Charley Hoffman, who is the 2020 chairman of the PGA Tour's Player Advisory Council, has serious concerns about the rumored forthcoming Premier Golf League.
While several top-ranked and bigger-name players have spoken openly about the concept's backers courting them, Hoffman perhaps represents the views of a variety of world-class players who are less likely to get a call from the potential new league.
"I think it's intriguing that another group of people are willing to dump a bunch of money and try to guarantee us money, get some of the best players in the world to come over and play. I just don't think there's any sustainability or really any traction, personally," Hoffman said on the "Fairways of Life" show.
Between rumors and documentation shared from its somewhat shadowy founders and backers, the Premier Golf League is promising players a global schedule of something like 18 events with guaranteed weekly purses of at least $10 million. These 48-player events would be 54-hole affairs with no cut. There would also be a team component, with 12 franchises, including some potential player ownership.
Phil Mickelson has expressed significant interest in the concept, while Rory McIlroy declared he's "out" on the concept ahead of the WGC-Mexico Championship. Tiger Woods admitted being approached about the concept and that he and his team are looking at it.
However, there are many unknowns about the PGL concept, including some mystery around the principals of the concept and who is financially backing the concept. PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan told players in a memo that investors from Saudi Arabia are a big piece of the pie.
For his part, Hoffman doesn't like the idea of foreign nationals from a maligned government being the bankroll for the concept. However, he admits looking past the potential guaranteed money -- however brief -- is a mistake.
"I don't know if I would like to be owned by some Saudi money over there, but if something was a life-changing amount of money they offered me, you'd have to look at it as an independent contractor," Hoffman said. "Because there's no guarantees that I'll have a PGA Tour card in three or four years."
Ultimately, Hoffman believes players and fans alike appreciate golf's pay structure, which is exclusively based on week-to-week performance.
"As an athlete, any guaranteed money is very intriguing," Hoffman said. "But I've grown up playing this game that there is nothing given to you, and you earn every penny of it. And I think that a lot of golf fans really enjoy watching that."