None of the Presidents Men

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 19, 2005, 4:00 pm
2005 Valero Texas OpenFor proof that the PGA Tour isnt just about Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh and the rest of the Big Whatever, just look towards the Valero Texas Open.
 
While the tour showcases one of its two premiere events this week in the Presidents Cup (the other being The Players Championship), it will also contest a full-field tournament in San Antonio, Texas.
 
Chad Campbell
Chad Campbell is trying to win on the PGA Tour for the third straight year.
Some say this is the tour competing with itself; others say its the tour providing the bulk of its membership an appropriate opportunity to play.
 
Either way, the Texas Open once again falls on the same week as a significant international team competition. Its the fourth time in the last seven years that this event has been played simultaneously with either the Ryder Cup or Presidents Cup ' and the third time in the last four years.
 
Last year, Chad Campbell and Chris Riley represented the United States in the Ryder Cup. Now theyre each playing as individuals, while many of their former teammates take on the Internationals in Lake Manassas, Va.
 
Its been a long and frustrating season for both men.
 
Campbell nearly claimed an unofficial title at the rain-reduced Nissan Open, when he lost to Adam Scott in a sudden-death playoff after the tournament was called after 36 holes.
 
But thats as close as hes come to earning a title.
 
Campbell has only four top-10s on the year ' and only one since March. His world ranking has dropped 20 places from this time a year ago. Those are disappointing numbers for a man considered one of the top young American talents.
 
But not as disappointing as the numbers put up by Riley.
 
Rileys future looked as positive as his attitude when he earned his way onto the U.S. Ryder Cup team based on his performance at the 2004 PGA Championship.
 
Those smiles, however, havent been as plentiful in 05. Things seemed to take a turn for the worse when Riley asked out of the afternoon foursomes on Day 2 of the Ryder Cup, citing fatigue.
 
Critics fired plenty of bullets and, judging by his results this season, some seem to have found their mark.
 
Riley has only one top-25 finish, resides well outside the top 150 in earnings, and has fallen outside the top 125 in the world rankings.
 
One of these two players will turnaround their season this week. Unfortunately for Riley, it wont be him.
 
Five for the Title:
 
Chad Campbell
This is as good a place as any for the native Texan to earn his first win of the season. The Resort Course at LaCantera is a par-70, measuring 6,881 yards. Length is not a huge factor, but accuracy is ' and Campbell is accurate with his irons. A year ago, six players who finished inside the top 10 in greens hit in regulation also finished in the top 10 in the tournament, including winner Bart Bryant, who led the field in G.I.R. Campbell ranks inside the top 20 on tour in G.I.R.
 
Ben Crane
Ben Crane has back-to-back top-10 finishes in his last two starts.
Ben Crane
When theres no overwhelming favorite in an event, then its best to ride the hot hand. After a minor letdown following his second career tour victory at the U.S. Bank Championship in July, Crane has returned to form over the last two weeks. He tied for second at the Bell Canadian Open and then finished third in last weeks 84 Lumber Classic. Crane has played this event three times before, with his best finish coming in a tie for 17th in 2003.
 
Bart Bryant
Bryant played his first full season on tour in 1991. Thirteen years later he earned his first tour win. Bryant, who was born in Gatesville, Texas, took command of the tournament with a course record 10-under 60 in the third round. That gave him a three-stroke lead, which proved to be his margin of victory following a final-round 67. Proving that victory wasnt a fluke, Bryant added to his trophy collection this year with an impressive win at the Memorial Tournament. He will be trying to become the first repeat winner in this event since Arnold Palmer won three-in-a-row from 1960-62.
 
J.J. Henry
Henry hasnt fared as well as Crane over the last few weeks, but he does have a solid track record in this event. The Texas Christian alum was runner-up in 2001 and then tied for fifth last year. He placed well a year ago because he was second in the field in G.I.R. In his fifth full season on tour, Henry is still in search of his first career victory.
 
Corey Pavin
Each of the last three Texas Open champions has been in his 40s. Thats good news for Pavin. More good news: power, as stated before, is not an issue this week. None of the players in the field who ranked in the top 10 in driving distance a year ago finished in the top 10 in the tournament. Pavin, who ranks outside the top 200 in driving distance, finished eighth in his most recent start at the Buick Championship. He won this event in 1988 and has five top-10s in 16 career starts.
 
Playing Out the Front Nine
 
Four more to keep an eye on
 
*Tim Herron, who won this event in 1997. Herron earned his first top-10 since March in last weeks 84 Lumber Classic, finishing fourth.
 
*Ryan Moore, who is trying to earn his card for 2006. Moore, thanks to his tie for second in Canada, has already earned unlimited sponsors exemptions for the remainder of the year. He now needs just over $110,000 more to secure full exempt status for next season.
 
*Bob Estes, who won this event in 1994. The former Texas Longhorn has five career top-10s here and tied for 17th a year ago.
 
*Ted Purdy, who tied for fifth last year. Purdy picked up his maiden tour title at this years Byron Nelson Championship. Hes looking for his first top-10 since then.
 
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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

    Getty Images

    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.”

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    After 36, new Open favorite is ... Fleetwood

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 7:49 pm

    With a handful of the pre-championship favorites exiting early, there is a new odds-on leader entering the third round of The Open at Carnoustie.

    While Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner share the 36-hole lead, it's England's Tommy Fleetwood who leads the betting pack at 11/2. Fleetwood begins the third round one shot off the lead.

    Click here for the leaderboard and take a look below at the odds, courtesy Jeff Sherman at golfodds.com.

    Tommy Fleetwood: 11/2

    Zach Johnson: 13/2

    Rory McIlroy: 7/1

    Jordan Spieth: 8/1

    Rickie Fowler: 9/1

    Kevin Kisner: 12/1

    Xander Schauffele: 16/1

    Tony Finau: 16/1

    Matt Kuchar: 18/1

    Pat Perez: 25/1

    Brooks Koepka: 25/1

    Erik van Rooyen: 50/1

    Alex Noren: 50/1

    Tiger Woods: 50/1

    Thorbjorn Olesen: 60/1

    Danny Willett: 60/1

    Francesco Molinari: 60/1