Preview: Valero Texas Open 2022

Thoughts on the big names, others and longshots.

via @PGATOUR

Valero Texas Open 2022

TPC San Antonio

Oaks Course

San Antonio, Texas

Tune up week for the Masters takes us to San Antonio as 22 of the field of 91 (and counting?!?) heading to ANGC tee it up this week in Hill Country.

Yards (per official scorecard):7,438
Par:72 (36-36)
Greens:Champion Bermuda; 6,400 square feet on average.
Stimpmeter:11.5 feet.
Rough:Bandera Bermuda with over-seeded Ryegrass and fescue at just over two inches.
Bunkers/Water Hazards:44/3 (Water in play on 3 holes).
Architect(s):Greg Norman (2010). Player Consultant: Sergio Garcia.
Purse:$8.6 million; $1.548 million winner plus 500 FedExCup points.
Defending Champion:Jordan Spieth (-18)
Repeat Champion(s) – EnteredNone.
Multiple Champion(s) – Entered:None.
72 Hole Tournament Record (since 2010):20-under 264; Corey Conners 2019.
Course Record:62; Trey Mullinax, 2018 (Round 3).
Fact of the Week:Longest running event in the same city on TOUR.
Fact of the Week II:Lowest three tournament winning scores have been posted in the last three events.
Fact of the Week III:Course sits 1,100 feet above sea level.

Notes:

  • Field of 144, stroke play.
  • Top 65 and ties play the final two rounds.
  • No event in 2020 due to COVID-19.
  • Course did not host the event previous to the 2010 editon.

2021-2022 Season Winners

EventWinner
Fortinet ChampionshipMax Homa
Sanderson Farms ChampionshipSam Burns
Shriners Children’s OpenSungjae Im
CJ CUP @ SUMMITRory McIlroy
ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIPHideki Matsuyama
Bermuda ChampionshipLucas Herbert (first TOUR win)
Mayakoba ChampionshipViktor Hovland
Hewlett Packard Houston OpenJason Kokrak
The RSM ClassicTalor Gooch (first TOUR win)
Sentry Tournament of ChampionsCameron Smith
Sony Open in HawaiiHideki Matsuyama (2)
The American ExpressHudson Swafford
Farmers Insurance OpenLuke List (first TOUR win)
AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-AmTom Hoge (first TOUR win)
WM Phoenix OpenScottie Scheffler (first TOUR win)
The Genesis InvitationalJoaquin Niemann
The Honda ClassicSepp Straka (first TOUR win)
Arnold Palmer InvitationalScottie Scheffler (2)
THE PLAYERS ChampionshipCameron Smith (2)
Valspar ChampionshipSam Burns (2)
Corales PuntacanaChad Ramey (first TOUR win)
WGC- Dell Match PlayScottie Scheffler (3)

Check out HORSES FOR COURSES for more details on those who play well here. The piece has been updated within the last month and has EXTRA DETAILS that I’m not going to make redundant below.

Event Winners:

Year/Player/Score * – PlayoffNotes
2021 Jordan Spieth (-18)  Held off perennial contender Charley Hoffman by two shots; first winner in four who didn’t pick up their first on TOUR.
2020 No EventCovid-19.
2019 Corey Conners (-20)Monday Qualifier came from one shot off the 54 hole lead in the final group to hold off Hoffman by two shots.
2018 Andrew Landry (-17)Texan beat Zach Johnson heads up in the final group to win for the first time on TOUR.
2017 Kevin Chappell (-12)Posted 68 from the final group and made his 54 hole lead stand up for his first win on TOUR.
2016 Charley Hoffman (-12)All time No. 1 on the money list at the Oaks Course started his reign of terror with his victory by a shot over Patrick Reed (not entered).

Last Time – WGC – Dell Match Play Championship

Let’s recap last week before diving in to this massive field!

Bracket busted like most! It’s not an event I take too seriously whether I have picked the winner or have been shut out of the final eight! Hope you had fun with it because that’s what it’s there for! Sorry Kis, some weeks it’s just a hobby!

