Punch Shot: Who will win the 2014 FedEx Cup?

By Golf Channel DigitalAugust 18, 2014, 2:00 pm

He's won his last three starts, including two majors and a a WGC event. So is Rory McIlroy the consensus pick to run through the playoffs and win the 2014 FedEx Cup? Our Golf Channel staff weighs in ahead of The Barclays:


We often hear players contend after a round that they played great but didn't get anything out of it.

Rickie Fowler could say that about his entire season. Not that top-five finishes in each of the four majors is "nothing," but his trophy case still holds just one career PGA Tour trophy.

That could change very soon.

Since its inception, the FedEx Cup has often had a karmic way of maybe not rewarding the year's best player, but allowing for a champion who is overdue to win something big.

The last part of that statement couldn't define Fowler any better. He'll enter this week's Barclays as the 16th-ranked player on the points list, but as we've found in recent years, that's hardly too much ground to overcome.

Fowler has played his best golf on tough venues under high-pressure situations this season. Continuing to do that could reap a $10 million prize very soon. 


The $10 million season-long jackpot of (largely) deferred cash and prizes will go to Rory McIlroy, but not for the reasons that have made the world No. 1 the betting favorite for the better part of two months.

That McIlroy cruises into the FedEx Cup playoffs as the regular-season points leader would make him an easy choice for this year’s season-long race. Despite the looming point reset, the Northern Irishman is the undisputed hottest player on the planet right now having won his last three starts.

But it’s McIlroy’s checkered history with the PGA Tour’s post-season party that gives him the advantage.

In short, karma owes the four-time major champion.

Back in 2012 the 25-year-old was fresh off a similarly dominant run when he entered the playoffs.

McIlroy finished tied for 24th at The Barclays, won the Deutsche Bank Championship and BMW Championship and closed out the season with a tie for 10th at the Tour Championship.

For all his hard work McIlroy finished second in the FedEx Cup race to Brandt Snedeker, the victim of the ultimate pencil whipping.

McIlroy should win the playoffs because he is the best player in the game at the moment. That the FedEx Cup math owes him a cosmic make-good, however, makes him a lock.


Rory McIlroy is a human landslide when he’s playing like this. You’ve just got to get out of the way. His confidence is rolling downhill again, building momentum, wrecking whatever’s in his path.

This is how McIlroy rolls. He wins in giant swaths, and with so many big FedEx Cup events left, don’t expect the landslide to bottom out until after the Ryder Cup and Race to Dubai.

Back in 2012, he made a late-season run like this, winning four times worldwide over four months. He has won his last three starts now, and he seems so much wiser for wear, with hard lessons learned making him capable of even a larger swath of wins.


Listen, we’ve been through this exercise before.

Rory McIlroy entered the FedEx Cup playoffs on top of his game after a major title back in 2012. He even added not one, but two playoff victories that season. Did he leave East Lake with the FedEx Cup? No, that one went to Brandt Snedeker.

While McIlroy is playing the best golf on the planet right now, the volatility of the points race means he’s far from a lock to take home the season-long trophy in four weeks. So don’t be surprised when Jim Furyk takes the FedEx Cup title for the second time.

I know, I know. Furyk isn’t exactly a closer, and he hasn’t won in close to four years. But at No. 5 in points he’s essentially a lock to make it to the Tour Championship, and there’s reason to think he’ll pick up a few good results along the way: he has three runner-ups this year, leads the Tour in scrambling, sits fifth in scoring average and hasn’t finished outside the top 15 since the Memorial.

Furyk knows what it takes to survive this gauntlet, and he’ll do it once again as the victory drought ends at East Lake, where he last lifted a trophy back in 2010.

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Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

“I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

“I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.

Masters victory

Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative

Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ

Green jacket tour

Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket

Man of the people

Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief

Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together

Ace at 17th at Sawgrass

Growing family

Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018

Departure from TaylorMade

Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade

Squashed beef with Paddy

Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'

Victory at Valderrama

Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm
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Montana parents can't watch kids play high school golf

By Grill Room TeamDecember 11, 2017, 9:47 pm

Well, this is a one new one.

According to a report from KTVQ in Montana, this line in the Montana State High School Association rule book all but forbids spectators from observing high school golf in that state:

“No spectators/fans are allowed on the course except for certain locations as designated by the tournament manager and club professional.”

Part of the issue, according to the report, is that most courses don't bother to designate those "certain locations" leaving parents unable to watch their kids compete.

“If you tell a parent that they can’t watch their kid play in the Thanksgiving Day football game, they would riot,” Chris Kelley, a high school golf parent, told KTVQ.

The report lists illegal outside coaching as one of the rule's chief motivations, but Montana State women's golf coach Brittany Basye doesn't quite buy that.

“I can go to a softball game and I can sit right behind the pitcher. I can make hand signals,” she is quoted in the report. “I can yell out names. I can do the same thing on a softball field that might affect that kid. Football games we can yell as loud as we want when someone is making a pass or a catch.”

The MHSA has argued that unlike other sports that are played in a confined area, the sprawling nature of a golf course would make it difficult to hire enough marshals to keep unruly spectators in check.

Meanwhile, there's a lawyer quoted in the report claiming this is some kind of civil rights issue.

Worth note, Montana is one of only two states that doesn't allow spectators on the course. The other state, Alaska, does not offer high school golf.