After shocking arrest, Scottie Scheffler in contention at PGA Championship

Scottie Scheffler at the 2024 PGA Championship on Friday.

After a chaotic morning that included an arrest and trip to the police station, Scottie Scheffler finally teed off in Round 2 of the PGA.

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It might not be a stretch to say Friday at the PGA Championship was the most bizarre round of golf Scottie Scheffler has ever played. Not necessarily for what happened on the course, but the chaos and confusion that unfolded before he teed off at 10:08 a.m. local at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky.

While most golf fans were sleeping, Scheffler was being arrested following a chaotic scene outside the golf course. Around 5 a.m. Friday, a tournament vendor had been struck and killed by a shuttle bus while attempting to cross the road. About an hour later, Scheffler arrived in backed-up traffic, which was due to the investigation surrounding the death but not helped by what was already a problematic spectator flow entering and exiting the grounds.

According to the police report, Scheffler drove into the outbound lane and tried to get around the traffic but was stopped and given instructions from a police officer. The report says Scheffler “refused to comply and accelerated forward, dragging [the officer] to the ground.” ESPN’s Jeff Darlington caught some of the aftermath on video. Scheffler, in a statement, later called it a “very chaotic situation,” adding, “There was a big misunderstanding of what I thought I was being asked to do. I never intended to disregard any of the instructions.”

Scheffler was charged with second-degree assault of a police officer, third-degree criminal mischief, reckless driving and disregarding traffic signals from an officer. Afterwards, Scheffler said he couldn’t detail what happened that led to the arrest (although he again called it a “huge misunderstanding”) but did detail what it was like waiting in a jail cell for a tee time.

He said his body was shaking and he was in shock and fear. He asked an officer to “hang out” with him so he could calm down. He later saw a picture of himself on TV, which was tuned in to ESPN. When he was released from police custody — he said he did his pre-tournament stretching in the jail cell — he arrived at the course shortly after 9 a.m., barely an hour before his tee time.

“I was never angry,” he said. “I was just in shock, and I think my body was just — I was shaking the whole time. I was shaking for like an hour. It was definitely a new feeling for me.”

scottie scheffler soon after arriving at the pga championship friday
After Scottie Scheffler’s arrest, a hectic 88 minutes — then a tee time
By: Sean Zak

Tee times were pushed back 80 minutes due to the fatal accident. Despite a rushed warmup and difficult circumstances from earlier in the day, Scheffler was welcomed by a roar of support from the gallery when he arrived to the 10th tee.

And then? He made birdie. And then made lots more. Scheffler shot a five-under 66 to get to nine under for the tournament, which easily puts him in contention for the weekend. (Collin Morikawa leads at 11 under, and the afternoon wave is still on the course.)

“I didn’t really have an understanding of what had transpired this morning,” Scheffler said. “My main focus after getting arrested was wondering if I could be able to come back out here and play, and fortunately I was able to do that. It was nice to put together a solid round today.”

Starting on the back nine, Scheffler hit a wedge to 3 feet on the par-5 10th and made his birdie. He went bogey-birdie on the next two before making another birdie on the 18th to turn in two under. He added birdies on 2 and 4 to give him three in a five-hole stretch.

On the par-5 7th, he missed the green way right with this second shot, but he wedged on to 19 feet and made the putt to get to nine under. He finished his day by getting up and down to save par on the 9th hole.

Scheffler now has a weekend tee time, and he’s still in search of his fifth win in his last six starts — including a second straight major title.

But after Friday morning, it’s unlikely that the golf will be the only topic of conversation going forward.

“I still feel like my head is spinning a little bit,” Scheffler said. “But I was fortunate to be able to make it back out and play some golf today.”

Josh Berhow Editor

As’s managing editor, Berhow handles the day-to-day and long-term planning of one of the sport’s most-read news and service websites. He spends most of his days writing, editing, planning and wondering if he’ll ever break 80. Before joining in 2015, he worked at newspapers in Minnesota and Iowa. A graduate of Minnesota State University in Mankato, Minn., he resides in the Twin Cities with his wife and two kids. You can reach him at

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