Phil Mickelson lost a friendly wager with a fan on Saturday at The Barclays. That bet could cost Mickelson significantly more if the PGA Tour chooses.
Mickelson was in the rough on the par-4 18th at Ridgewood C.C. The five-time major winner took up a fan on a bet that Mickelson couldn’t get up and down for birdie on his final hole of the day. Mickelson gave the fan 4-to-1 odds on a $5 bet that he’d pull off the very unlikely. Lefty made bogey and paid out the $20 to the fan.
That bet is a violation of the PGA Tour Player Handbook. Under Section VI-C-5, PGA Tour players cannot “bet money or anything of value on a golf tournament or similar event, whether or not the player is in such competition.”
The penalty for breaking rules under Section VI of the PGA Tour handbook include “fine, suspension from play in PGA Tour cosponsored and coordinated tournaments, [or] permanent disbarment from such play.”
Mickelson has violated this rule in the past. At the 2001 NEC Invitational, Mickelson and Mike Weir were among players watching the final action unfold at Firestone C.C. With Jim Furyk bunkered in a playoff and needing to hole it to extend, Mickelson bet Weir $20 at 25-to-1 odds that Furyk would make the shot. Furyk did, and Mickelson was to collect $500.
At the time, PGA Tour official Bob Combs said it was a “technical violation” of the player regulations, but it didn’t have an outcome on the tournament.