Power Rankings: 2016 John Deere Classic

By Will GrayAugust 9, 2016, 1:15 pm

The 2016 fantasy golf season rolls right along, as the PGA Tour heads to Illinois this week for the John Deere Classic. A field of 144 players will tackle TPC Deere Run, where the winner will receive a spot in the 2017 Masters.

Be sure to join the Golf Channel Fantasy Challenge to test yourself against our panel of experts, including defending champion Ryan Lavner. Click here for full fantasy assistance, including stats and picks.

Jordan Spieth won this event last year in a playoff over Tom Gillis but will not defend his title. Here are 10 players to watch in Moline:

1. Zach Johnson: Johnson is the highest-ranked player in this week's field and a clear favorite given his track record, which includes six finishes of T-3 or better at TPC Deere Run since 2009 highlighted by his win in 2012.

2. Steve Stricker: Stricker is the other player besides Johnson who has capitalized on this event, notably winning it three straight times from 2009-2011. As his fourth-place showing at Royal Troon indicates, at age 49 Stricker is still able to compete on an elite level.

3. Jon Rahm: Rahm continued his run toward a full card last week at the Travelers, where he contended early before finishing T-25. With fewer big names in the field, Rahm could win his way to PGA Tour status just as Spieth did at this event in 2013.

4. Daniel Summerhays: Summerhays booked his ticket to the Masters in surprising fashion at Baltusrol, and he followed with a T-11 finish last week. He has finished T-13 or better at the Deere each of the last three years, highlighted by a T-4 finish in 2013.

5. Kevin Na: Na has only made one appearance at this event since 2008, but it came two years ago when he finished T-13. He is the only other player besides Johnson among the OWGR top 50 in this week's field and has finished T-27 or better in each of his last four starts overall.

6. Ryan Moore: Moore played well last week at one of his favorite stops, finishing T-17 at Travelers, and this is another of his more successful stops. Moore has finished T-24 or better each of the last four years at this event, including a pair of top-10 results.

7. Jerry Kelly: After a surprising runner-up last week, don't expect Kelly to slow down. The Wisconsin native thrives in the Quad Cities, with a T-4 finish in 2013 followed by a third-place showing in 2014. Kelly's carfor next season is now secure thanks to his Travelers finish, but he may look to do one spot better this week.

8. Robert Streb: Streb stopped a mini-drought with his top-10 finish at the PGA Championship, and his consistent game has paid dividends at TPC Deere Run where he has finished inside the top 40 in each of his three trips, highlighted by a T-14 finish last year.

9. Wesley Bryan: After earning a battlefield promotion, Bryan will be looking to make the most of his two "bonus starts." That run begins this week in Illinois, where Bryan will look to maintain his momentum one week after winning his third Web.com Tour event of the year.

10. Robert Garrigus: The veteran finished T-5 last week in Connecticut, his fourth top-11 finish in his last eight starts of a resurgent season. In six trips to Moline since 2009, Garrigus has cracked the top 25 three times.

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Watch that time Tiger throttled Ames, 9 and 8

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 20, 2018, 4:54 pm

Nine and eight. Three words that live in golf lore. Just say them and any golf fan can tell you what they mean.

In the 2006 WGC-Match Play, Tiger Woods faced Stephen Ames in the opening round. Ames, when asked prior to the event about his chance of winning, infamously said, "Anything can happen, especially where he's hitting it."

What happened on Wednesday, Feb. 22 at La Coasta Resort & Spa, was the most lopsided result in tournament history: 9 and 8 Check out the highlights below:

After his win, Woods was asked if Ames' comment had motivated him. Woods replied, "9 and 8."

Woods eventually lost, 1 up, to Chad Campbell in the third round. He then won his next start at Doral and went on to finish the season with six consecutive Tour wins, including The Open and PGA. He also won his first start in 2007 to make it seven consecutive Tour titles.

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Schedule change, caddie change for Casey at Match Play

By Rex HoggardMarch 20, 2018, 4:12 pm

AUSTIN, Texas – Paul Casey originally planned to skip the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, opting for two weeks off before the Masters.

Those plans changed when he removed the Arnold Palmer Invitational from his schedule and returned home to England last week to attend the funeral of a family friend. That adjustment also prompted a caddie change this week, with Scott Vail stepping in for the Englishman’s normal caddie, John McLaren.