This Week – Valero Texas Open

Greg Norman wasn’t the greatest putter so it’s simple what his design challenges will be: Reward those who take the least amount of shots to find overseeded Poa Trivialis greens!

He also was a beast on the Par-5 holes in his day and the Oaks Course reflects that angle as well.

Mother Nature will be involved as she gently pushes golf balls all over the property but the rough is just slightly over two inches. Greens are difficult to hit but they are not perched, encouraging recovery shots in a links-style fashion. Providing options to the players greenside with tightly mown areas also will flummox those who struggle with that part of the game.

Each week on TOUR there is a SHIT LOAD of reasons to play well and win and somebody is obviously going to do that this week. Jordan Spieth said the more he wins the better he feels and momentum is a real thing. I’d suggest his mates joining him this week before their trip down Magnolia Lane would agree. Anybody can stay home and practice.

If the winner is not in the field next week at the Masters, he will be if he picks up the boots and BIG CHECK at the end of 72 holes.

Kisner is right. This ain’t no hobby.

Thoughts on Chalk (My plays will be obvious)

Rory McIlroy (+800): As usual, no value. Sat out Match Play and Valspar so this will be a rust buster before attempting to pick up the career GRAND SLAM next week in Augusta. Solo second on debut and only trip in 2013.  Hasn’t been back since. You let me know why!

Jordan Spieth (+1600): Defending champion has showed us over the years that he plays well where he plays well and this week qualifies. He’s a different cat and looks at things a bit differently. His Augusta prep is Texas annually and has won here plus finished T3 and T2 in Houston so I won’t dismiss him this week.

Hideki Matsuyama (+2000): Last I heard he was 80%. Yeah, beware the injured golfer and all of that. I doubt he’s going to do ANYTHING that will disrupt his week in the spotlight at ANGC next week. He’s already pulled out of THE PLAYERS and Match Play. You do you.

Corey Conners (+2000): He not turning into the new Charley Hoffman here JUST yet but nobody has made more birdies over the last three editions either.  Can’t see why he wouldn’t be feeling anything but fantastic after taking third place last week. Super ball-striker in a big ball park makes all of the sense.

Abraham Ancer (+2200): San Antonio resident is my OAD so yeah.

Bryson DeChambeau (+2500): On paper he should dominate here but I’ll say that about most every course he plays. Played enough college golf in Dallas to figure out how to flight it but that was before he was generating 20940809820382 MPH club head and ball speed. Always interesting.

Gary Woodland (+2800): Rolling right along with the only blemish in Round 2 at TPC Sawgrass.  Should be able to navigate the big Par-5s and the big breezes.  

Chris Kirk (+3000): Former Colonial winner is on a hit-miss-hit here and on TOUR. Plenty of experience and has been flirting with it recently.

33-1 or Worse Select Opinions

Maverick McNealy (+3500): Guys who rack up weekends always get my attention. Guys who rack up weekends on difficult tracks as some of their best finishes on TOUR should separate themselves from the field.

Adam Hadwin (+4000): More rounds here OVER 80 than below 70.

Keegan Bradley (+4000): Last chance saloon for him and 120 of his closest friends this week! Not many hit it as well as he does though. Top 10.

Patton Kizzire (+5500): Closed with 65 last year on his debut and has won in windy conditions on Bermuda as well.

Jhonattan Vegas (+5500): Sturdy and strong and plenty of experience in the conditions including T4 last week at Corales.  One week he’ll get hot with the putter!

Matthew NeSmith (+9000): Interesting to see if he can do it again. That’s the next step for most of these guys after a big one.

Funny Money

Alex Smalley (+10000): Top 40

Brian Stuard (+12500): Top 20

Kramer Hickok (+12500): Top 10, Top 20

David Lipsky (+12500): Top 40

Min Woo Lee (+15000)

Brice Garnett (+25000)

Justin Lower (+30000)

Henrik Norlander (+35000): Only MC in six straight. Every week there’s a guy like this…

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

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