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BlogMemorial Tournament Preview and Picks

Memorial Tournament

July 16th – 19th, 2020

Muirfield Village G.C.

Dubin, OH

Par: 72 / Yardage: 7,456

Purse: $9.3 million

with $1,674,000 to the winner

Defending Champion:
Patrick Cantlay

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:
sal@golfstats.com

This week’s field includes:

The field includes 76 of the top 100 and 43 of the top 50 in the latest Official World Rankings, with nine players from the top-ten: #1 Rory McIlroy, #2 Jon Rahm, #3 Justin Thomas, #4 Dustin Johnson, #5 Webb Simpson, #6 Brooks Koepka, #7 Bryson DeChambeau, #8 Patrick Reed and #10 Patrick Cantlay (#9 Adam Scott is still in Australia). The other top 50 players are #11 Xander Schauffele, #13 Collin Morikawa, #14 Tiger Woods, #16 Justin Rose, #17 Marc Leishman, #18 Gary Woodland, #19 Tony Finau, #20 Matt Kuchar, #21 Abraham Ancer, #22 Sungjae Im, #23 Hideki Matsuyama, #24 Louis Oosthuizen, #25 Paul Casey, #26 Shane Lowry, #27 Matthew Fitzpatrick, #28 Daniel Berger, #29 Bernd Wiesberger, #30 Kevin Na, #31 Rickie Fowler, #33 Viktor Hovland, #36 Kevin Kisner, #37 Danny Willett, #38 Sergio Garcia, #39 Billy Horschel, #40 Chez Reavie, #41 Cameron Smith, #42 Erik van Rooyen, #43 Victor Perez, #44 Kevin Streelman, #45 Jazz Janewattananond, #47 Matt Wallace, #48 Christiaan Bezuidenhout, #49 Graeme McDowell and #50 Rafa Cabrera Bello

Last year this event had 31 top-50 players.

The field includes 24 of the top 25 on the FedEx point standings for 2020.  Those players are #1 Justin Thomas, #2 Webb Simpson, #3 Sungjae Im, #4 Bryson DeChambeau, #5 Rory McIlroy, #6 Collin Morikawa, #7 Patrick Reed, #8 Brendon Todd, #9 Lanto Griffin, #10 Daniel Berger, #11 Marc Leishman, #12 Xander Schauffele, #13 Sebastian Munoz, #14 Abraham Ancer, #16 Hideki Matsuyama, #17 Kevin Na, #18 Kevin Streelman, #19 Joaquin Niemann, #20 Cameron Champ, #21 Viktor Hovland, #22 Cameron Smith, #23 Dustin Johnson, #24 Jon Rahm and #25 Nick Taylor.  The only top-25 player not in the field is #15 Tyrrell Hatton.

The field includes 15 past champions: Patrick Cantlay (2019), Bryson DeChambeau (2018), Jason Dufner (2017), William McGirt (2016), David Lingmerth (2015), Hideki Matsuyama (2014), Matt Kuchar (2013), Tiger Woods (2012, ’09, ’01, 2000 & 1999), Steve Stricker (2011), Justin Rose (2010), K.J. Choi (2007), Carl Pettersson (2006), Ernie Els (2004), Jim Furyk (2002) and Vijay Singh (1997).

A perfect way for fantasy golfers to check on the past performance of all the players in the Memorial field is our performance chart listed by the average finish.  Another way to check who is the best is through a special formula worked out in Golfstats that gives us the best average performances at the Memorial in the last five years or check out our sortable 8-year glance at the Memorial.

A good cheat sheet is this list of odds from the top bookmakers in England.

Another cheat sheet is this list of odds from the top bookmaker in Las Vegas.

Time to look at our who’s hot and who isn’t:

