My golf bracket did about the same as my basketball bracket. The news wasn’t great coming out of Austin’s Dell Match Play, but when does anything good come out of Austin?
Sepp Straka lost all 3 matches, but did get $67,500 for that effort.
Chris Kirk and Keith Mitchell both had 0-2-1 records, which means a tie for 52nd place and $74,857.
Harris English, Kevin Kisner, and Davis Thompson all tallied 1-2 records. That was good for a T31 position and a hearty $113,762 each, just to get a jump on the weekend.
And Brian Harman and Russell Henley did go 2-1 in their groups, but did not advance to the knockout stage. Thus their T17 finish, and $219,909.
The Tour stays in Texas for one more week before a certain little ol’ golf gathering in Georgia.
Tournament: Valero Texas Open, March 30-April 2, 2023.
Course: TPC San Antonio (Oaks Course). 7,435 yards, par 72. Located on the northern outskirts of San Antonio, TX.
Purse: $8,900,000 in total, $1,416,000 to the winner.
Defending Champ: J.J. Spaun. The San Diego State product (Aztecs!) broke through for his first Tour win last season, ending up with a 2 stroke victory over Matt Jones and yellow jacket Matt Kuchar.
Fun Fact: When you win the Arnold Palmer Invitational, you get a red cardigan for the trophy ceremony. If you capture Hilton Head, a tartan jacket. And of course in Augusta, everyone tries to don the green jacket. Here in San Antonio, you get cowboy boots. I mean really people... that’s the best you could do?
TV Times: Thursday-Friday, 4 p.m.-7 p.m. ET (Golf Channel), Saturday, 1 p.m.-3:30 p.m. (Golf Channel), 3:30-6 p.m. (NBC). Sunday, 1 p.m.-2:30 p.m. (Golf Channel), 2:30 p.m.-6 p.m. (NBC). And per usual, ESPN+ has plenty of streaming options.
‘Dawgs in the Field: 5. Chris Kirk, Greyson Sigg, Sepp Straka, Davis Thompson, Brendon Todd.
The winner this week will get a Master invitation if not already qualified. So this tournament gets a tiny bit more juice that it would normally. There are players who legitimately are playing the Valero solely for that chance. And that chance is probably top of mind for Sigg, Thompson, and Todd. Straka and Kirk are already qualified for Augusta and have their invites in hand.
The Match Play was last week, and most of the players who made it to the weekend have played plenty of golf (the final four played 7 matches in 5 days), so you’ll see some guys having a rest instead of playing this week. And if you’re already in the Masters, you don’t want to travel west to Texas to turn around and get back to Augusta so quickly. The result is the 144 man field has only one player in the world top 20.
So there’s lots of golf on TV this weekend: the ANWA final Saturday at Augusta National, the Drive, Chip & Putt finals Sunday at Augusta National, and this Valero Texas Open. I hope you have a chance to catch some of the coverage. And as always...