Preview: Charles Schwab Challenge

Colonial Country Club will host a field of 121 as they get after a purse of $7.5 million with the winner getting $1.35 million, 500 FedExCup points annnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd

Charles Schwab Challenge

Colonial Country Club

Fort Worth, Texas

  
Yards (per official scorecard):7,209
Par:70 (35-35)
Greens:A-4 Bentgrass.
Stimpmeter:12 feet and up.
Rough:Bermuda blend hovering around three inches.
Bunkers/Water Hazards84/4; water in play on six holes.
Architects:John Bredemus & Perry Maxwell (1936).
Course Record:61; Kevin Na (2018) last to post.
Tournament Record:21-under, 259; Zach Johnson (2010).
2021 Purse:$7.5 million; $1.35 million and 500 FedExCup points (winner).

Notes:

  • Field of 121.
  • Top 65 and ties play the weekend.
  • Colonial Country Club has been the only host since the inception of the event in 1946.
  • Invitational field.

2020-2021 Season Winners

*- First-time winner

**- First-time winner AND rookie winner

EventWinner
Safeway OpenStewart Cink
120th United States OpenBryson DeChambeau
Corales Punta Cana ChampionshipHudson Swafford
Sanderson Farms ChampionshipSergio Garcia
Shriners Hospitals for ChildrenMartin Laird (playoff)
CJ CUP @ SHADOW CREEKJason Kokrak*
ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIPPatrick Cantlay
Bermuda ChampionshipBrian Gay
Vivint Houston OpenCarlos Oritz*
84th Masters TournamentDustin Johnson
The RSM ClassicRobert Streb
Mayakoba Golf ClassicViktor Hovland
Sentry TOCHarris English
Sony Open in HawaiiKevin Na
The American ExpressSi Woo Kim
Farmers Insurance OpenPatrick Reed
Waste Management Phoenix OpenBrooks Koepka
AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-AmDaniel Berger
The Genesis InvitationalMax Homa
WGC – Championship at The ConcessionCollin Morikawa
Arnold Palmer InvitationalBryson DeChambeau (2)
THE PLAYERS ChampionshipJustin Thomas
The Honda ClassicMatt Jones
WGC- Match PlayBilly Horschel
Corales PuntacanaJoel Dahmen*
Valero Texas OpenJordan Spieth
85th Masters TournamentHideki Matsuyama
RBC HeritageStewart Cink (2)
Zurich Classic of New OrleansCameron Smith/Marc Leishman
Valspar ChampionshipSam Burns
Wells Fargo ChampionshipRory McIlroy
AT&T Byron NelsonKH Lee
103rd PGA ChampionshipPhil Mickelson

Check out HORSES FOR COURSES for more details and angles for this week.

Previous Winners

(*Playoff)

YearWinnerScoreNotes
2020Daniel Berger*-15Closed with 66 and a birdie at the last to force a playoff with Collin Morikawa.
2019Kevin Na-13Posted ANOTHER 62 (Round 2) before going on to beat Tony Finau by four shots.
2018Justin Rose-20Led by four after 54 holes and won by three as he just missed the tournament scoring record.
2017Kevin Kisner-10Closing 66 wiped out a three shot deficit after 54 holes; won by one.
2016Jordan Spieth-1765-65 weekend; won by three.
2015Chris Kirk-1266 leapt over 54-hole leader Kevin Na; defeated Spieth and Snedeker by a shot.

Facts and Figures:

Lowest Rounds 2020: (entered this week)63; Justin Rose, Harold Varner III and Patrick Reed.  
Defending Champion(s):Ben Hogan.
Multiple Champion(s) Entered:Phil Mickelson (2), Zach Johnson (2).
First Time – TOUR:Only player this century is Sergio Garcia (2001).
First Time – Event:Only player this century is Sergio Garcia (2001).
Odd Fact:Longest running event on TOUR at the same venue.
Odd Fact II:Justin Rose became just the fifth international winner this century in 2018.

Quick Thoughts

Course form will factor this week because they don’t mess with one of the great, classic tracks.

No yardage changes in six years.

Mother Nature will again have her say this week with chances of storms Friday into Saturday morning. Hottest day is 88 to open the event and then it might not get to 80 the final three days. She’s already left her mark as Fort Worth has collected almost four inches in the last seven days. #TargetPractice. #LawnDarts.

I don’t believe in “schedule” bias. If you signed up to play this week, you’ve know about it for probably close to 9 months now. Guys just don’t pick up events after the week of major championships. That’s in the books so they can arrange everything else around it.

