Ping signs U.S. Amateur champ Sam Bennett to multi-year deal
The introduction of NIL (name, image, likeness) deals in the amateur ranks have made it easier for equipment brands to establish relationships with the best collegiate golfers in the world, in the hopes it leads to something bigger down the road.
In Ping’s case, inking reigning U.S. Amateur champion Sam Bennett to a NIL during his time at Texas A&M turned Wednesday’s announcement into a mere formality.
Bennett, who’s making his pro debut at the Memorial Tournament, was officially unveiled as the newest member of Ping’s Tour staff this week. Financial terms of the multi-year agreement were not disclosed, but it’s understood Bennett will tee it up at Muirfield Village with 14 Ping clubs in the bag, including a G430 LST driver, G430 Max 3-wood and PLD Oslo 4 putter.
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Ping G430 LST
“I’ve been playing Ping equipment since my junior golf days and my relationship with their team during that time has been a big reason for my success,” said Bennett. “Besides making great equipment, they provide amazing service, making sure to properly fit me and custom-build the best clubs for my game. I’m very confident in my equipment, which allows me to go out and focus on winning tournaments. I’m excited to begin my journey as a professional knowing Ping will be with me every step of the way.”
In addition to winning the 2022 U.S. Amateur, Bennett made a splash at the Masters, where he opened with back-to-back rounds of 68 that had him in third place going into the weekend. Bennett would go on to finish 16th, good enough for low amateur honors.
The 23-year-old plans to make several starts on the PGA Tour (Memorial, RBC Canadian Open, U.S. Open, John Deere Classic) in the coming months; his 5th-place finish in the PGA Tour U standings also grants him exempt status on the Korn Ferry Tour through the end of the season.
“We’re excited to have Sam transition to our professional tour staff,” Ping president and CEO John K. Solheim said. “His performance in winning last year’s U.S. Amateur received a lot of attention but it was his remarkable play at the Masters that skyrocketed his popularity and made him one of the biggest stories of that week. He’s an amazing talent who plays with a lot of confidence and passion, which should serve him well as he begins his professional career. We’re looking forward to having Sam represent the Ping brand.”
Bennett joins a Tour staff that features fellow Aggie Cameron Champ, Tony Finau, Viktor Hovland, Jennifer Kupcho, Tyrrell Hatton and Corey Conners.
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