FedExCup 101: A guide to the PGA Tour playoffs

By Golf Channel DigitalAugust 21, 2017, 2:00 pm

Take a look at some answers to frequently asked questions about the FedExCup Playoffs:

Playoffs?! Playoffs?! Sorry, I can't hear that word without thinking of Jim Mora.

Don't worry about it. Everyone who's ever seen the video of Mora's classic rant has the same reaction. But let's get down to business. You want to know about the FedExCup Playoffs, don't you.


Yeah. Since when does golf have playoffs?

Since 2007.


OK, why does golf have playoffs?

To make the end of the season more interesting, not to mention more lucrative. MUCH more lucrative.


Yes, I want to know about the money, but first things first. How do the playoffs work?

The last four events of the season are playoff events. In order, they are the Northern Trust, the Dell Technologies Championship, the BMW Championship and the Tour Championship. You have to be in the top 125 of the FedExCup points list to qualify for the Northern Trust. After the Northern Trust is played, the top 100 advance to the Dell Technologies Championship, then the top 70 advance to the BMW Championship and finally the top 30 advance to the Tour Championship. No alternates are added to fields if players are unable to compete.


Which is where the real dough is, right?

Absolutely. The winner of the FedExCup - the season-long leader in points at the end of the Tour Championship - earns a $10 million bonus. And since the winner of the Tour Championship earns $1,530,000, if he is also the FedExCup winner, which he often is, that means a total haul of $11.53 million.


Is the FedExCup bonus a winner-take-all deal?

Not at all. There are also bonuses of $3 million for second in the final point standings, $2 million for third, $1.5 milion for fourth and $1 million for fifth, and so on.


These tournaments all have corporate names. Where are they played?

The Northern Trust will be played at the Glen Oaks Club in Old Westbury, N.Y. It's the tournament that used to be known as The Barclays. If you're really old school, it's the descendant of the old Westchester Classic. The Dell Technologies Championship is played at TPC Boston in Norton, Mass., and used to be known as the Deutsche Bank Championship. The BMW Championship is played at Conway Farms GC in Lake Forest, Ill. The tournament is the descendant of the old Western Open. Finally, the Tour Championship is played at East Lake in Atlanta, formerly the home course of Bobby Jones when it was known as the Atlanta Athletic Club.


You said players become eligible for the playoffs by earning FedExCup points during the regular season. How does that work?

FedExCup points are awarded for tournaments throughout the season, on a tier system. For example: A "regular" event pays 500 points for first place, with a sliding scale of lesser points for lower finishes. A World Golf Championships event pays 550 points for first. The four majors and The Players Championship pay 600 points for first. Once the playoffs start, the point totals increase, with first place paying 2,000 points. Players will carry over their points earned through the regular season and can add to the total throughout first three playoff events. Points are then reset for the finale to ensure that everyone in the field, mathmatically, has a chance to win. The top five in points can win the overall prize just by winning the Tour Championship.


OK, enough about points. Who has won the previous FedExCups?

Tiger Woods won the inaugural FedExCup in 2007. Vijay Singh won it in 2008 and Woods won again in 2009. After that it was Jim Furyk in 2010, Bill Haas in 2011, Brandt Snedeker in 2012, Henrik Stenson in 2013, Billy Horschel in 2014, Jordan Spieth in 2015 and Rory McIlroy in 2016.                                                                                               


Good list. Who's going to win this year?

If we knew, we'd be in Las Vegas right now, not here. We can tell you that going into the last pre-playoffs event, the Wyndham Championship, the top five are Hideki Matsuyama, Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth, Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler.                                               


Well, then, let's get these playoffs started.

Jim Mora couldn’t have said it better.

Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

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.

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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.