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‘Dawgs on Tour: South of the Border Edition!!

We’re already a few weeks into the new PGA Tour season, and while we can’t brag about a Tour winner quite yet, there is plenty to crow about. 

Shriners Hospitals For Children Open - Final Round
Name this caption in the comments, please.
Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images

Tournament: OHL Classic at Mayakoba

Course: El Camaleón GC, 7,039 yards, par 71. Between Cancun and Cozumel, Mexico.

Purse: $7,000,010. $1,260,000 to the winner.

Defending Champion: Graeme McDowell (N. Ireland). Beat Russell Knox (Scotland) in a playoff. Why these two had to travel to the Yucatan Peninsula to play each other is beyond me.

Fun Fact: Georgia’s own Harris English owns the tournament scoring record of 263, which he carded in 2013 upon winning. Since the par is 71 for 18, the four day par total is 284 and thus English finished at 21 under for the tourney.

Television: Thursday-Sunday, 1-4 p.m. ET (Golf Channel)

Former 'Dawgs in the Field (4): Brian Harman, Chris Kirk, Hudson Swafford, Harris English

The Tour just finished up in Vegas this past weekend, and contrary to marketing and popular belief, not everything stays there. As an example, Chris Kirk finished tied for 61st at the Shriners Hospital for Children Classic and brought home $14, 190. Lee McCoy cashed his first check as a professional and packed away $23,100 for a T41. Russell Henley shot 12 under par, tied for 24th and brought home a check for $58,080. Brian Harman did him one better on the card and also put $92,840 in his carry-on. Then there is Harris English who decided to splurge on 1st class airfare since he was carting around a T4 finish and a check for $272,800.

Now the Tour heads almost due south, straight into snowbird territory of Mayakoba, Mexico for the OHL Classic. The Tour came down here about 12 years ago and has come back every year since. It was an experiment to hold a US-based PGA Tour event in another country, and so far it has worked. As mentioned in the bullets above, Georgia’s Harris English went so far as to win this tournament, setting the scoring record in the process. So it works for UGA fans too.

Make no mistake that this is pretty close to the “off season”, so the tournaments aren’t as important, the purses aren’t as big, thus the fields don’t have that many top players. However, there is plenty to cheer for from a Bulldog perspective, so keep reading to see who you want to follow:

English is coming off a T4 last week, won this tourney a few years back, so I expect the 70th ranked player in the world to continue his good form.

Harman is the sneaky-good lefty of the golf world (see: Glavine, Tom). He’s ranked #113 in the world as last year was his worst in the last 3. If you call $1,299,801 in earnings a bad year.

Chris Kirk is 71st in the world and 16th in FedEx Cup points thanks to a 2nd place finish in Jackson, MS (Uptown Funk’d) and an 8th place finish at Safeway in Napa Valley.

And Hudson Swafford continues to make improvements, as he’s now 212th in the world (250+ earlier this year). He’s had 3 full years on the PGA Tour and increased his earnings every year. The next step is to get a top 3 finish, move inside top 150 in the world, and get invited to the “Invitational” tournaments and qualify for all the majors.

Our former ‘Dawgs have made noise the past few years during this late fall stretch, so here’s to that trend continuing. And as always….