Cleat Geeks

Off the Tee

Next up: The Sony Open

imagesThe Sony Open, worth 500 FedExCup points and a purse of 5.8M, starts Thursday and runs through Sunday, January 17th. It is played at Waialae CC in Honolulu, HI. The course is only 7,020 yards from the Championship tees so those who are further off the tee will have an advantage but precision is key here. With both left and right doglegs combined with a peninsula par 3 ball control is key at Waialae CC. Ball control will not be easy though. As with most Hawaiian courses, wind is what really makes courses tough. If winds are up around 10-15 mph it could be tough to go low if you aren’t a great ball striker. If winds are calm, we could be looking at another very low number atop the leaderboard.

Who’s playing?:

Well, not many players actually. Not many we’ve heard of specifically. This is a pretty bland field. The biggest name in the field will be British Open Champ, Zach Johnson (which still isn’t a very big name for whatever reason). But its golf in January and that’s just par for the course. There will be one or two big names here and there after the Tournament of Champions, but a few weeks before The Masters, the big boys will come out. Some other notables include a hot Kevin Kisner, Brand Snedeker, Jimmy Walker, Webb Simpson, Jason Dufner, Keegan Bradley, and Matt Kuchar. The Thursday/Friday group to watch is probably Kevin Kisner, Davis Love III, and Brandt Snedeker. This could be an up, close, and personal tryout for the Ryder Cup coming up in September with Team Captain DLIII.

Picks to Click:

Justin Thomas

Justin Thomas

Jimmy Walker is the two time defending champion but I don’t think he will walk away with the title this year even though he won by a decisive 9 strokes last year. Many are thinking Matt Kuchar. I don’t believe so, I’m picking Justin Thomas. He shot a stunning 61 as a rookie last year and finished T6. He’s an up and coming star in the making out of Alabama and I think he goes home with first place this week feeding off the Tide’s great start to the week on Monday night. Others to watch for are Zach Johnson, Kevin Kisner, and Adam Scott, if he can figure out how to putt this week. With no Jordan Spieth, at least the field will have a chance.

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