Joe Sanderson, with the PGA Tour’s Fed Ex Cup trophy on his left and the Sanderson Farms Championship trophy on his right.

The Sanderson Farms Championship, Mississippi’s lone tournament on the PGA Tour, will be played without spectators, tournament officials announced Monday.

All four rounds of the tournament (Oct. 1-4) at the Country Club of Jackson will be telecast live by The Golf Channel.

Still to be decided: Whether or not the two pro-ams that precede the tournament – and provide much of the event’s revenue stream – can be played. The Monday (Sept. 28) and Wednesday (Sept. 30) pro-ams pair groups of amateurs, who pay to play, with touring pros in pro-am competitions.

“We are still hoping to have our pro-ams, but it is a fluid situation based on the COVID-19 environment,” said Steve Jent, the tournament’s executive director. “If we do get the go ahead, the pro-ams will not be open to the public and full health and safety precautions will be in place for the pros and amateurs.”

All other tournament-related events, such as on-site hospitality, parties and fan events, will not occur.

Tournament officials said an extensive health and safety plan for screening and testing will be in place, including COVID-19 testing for players, caddies, officials and volunteers. In addition, the tournament plans to implement enhanced cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting practices in all areas of tournament operations in accordance with state and local guidelines.

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Rick Cleveland, a native of Hattiesburg and resident of Jackson, has been Mississippi Today’s sports columnist since 2016. A graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi with a bachelor’s in journalism, Rick has worked for the Monroe (La.) News Star World, Jackson Daily News and Clarion Ledger. He was sports editor of Hattiesburg American, executive director of the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame. His work as a syndicated columnist and celebrated sports writer has appeared in numerous magazines, periodicals and newspapers.
Rick has been recognized 13 times as Mississippi Sports Writer of the Year, and is recipient of multiple awards and honors for his reporting and writing.