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.

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Storms halt Barbasol before Lincicome tees off

By Associated PressJuly 20, 2018, 11:29 pm

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - Brittany Lincicome will have to wait until the weekend to resume her bid to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

Overnight storms delayed the start of the second round Friday in the Barbasol Championship, and an afternoon thunderstorm suspended competition for good. The round will resume Saturday morning with much of the field still to play.

The second stoppage at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came 20 minutes before Lincicome's scheduled tee time.

Lincicome was near the bottom of the field after opening with a 6-over 78 on Thursday. The first LPGA player since Michelle Wie in 2008 to start a PGA Tour event, she needs a huge rebound to join Babe Zaharias (1945) as the only female players to make the cut.

Troy Merritt had the clubhouse lead at 15 under, following an opening 62 with a 67.

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Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson

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Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

“There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

“I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

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Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

“I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

“It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

“I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”