Who’s Hot in the field for the Memorial Tournament

Player Workday Charity Rocket Mortgage Travelers Championship RBC Heritage Charles Schwab Arnold Palmer Honda Classic WGC Mexico Puerto Rico Open Genesis Open AT&T Pebble Beach Phoenix Open Farmers Insurance
Bryson DeChambeau
(385.33 pts)
DNP Win
(132)
T6
(60)
T8
(33.33)
T3
(60)
4
(26.67)
DNP 2
(50)
DNP T5
(23.33)
DNP T52
(0)
DNP
Viktor Hovland
(248.33 pts)
3
(90)
T12
(38)
T11
(39)
T21
(19.33)
T23
(18)
T42
(2.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP Win
(44)
DNP T38
(4)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP
Collin Morikawa
(233.67 pts)
Win
(132)
DNP CUT
(-10)
T64
(0)
2
(66.67)
T9
(15)
DNP T42
(4)
DNP T26
(8)
DNP T25
(8.33)
T21
(9.67)
Daniel Berger
(213 pts)
DNP DNP DNP T3
(60)
Win
(88)
DNP T4
(26.67)
DNP DNP DNP T5
(23.33)
T9
(15)
DNP
Justin Thomas
(206.67 pts)
2
(100)
DNP CUT
(-10)
T8
(33.33)
T10
(26.67)
DNP DNP T6
(30)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T3
(30)
DNP
Webb Simpson
(175.33 pts)
DNP T8
(50)
DNP Win
(88)
CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP T61
(0)
DNP DNP DNP Win
(44)
DNP
Kevin Streelman
(171 pts)
T7
(55)
DNP 2
(100)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
T47
(1)
DNP DNP DNP 2
(33.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
T45
(1.67)
Xander Schauffele
(169.67 pts)
T14
(36)
DNP T20
(30)
T64
(0)
T3
(60)
T24
(8.67)
DNP T14
(18)
DNP T23
(9)
DNP T16
(11.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
Rory McIlroy
(168.67 pts)
DNP DNP T11
(39)
T41
(6)
T32
(12)
T5
(23.33)
DNP 5
(35)
DNP T5
(23.33)
DNP DNP T3
(30)
Dustin Johnson
(167.67 pts)
DNP DNP Win
(132)
T17
(22)
CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP T48
(1)
DNP T10
(13.33)
T32
(6)
DNP DNP
Patrick Reed
(154.67 pts)
T39
(11)
CUT
(-10)
T24
(26)
CUT
(-6.67)
T7
(36.67)
T15
(11.67)
DNP Win
(66)
DNP T51
(0)
DNP DNP T6
(20)
Abraham Ancer
(151 pts)
DNP DNP T11
(39)
2
(66.67)
T14
(24)
T56
(0)
DNP T12
(19)
DNP T43
(2.33)
DNP DNP DNP
Jon Rahm
(145 pts)
T27
(23)
DNP T37
(13)
T33
(11.33)
CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP T3
(45)
DNP T17
(11)
DNP T9
(15)
2
(33.33)
Gary Woodland
(125.67 pts)
T5
(70)
DNP CUT
(-10)
T62
(0)
9
(30)
DNP T8
(16.67)
T12
(19)
DNP DNP DNP T40
(3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
Ian Poulter
(121.67 pts)
T5
(70)
DNP 64
(0)
T14
(24)
T29
(14)
T32
(6)
T27
(7.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Patrick Cantlay
(118 pts)
T7
(55)
DNP T11
(39)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T17
(11)
T11
(13)
DNP DNP
Hideki Matsuyama
(116.67 pts)
T22
(28)
T21
(29)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
DNP T56
(0)
DNP T6
(30)
DNP T5
(23.33)
DNP T16
(11.33)
T45
(1.67)
Adam Hadwin
(113.67 pts)
T35
(15)
T4
(80)
DNP T41
(6)
T43
(4.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T26
(8)
CUT
(-3.33)
T40
(3.33)
DNP
Sungjae Im
(111.17 pts)
63
(0)
T53
(0)
T58
(0)
CUT
(-6.67)
T10
(26.67)
3
(30)
Win
(44)
T29
(10.5)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T34
(5.33)
T36
(4.67)
Mackenzie Hughes
(108.67 pts)
T48
(2)
DNP T3
(90)
T70
(0)
CUT
(-6.67)
DNP 2
(33.33)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
Maverick McNealy
(104.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
T8
(50)
DNP T58
(0)
T32
(12)
CUT
(-3.33)
T11
(13)
DNP T27
(7.67)
DNP T5
(23.33)
DNP 15
(11.67)
Kevin Kisner
(104 pts)
DNP 3
(90)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-6.67)
T29
(14)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T18
(16)
DNP DNP T38
(4)
DNP DNP
Joel Dahmen
(99 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP T20
(30)
T48
(1.33)
T19
(20.67)
T5
(23.33)
DNP DNP DNP T5
(23.33)
T14
(12)
WD
(-1.67)
T55
(0)
Billy Horschel
(91.17 pts)
T7
(55)
DNP CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-6.67)
T38
(8)
T36
(4.67)
T42
(2.67)
T9
(22.5)
DNP DNP DNP T9
(15)
T68
(0)
Kevin Na
(90.83 pts)
DNP WD
(-5)
5
(70)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
T36
(4.67)
DNP T9
(22.5)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
T14
(12)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP
