DALLAS — Former Dallas Cowboys quarterback and CBS announcer Tony Romo has accepted a sponsor’s exemption to play in the PGA Tour’s AT&T Byron Nelson Championship, May 9-12, at his home course, Trinity Forest Golf Club.
The announcement was made late Monday by the Momentous Institute, which operates the Nelson.
It will be Romo’s second PGA Tour solo tournament after playing in the Corales Puntacana Resort event last spring, where he shot 15 over par for two days and missed the cut. Last fall, Romo advanced through the pre-qualifying stage of the Web.com tour, but missed the cut in the first stage of Web.com qualifying in Dallas.
He has played as an amateur in several AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am tournaments, including two weeks ago where he was paired with former Ryder Cup Captain Jim Furyk and hit one of the shots of the tournament, chipping his ball from a hospitality tent floor at Pebble Beach to within a couple feet of the pin.
Romo won the 2018 American Century Championship, a nationally televised pro-am in Lake Tahoe where Byron Nelson tournament director Jon Drago annually serves as a rules official. After seeing his victory in person, Drago considered inviting Romo to play in the Nelson. After his limited success at qualifying school in the fall, he felt the timing was right to officially invite Romo to play at home in the $7.7 million dollar PGA Tour event in front of his home fans. The tournament is also scheduled to be telecast by Romo’s football employer, CBS Sports, giving his TV colleagues a chance to see his golf skills in person.
“Golf is one of my greatest passions, outside of my family and football, and I am honored to have the opportunity to complete against the pros in this year’s AT&T Byron Nelson Championship,” Romo said in a press release distributed by the Nelson tournament.
Several PGA Tour players have already committed to playing this year, including defending champion Aaron Wise and Dallas native Jordan Spieth. Spieth and Romo are each members of Trinity Forest, where he and Romo have played dozens of practice rounds together.
Last year was the first for the Nelson at Trinity Forest, and while the golf course earned praise in its debut, the tournament lacked top-ranked players, and spectators were sparse at the new venue. Tournament officials are hoping that its new date, the week before the PGA Championship, will help player commitments. This year, they’re adding the hope that Romo will draw in more of the Dallas sports fan masses, just like he did for years nearby as the Cowboys quarterback.