I also don’t believe in bad major = bad following week. Major championship golf is a completely different operation. The GOOD that comes from it is fantastic because it reinforces the belief/confidence that IT IS WORKING. Missing the cut and going home isn’t going to ruin DJ, Schauffele or JT either. It SHOULD make them aware of what isn’t clicking. Getting back out to fix it is the chase they all love.

Quick! How many Texans have won Colonial?

Since 1990, just as many as from Kentucky, two.

Jordan Spieth and Ben Crenshaw. Kenny Perry and Steve Flesch are the Kentucky lads.

I don’t think the local angle is wrong but it’s definitely not a requirement.

Small greens favor ball-strikers this week. Great putters will rake here as well because the A-4 Bentgrass is perfect. Colonial is one of the few places that swallows up PLENTY of putts in the 15-25 foot range according to ShotLink.

The field this year has calmed down because it’s not the first event back after a pandemic. 101 players from 148 in 2020 had a win under their belt.

The only player to win all four events in Texas (Houston, Valero, Byron Nelson and Colonial) is Adam Scott.

Hogan is the only player, and still will be, to win the Nelson-Colonial double in the same year. KH Lee, winner of the Nelson, has WD.

The last person to go wire-to-wire here will be on the 17th tower this week for CBS, Ian Baker-Finch.

Last Week: 103rd PGA Championship

Rory McIlroy (+1100): Checks the boxes of form and function after his 2012 win and victory last time out at Quail Hollow. We’re going to have to stomach a price this week to find a winner. Hard not to start here. T49 after butchering the Par-5 holes and not making anything. Regressed.

Jon Rahm (+1400): First one is always the hardest but there aren’t any holes in his bag. Embraces Dye’s challenges and should be able to handle the elements. Top 10. Let’s cash, T8.

Justin Thomas (+1600): History doesn’t help here as there are not many who have won two big-time events in the same season. Had two great rounds at TPC Sawgrass but not much after. And not much here with 75-75 MC.

Jordan Spieth (+1600): Would complete the career grand slam with a victory. With six of his last eight events cashing top 10 checks, it wouldn’t surprise.  Won’t have to worry about busting rust after contending last week in Dallas. Buying top 10 and top 20. T30. Had the round of the day on Saturday, one of the toughest days, with 68. Turned around on Sunday, the easiest day, and shot 74. Loss. Loss.

Dustin Johnson (+1600): If it’s the biggest and the baddest, he has to be in the conversation. Throw in some wind and a home game and I bet his knee feels better already. Top 10. His knee might have been fine but he made ONE BIRDIE in 36 holes. UNO. L.

Bryson DeChambeau (+1800): I’m interested to see how this plane flies when the wind blows. All of the calculations that must go into to every shot, especially on a Dye layout, will be must-see TV/Stream/Radio. Curious bystander and that’s all for me. What going to happen at Royal Lytham & St Annes when the wind blows all four days? My money will not care! T38.

Viktor Hovland (+2000): Saw Morikawa do it last time around so he won’t be too bothered. Won on Paspalum in Mexico late last year. T3 his last two on two very difficult courses. T9 at THE PLAYERS. Top 10. Top 20. Two more L’s as his 75-75 middle wiped out 69 to open and 71 to close.

Xander Schauffele (+2200): Full bag, plenty of major big finishes but he admitted the breeze will be something that he’s not entirely familiar with heading into the week. He joked in his presser than 10 mph at home in San Diego was “windy”.  Or was he joking. 73-77 MC. Filing this for other windy days…

Daniel Berger (+3000): 12 of his last 27 events worldwide have cashed top 10 tickets and 19 have hit the top 25. Cashed in 13 of 16 majors. Top 10. Top 20. Fantastic rally from 79 to 69 to make the cut but emptied the tank to get to that point. L L.

33-1 or worse

Collin Morikawa (+3300): Still hasn’t defended a title on the course he’s won it…I like the price more than anything but won’t reach. T8 and didn’t make anything. Fantastic player.

Patrick Reed (+3500): Skinny win ticket and across (top 10 and top 20) as I’ll rely on his short game to keep within reach of the leaders. T17 because he had the best closing 36 hole total of the week (69-70). L L W with T17.

Tony Finau (+4000): Major machine. Across as well. Just one of four to post two rounds in the red on the weekend for T8. L W W

Hideki Matsuyama (+4000): That number should tell you everything you need to know. Pass. Made a few sweat as he was in a few of the lead after 36 holes. T23.

Cameron Smith (+4000): Made the cut in 12 of his last 13 majors. Best PGA is T25 Whistling Straits after T4 at Chambers Bay for the 2015 US Open. Last five stroke play events all T17 or better. Across the board. L L L. Swung. Missed. T59.

