With 18 holes to go, Keegan Bradley appears in position for his second win at TPC Four Seasons in the last three years. Here's what You Oughta Know heading into the final round of the HP Byron Nelson Championship, where Bradley clings to a one-shot lead after setting the course record during Thursday's opening round:
• A native of Vermont, Bradley is currently growing a 'playoff beard' to support the Boston Bruins, who are currently pitted against the New York Rangers in the second round of the NHL's Eastern Conference playoffs. 'I was thinking about the Bruins all day today,' Bradley said on Thursday after shooting a course-record 60. The beard has apparently created some positive momentum for Bradley, who will look to become the first player to win wire-to-wire at this event since Tom Watson pulled off the feat in 1980.
• After winning the PGA Tour's Rookie of the Year honor in 2012, John Huh has struggled somewhat in his sophomore season. Huh, who won last year at the Mayakoba Classic, hasn't notched a top-10 finish in nearly a year (T-5 at the 2012 Crowne Plaza Invitational) and has cracked the top 20 just twice in 14 starts this season. He enters the final round at TPC Four Seasons in position to buck both trends, as Huh currently sits among a tie for fifth at 8 under, just five shots behind Bradley.
• When he lost in a playoff at last year's Tampa Bay Championship, Sang-Moon Bae appeard ready to become a rising star on the PGA Tour. Instead, the South Korean struggled mightily through the balance of his 2012 campaign, with just one top-30 finish in 17 starts following his runner-up showing at Innisbrook. Outside of a tie for eighth this year at the Northern Trust Open, Bae has not fared much better in 2013, as his finish at Riviera remains his only top-25 result in 13 starts this year. He will tee it up Sunday alongside Bradley in the final group, though, just one shot off the lead and ready to rebound from more than a year of mediocre play.
• Like Bae, Gary Woodland has struggled to regain the highs he once achieved at Innisbrook. The former University of Kansas standout, who won in Tampa in 2011, has battled several injury issues in the two years since his maiden victory, and his scores have faltered as a result. Woodland has made 34 starts since the beginning of the 2012 season but has notched just a single top-10 finish in that span, tying for ninth at the Frys.com Open last October. This week, though, he's put together three straight rounds in the 60s, the first time he's pulled off the feat since the first, second and third rounds at the Waste Management Phoenix Open earlier this season, where he finished tied for 16th after closing with a 1-under 70 on Sunday.
• Bradley seems in position to extend the dominance of American-born players this year on the PGA Tour, a prominent trend as the 2013 season approaches the halfway point. While 20 trophies have been handed out thus far this year, just three have gone to foreign-born players: Martin Laird (Valero Texas Open), Adam Scott (Masters) and Graeme McDowell (RBC Heritage). With six of the top eight names on the leaderboard through 54 holes bearing American flags, this appears to be a trend likely to continue Sunday at TPC Four Seasons.
• Should Bradley falter Sunday in Dallas, a pair of major champions are close behind, both looking to notch just their second respective victories in the U.S. Charl Schwartzel enters the final round at 8 under, tied for fifth and in search of his first PGA Tour win since claiming the Masters in 2011, while Martin Kaymer will start the fourth round at 6 under, tied for 10th and hoping to hoist a trophy in the U.S. for the first time since capturing the 2010 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits.