit of the PGA Tour, Fowler signed for everyone in fact. No one was left without a Fowler signature. Then there is the photo that Morfit also shared. In one of the best images you’ll see this year in golf, Fowler signs a boy’s white hat, and the kid looks mesmerized by the scene.

Remarkable, right?

As we said at the start, the leaderboard shows Fowler tied for 58th, and the record shows another tournament just continuing to search, and the scoreboard shows a nine.

But the child will not remember.

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Nick Piastowski

Nick Piastowski Editor

Nick Piastowski is an editor at and Golf Magazine. In his role, he is responsible for editing, writing and developing stories in the golf space. And when he’s not writing about ways to hit the golf ball farther and straighter, the Milwaukee native is probably playing the game, hitting the ball left, right and short, and drinking a cold beer to wash his score. You can contact him about any of these topics – his stories, his game or his beers – at