It’s pretty easy to assume most professional golfers live a pretty lavish lifestyle when you consider the money up for grabs at PGA Tour events and the massive bags of cash that were dangled in front of the players who’ve defected to LIV Golf.
That may be the case when you’re talking about some of the more marketable names in the sport, but most guys who are boasting triple digits on the Official World Golf Ranking chart have to do a fair amount of grinding in order to keep their dreams alive.
You’ve probably never heard of Mike Sweeney, but he’s just one of the many aspiring pro golfers out there who’ve had to make a ton of sacrifices in the hopes of punching their ticket to the PGA Tour.
In 2018, the Connecticut native moved to Florida to pursue that goal at the age of 23 and spent a couple of years living with his dad before striking out on his own after deciding to use the money he could’ve spent to rent his own apartment to fund his golf dream.
According to MondayQ, Sweeney opted to live out of the 2014 Hyundai Elantra he slept in to save money while pursuing various odd jobs to scrape together enough cash to compete in various tournaments on the Florida-based Minor League Tour.
While he’s racked up a few thousand dollars in those events, it hasn’t been enough to get his own place—although that could change based on what’s unfolded since he qualified for the HomeTown Lenders Championship, the Korn Ferry Tour event he earned a spot in after qualifying with a solid showing at the Huntsville Open.
Sweeney—who also moonlights as a rapper—said he came close to maxing out his credit card after dropping $500 to stay in a seedy hotel near the course where the tournament will be played, but his story attracted the attention of a number of people who’ve flooded his Venmo with donations that had surpassed the $20,000 mark as of Wednesday night.
Y’all are amazing. Mike Sweeney is approaching 5 digits via Venmo.
Really awesome. He’s so stoked. And so appreciative.
“It’s by far the most money I’ve ever had, I almost don’t know what to do.”
Very cool of all of you. This stuff makes me really happy.
— Monday Q Info (@acaseofthegolf1) April 26, 2023
Over 20K. Including a major champ. Kid is front page on the newspaper in the Huntsville Paper and on the local news.
Pretty damn awesome.
— Monday Q Info (@acaseofthegolf1) April 27, 2023
You love to see it.