Tournament: Wyndham Championship, August 13-16, 2020
Course: Sedgefield Country Club, 7,127 yards, par 70. Greensboro, NC
Purse: $6,400,000. Compare this to last week’s $11,000,000 purse at the PGA Championship.
Defending Champ: J.T. Poston. The affable North Carolinian didn’t make many mistakes on the way to a record-tying 22 under par win last year. One might say he didn’t make ANY mistakes, as Poston did not make a single bogey (or worse) through 4 rounds and 72 holes of professional golf. That’s a good thing, because J.T emerged victorious by a single stroke over Webb Simpson. It’s also the first time since the 1970’s that a PGA Tour victory didn’t include any squares on the scorecard.
Fun Fact: This is a very good Donald Ross design, and the only one Ross design that regularly hosts a PGA Tour event. Pretty amazing, since Ross gets credit on dozens and dozens of good courses across the country. He was primary designer at Pinehurst, Seminole in south Florida, and this audience might recognize his work at Athens Country Club, East Lake, Columbus Country Club, Idle Hour in Macon, and Augusta Country Club (not Augusta National).
TV Times: Thursday-Friday, 2 p.m.-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel). Saturday, 1 p.m.-3 p.m. (Golf Channel), 3 p.m.-6 p.m. (CBS). Sunday, 12:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. (Golf Channel), 2:30 p.m.-6 p.m. (CBS).
‘Dawgs in the Field: 9. Harris English, Brian Harman, Russell Henley, Chris Kirk, Kevin Kisner, Keith Mitchell, Sepp Straka, Hudson Swafford, Brendon Todd.
About that article title: The Sedgefield Clubhouse is where the Atlantic Coast Conference was founded, as South Carolina and 6 other schools wrote a check for $200 and drafted some by-laws. South Carolina had post-dated the check, thus pulled out 7 years later before it could be cashed. Now back to golf after these messages.
This is somehow the end of the PGA Tour regular season. A couple of years ago, the PGA Tour decided they didn’t quite have the following of college and NFL football, so they changed the calendar to start in the fall with minor tourneys, then all the big events and majors in the spring and summer, culminating with playoffs and a championship by the end of August. That went mostly according to plan, other than not playing golf for 9 weeks due to a global pandemic. They’ve been back at it since May, but stuck to the end game and will finish the season this weekend before the FedEx Cup playoffs begin next week.
Speaking of the playoffs, this is the last week to earn points. Whether that be to jump into the top 125, who are the only ones who make it to the post-season; or to jockey into a stronger position giving one a better chance to advance to the top 30 and Tour Championship. Eleven small points currently differentiates #125 from #126, and only a single point #124 from #125. So it will be a close run thing. Yet we have some former Bulldogs who will definitely make it in, so here’s where they stand:
Brendon Todd is #9 on the list, so he’s pretty much guaranteed a spot in the first two playoff events, and possibly the Championship (playoff events grant 4x the points of a regular Tour event, so movement is considerable).
Harris English is #28 in the rankings. Good enough for the first two events (top 125, then top 70), but must make the cut and maybe a top 25 if he wants the coveted top 30.
Kevin Kisner is #52. Make a cut this week, and he probably makes round 2 (missed cut=zero points). But he’s been pegged as a possible favorite this week based on the course set up and his Bulldog-mentality.
Bubba Watson comes in 62nd place. He’s not playing this week, so he’ll need to come out hot in the first playoff event if he wants to advance.
Sepp Straka (#67) and Brian Harman (#69). Both are sitting fine for round 1, both are playing this week, and both are looking to get inside the top 50 to make it easier to move forward in the post season.
(Just for reference, Brooks Koepka is 92nd and Jordan Spieth is 94th).
Keith Mitchell is in the 98th spot. There’s zero chance he falls out of the playoffs, but he knows he needs to do well the next two weeks to survive.
Russell Henley is at #118. It is possible that he does not make the playoffs. If he makes the cut this week, he’s in.
Hudson Swafford is #163. I think only a top 5 helps get him into the post-season.
Chris Kirk is #196. He needs a top 3 more than likely to keep playing this season.
The good news is that all are still mathematically alive. As you can see, there’s some work to do for many of these Classic City Canines unless they want to start the off-season early. And with
no very little college football still in the offing, might as well put some elbow grease into it. So let’s follow and see how much Red & Black we can paint the playoffs with. And as always...