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“We looked at tickets and it just didn't make sense for Johnny to fly back. We try and base our schedule around playing the best golf possible, but also having quality family time,” Casey said on Tuesday at Austin Country Club. “For Johnny to break up a nice three-week break with his family, there was no point to ruining that.”

This isn’t the first time Casey, who won the Valspar Championship two weeks ago, has needed a replacement caddie. At last year’s Travelers Championship, McLaren took a similar break and was replaced on the bag by Shannon Wallace. Although it’s not uncommon for caddies to take a week off, McLaren does have one stipulation.

“The only rule we have is that if Johnny is not going to work, he picks my caddie. So he picked the caddie,” said Casey, who is 20-12-1 in 12 starts at the Match Play and has advanced to the championship match twice.

Westchester Country Club hosted the 2015 KPMG Women's PGA Championship. (Getty) Getty Images

Westchester selected to host 2021 U.S. Women's Am

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 20, 2018, 3:20 pm

The USGA announced Tuesday that Westchester Country Club in Rye, N.Y., has been selected to host the 2021 U.S. Women's Amateur. The tournament will be held Aug. 2-8, 2021.

The club's West Course first hosted the event in 1923, and it boasts a storied history of professional tournaments as well. The PGA Tour hosted the Westchester Classic, later known as the Buick Classic and eventually The Barclays, at Westchester from 1967-2007, including the first-ever FedExCup playoff event, won by Steve Stricker in 2007.

The course was also the site of the 2011 Constellation Energy Senior Players Championship, won by Fred Couples, and the 2015 KPMG Women's PGA Championship, won by Inbee Park.

"The USGA is thrilled to bring the U.S. Women's Amateur to Westchester Country Club for the second time," Stuart Francis, USGA championship committee chairman, said in a release. "One of the USGA's three oldest championships, the Women's Amateur consistently identifies the world's top female players, and we are confident Westchester will provide the ultimate test for the championship's 121st playing."

First held in 1895, the Women's Amateur is open to players with a USGA handicap index not exceeding 5.4. Sophia Schubert won last year's event at San Diego Country Club, while this year's tournament will be held at The Golf Club of Tennessee in Kingston Springs.

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Stock Watch: Park rises again, under the radar

By Ryan LavnerMarch 20, 2018, 12:48 pm

Each week on GolfChannel.com, we’ll examine which players’ stocks and trends are rising and falling in the world of golf.


Rory (+10%): The massive drives, the fist pumps, the unmistakable strut – McIlroy finally found the spark that he needed to play confident, aggressive golf. Bring on Augusta and his shot at history.

Tiger (+7%): It was another forgettable end to a final round, but let’s not lose sight of the big picture: Five events into his comeback, Woods has now carded 10 consecutive rounds of par or better – all on tough tracks – and can be viewed as a legitimate threat at the Masters. Remarkable, really.

Inbee Park (+5%): Fighting injuries and questioning whether she should retire, the Queen ‘Bee routed a top field in just her second start back. Stud.

Bryson (+3%): When The Machine operates properly, he’s one of the best ball-strikers in the world. Yes, he’s still painfully slow, but there’s no denying his talent – his runner-up against a star-studded field should help him tremendously.

Laura Davies (+2%): Fifty-four years old and nursing an Achilles injury, she turned back the clock with one of the coolest performances of the young season, on any tour. She’s still got tons of game.


Henrik Stenson (-1%): Maybe he’s just destined to go winless at Bay Hill. In the past four years, he’s had three excellent chances to win there and came away empty-handed each time.

Rickie (-2%): Hanging near the lead, Fowler closed his third round bogey-double, then shot 74 in the final round to drop out of the top 10. Sigh.  

P-Reed (-3%): His whiny protest to a rules official about a free drop – “I guess my name needs to be Jordan Spieth” – got even juicier when the Ryder Cup partners were drawn in the same group at the Match Play. Get your popcorn ready.

Ted Potter Jr. (-5%): His impressive victory at Pebble Beach over DJ, Phil and J-Day is looking more and more like a fluke each week. He’s now missed four consecutive cuts.

Fan behavior (-7%): Another week, another player complaining about increasingly hostile spectators. The Tour has (frustratingly) remained quiet on the issue, but the tipping point will come when one of these dopes affects the outcome on the 72nd hole.