Expert Picks: 2016 Valspar Championship

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 9, 2016, 3:37 pm

This week the 2016 fantasy golf season remains Florida, as 144 players tee it up at the Valspar Championship. Each week, a panel of experts will offer up their picks from four groups of players, based on Golf Channel's fantasy game, Fantasy Challenge. We will also keep track of their scores and standings. The panel includes: senior writers Rex Hoggard and Randall Mell; editorial director Jay Coffin; associate editor Will Gray; 'Morning Drive' host Gary Williams; host Charlie Rymer and defending fantasy champion Ryan Lavner.

Randall Mell

Group 1: Jordan Spieth: Time for the defending Masters champ to get some momentum going; no better place than Innisbrook, where he won last year. His short game will serve him well there again.

Group 2: Justin Thomas: How about a little Sunday duel with his buddy Spieth? Thomas showed good form with his third-place finish at Honda and put up a T-10 at Innisbrook last year.

Group 3: Sean O'Hair: Made it all the way into a playoff with Spieth and Patrick Reed at Innisbrook last year before watching Spieth take the trophy. Could be rounding into something big again this week, tied for 14th at Honda.

Group 4: Vijay Singh: At 53, Singh made a run  at the Honda Classic two weeks ago, tying for sixth. He was T-10 at Innisbrook last year and won there a dozen years ago.

Rex Hoggard

Group 1: Danny Willett: The fear is that the Englishman will be distracted by the impending birth of his first child in the next few weeks, but he's been impressive this season with a tie for third last week at Doral and a victory at the Dubai Desert Classic.

Group 2: Harris English: He didn't putt well last week at Doral and still finished 10th. If his putter comes around, this could be a big week for English.

Group 3: Kevin Streelman: The former champion at Innisbrook has been solid this season, with a third-place showing at Torrey Pines and a tie for 17th in his last start at Pebble Beach.

Group 4: Vijay Singh: Say this about hte reluctant Champions Tour player, he still will not be outworked and his play two weeks ago at the Honda Classic (T-6) shows he can still compete at the highest level.

Nick Menta

Group 1: Jordan Spieth: The world No. 1 hasn’t looked like his world-beating self since returning from his international tour earlier this year. Last week’s effort at Doral wasn’t inspiring, but expect Spieth to draw on the good vibes from last year’s victory, which propelled him to two major titles and the FedEx Cup.

Group 2: Kevin Na: Only Spieth owns a better cumulative score to par at Innisbrook in the last three years. Na was runner-up in 2014 and tied for 10th last year. Pull the trigger.

Group 3: K.J. Choi: The 45-year-old has won this event twice and showed at Torrey Pines, under terrible conditions, that he still has what it takes to contend.

Group 4: Colt Knost: Knost has yet to miss the cut in 10 starts this season. In three of his last four starts, he’s finished T-26 or better.

Getty Images

Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.

Getty Images

Rose leads Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose completed the final two holes of his second round early Saturday for a 3-under 69 and a one-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose, who had a first-round 62, was among a quarter of the field forced off the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course after weather delays on Friday.

The Englishman, who bogeyed his last hole, had a two-round total of 13-under 131.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who completed his 64 on Friday, was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters. He has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.

Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'

President at the Presidents Cup

Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump

Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73

Cart on the green

Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green

Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open

Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National

Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open

Trump golf properties


Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers

Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover

Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up

Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm