II. ELIGIBILITY

II.   ELIGIBILITY

Requirements for eligibility of Professional contestants in Tennessee Section PGA tournaments shall be strictly enforced by the Tournament Committee/Director. The Board of Directors is charged with the responsibility of determining the playing privileges and it shall publish and interpret the Guidelines the same as provided for in the Constitution. The withholding of playing privileges does not violate or deny the Constitutional rights of any member, as such privilege is not discriminatory and is in compliance with the established rules governing player participation eligibility. A player must be eligible by the tournament deadline and continue to be eligible through the completion of the event.

Only eligible Golf Professionals and eligible Amateurs designated within the following categories shall be eligible to compete in official events conducted by the Tennessee Section PGA. There will be no exceptions.

 

1. All Tennessee Section PGA Class A, active members, life members and retired members in good standings, except A-3 classifications, shall be granted full playing rights and privileges in the Tennessee Section.  Members of the Tennessee Section PGA who hold an A-3 status shall have no playing privileges in the Tennessee Section.  Exception: A-3’s who are over the age of 50 have playing rights in the Senior State Open.

 

Active PGA members, who are unemployed or become unemployed from a full-time Golf Professionals' job, shall receive a grace period of 180 days to retain playing privileges in Section events. After 180 days, the professional shall lose playing privileges until becoming re-employed on a full-time basis as a Golf Professional at which time the professional shall immediately have playing privileges reinstated. The professional then must remain employed on a full-time basis as a Golf Professional for one (1) full year before receiving another 180 day grace period for playing privileges. All unemployed Class A members who transfer into the Tennessee Section shall not receive the 180-day grace period and do not have playing privileges until they become eligibly employed. Full-time employment in the Tennessee Section shall be defined as working in an eligible classification as defined by the PGA of America an average of 36 hours per week during the golf season, which is a minimum of eight (8) months in Tennessee.

 

2. Apprentices shall be eligible to compete in all Section tournaments with the exception of the Section Championship/PNC and the Challenge Cup Matches. Apprentices will not be allowed to compete for the Tennessee PGA Player of the Year Award, but can compete for the Assistant Player of the Year.  Apprentices who are eligibly employed in the golf business and have properly registered in the PGA Professional Golf Management (PGA PGM) program will have playing privileges within their chapter, and will be eligible to play in Section events or events conducted that use Section eligibility rules.

 

3. Amateurs, by invitation from the Tournament Committee with approval by the Board of Directors, may compete in Tennessee PGA Section events and the Tennessee Challenge Cup Matches. Amateur golfers competing in Tennessee PGA conducted events must meet the USGA definition of an amateur golfer.  The Tennessee PGA reserves the right to reject amateur entrants who are not in good standing or under suspension by other local, state, regional, or nationally recognized golf association. Non-amateurs are ineligible to compete in Tennessee PGA events except PGA Tour qualifiers.

 

4. Senior Professionals must have reached the age of 50 by the first day of the event to compete in Senior Tournaments.  In selected events, Senior Tees will be used.  Although competing from separate tees, senior professionals will compete for the same purse.  These yardages will be approximately 3-5% shorter than regular course length.  Events where senior tees will be used include (but not limited to): Pro-Official, Pro-Assistant, Pro-Pro, Pro-Junior and Pro-Superintendent.