Abraham Ancer (+4500): Top 20, take it and run. T8. Ran. W.

Marc Leishman (+5500): Aussie bias from me is huge this week. Blow, wind, blow! Top 10 and Top 20. Should have had SOUTH AFRICAN BIAS. Aussies crashed and burned unless you had Jason Scrivener as top Australian. MC for Leish and two more L L for me.

Keegan Bradley (+7000): Top 10 and Top 20. T17 splitsville.

Shane Lowry (+7000): Top 20: T4, bang. W.

$2 Long Shots – Use ’em wherever!

Charl Schwartzel (+10000) – MC

Matt Wallace (+10000) – Top 10 and Top 20 – T55 L L

Bubba Watson (+10000) – 77-80 finish!

Si Woo Kim (+11000) – MC

Emiliano Grillo (+14000) – T38

Charley Hoffman (+14000) – T17

Alex Noren (+15000) – T55

Carlos Ortiz (+20000) – T55

Joel Dahmen (+30000) – T55

This Week – Charles Schwab Challenge

Jordan Spieth (+1000): His record and current form suggests nothing but first choice this week. He knows the place inside and out and people forget it’s the Byron Nelson where he struggles. He’s not struggling anywhere and is the man to beat this week.

Justin Thomas (+1400): Couple of days off last weekend to recalibrate should help. Played three great rounds before limping home last year with 71. I’ll save him for the emotional return to Memorial, if he’s entered, to honor his late grandfather.

Collin Morikawa (+1400): Some price this but he had no fear last June as he should have won the event.Putter let him down the last two holes but his ball-striking was fantastic. Not much value here but I expect another top 10.

Daniel Berger (+2000): He’s defended before so he won’t be bothered by the extra duties. Before last year, he had zero success at CCC so I’m interested to see if last year was pent up juice or what. I’m passing.

Abraham Ancer (+2000): The first win is right around the corner. History is against him clearly this week but he’s hitting it great. Across the board, win, Top 10, Top 20.

Tony Finau (+2200): Never missed in five tries, runner up 2019. Top 10, Top 20.

Patrick Reed (+2200): Texas man closed crazily last weekend so I’d expect a carryover. Top 10 and Top 20 as well.

Will Zalatoris (+2500): Another week at home after T17 at TPC Craig Ranch and ANOTHER top 10 major finish hahahaha. Take the top 20 money and run.

Corey Conners (+2500): Ball-striking playing field will level out if the place is soaked so that’s not to his advantage either.

Scottie Scheffler (+2500): Show me this week and I won’t hesitate down the road.

Joaquin Niemann (+2500): T32 or better in three starts here. Top 20.

Justin Rose (+2800): Inspired by Phil? Perfect landing spot after T8 last weekend as he’s posted 14-under and 20-under in two of his last three visits from 2018. Across the board.

Sungjae Im (+2800): The Korean double in DFW??? T10 on debut last year in a deep field. It’s not that easy, is it?

Brian Harman (+3000): Last seven here are all T31 or better. Top 20 and run.

33-1 or worse

Charley Hoffman (+4000): Playing so well and rakes in the state of Texas. Fits the veteran profile for a winner here as well. Top 10. Top 20.

Gary Woodland (+4500): One back after 54 holes last year. Hasn’t put to back-to-back weeks together on TOUR in a bit. Pass.

Emiliano Grillo (+5000): Small greens at Harbour Town didn’t bother him as he finished T2 to Cink. Rattled off T23-3rd-T19 before MC in the return last year. Top 10. Top 20.

Matt Kuchar (+6000): No distractions like Palmer this week! Top 10. Top 20.

Ryan Palmer (+6600): You know why! Top 10 or bust.

Harold Varner III (+8000): 36 hole leader last year and T2 at Harbour Town on tiny greens. Top 20.

Russell Knox (+9000): Nothing worse than T24 here and cashed three straight on TOUR. Top 20.

Peter Uihlein (+12500): Top 10. Top 20.

Rory Sabbatini (+12500): Top 10. Top 20. T20 or better in his last five here.

Troy Merritt (+12500): Top 10. Of his last three, he’s cashed twice in the top 10.

Joseph Bramlett (+20000): Season best T7 TPC Craig Ranch on Bent. Do it again. Top 10. Top 20.

Danny Lee (+25000): Dallas Danny Lee has sub 70 average here and cashed seven straight before the pandemic edition.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out through Twitter (@mikeglasscott) or email me: mikeglasscott@gmail.com.

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