Lucas Glover
(90.33 pts)
DNP T21
(29)
T20
(30)
T21
(19.33)
T23
(18)
CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
T61
(0)
DNP DNP T50
(0.33)
DNP T49
(0.33)
Doc Redman
(89.67 pts)
DNP T21
(29)
T11
(39)
T21
(19.33)
T58
(0)
T62
(0)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP T50
(0.33)
T34
(5.33)
T64
(0)
Mark Hubbard
(83.33 pts)
WD
(-5)
T12
(38)
T37
(13)
T33
(11.33)
T43
(4.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
T11
(13)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
T9
(15)
DNP
Troy Merritt
(81.67 pts)
T22
(28)
T8
(50)
T60
(0)
T70
(0)
CUT
(-6.67)
T24
(8.67)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
T25
(8.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP
Matthew Fitzpatrick
(77.17 pts)
T27
(23)
DNP CUT
(-10)
T14
(24)
T32
(12)
T9
(15)
DNP T37
(6.5)
DNP T30
(6.67)
T60
(0)
DNP DNP
Matthew Wolff
(76.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
2
(100)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-6.67)
54
(0)
T52
(0)
T58
(0)
DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
T21
(9.67)
Sepp Straka
(75 pts)
T14
(36)
T8
(50)
CUT
(-10)
T33
(11.33)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
T27
(7.67)
DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
Matt Kuchar
(73 pts)
T39
(11)
DNP DNP T41
(6)
CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP T22
(14)
DNP T2
(33.33)
T38
(4)
T16
(11.33)
DNP
Brendan Steele
(70 pts)
T52
(0)
DNP T6
(60)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
T4
(26.67)
DNP DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
Tony Finau
(69.33 pts)
DNP T53
(0)
CUT
(-10)
T33
(11.33)
T23
(18)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP T51
(0)
DNP 2
(33.33)
T6
(20)
Sergio Garcia
(68.83 pts)
DNP DNP T32
(18)
T5
(46.67)
CUT
(-6.67)
DNP DNP T37
(6.5)
DNP T37
(4.33)
DNP DNP DNP
Jason Day
(68.67 pts)
T7
(55)
CUT
(-10)
T46
(4)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-6.67)
WD
(-1.67)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
4
(26.67)
DNP T16
(11.33)
Danny Willett
(68 pts)
DNP T4
(80)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-6.67)
T18
(10.67)
DNP T42
(4)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP
Joaquin Niemann
(68 pts)
T31
(19)
DNP 63
(0)
T5
(46.67)
T32
(12)
CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP T49
(0.33)
Marc Leishman
(67 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP T58
(0)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
2
(33.33)
DNP T42
(4)
DNP T43
(2.33)
DNP DNP Win
(44)
Cameron Champ
(66.67 pts)
67
(0)
T12
(38)
DNP DNP T14
(24)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
T55
(0)
DNP T16
(11.33)
Bubba Watson
(66 pts)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
T52
(0)
T7
(36.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T18
(16)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T3
(30)
T6
(20)
Rory Sabbatini
(65.67 pts)
T17
(33)
CUT
(-10)
DNP T21
(19.33)
T14
(24)
T47
(1)
T35
(5)
DNP DNP T59
(0)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
Rickie Fowler
(61 pts)
T22
(28)
T12
(38)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-6.67)
T18
(10.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP DNP T37
(4.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
Henrik Norlander
(59.67 pts)
T31
(19)
T12
(38)
T41
(9)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T44
(2)
DNP T25
(8.33)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)

How Player Rankings are Computed

Who’s Not Hot in the field for the Memorial Tournament

Player Workday Charity Rocket Mortgage Travelers Championship RBC Heritage Charles Schwab Arnold Palmer Honda Classic WGC Mexico Puerto Rico Open Genesis Open AT&T Pebble Beach Phoenix Open Farmers Insurance
Vijay Singh
(-43.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-6.67)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Kevin Tway
(-42.33 pts)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T37
(4.33)
T30
(6.67)
C.T. Pan
(-38 pts)
T48
(2)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
T52
(0)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T63
(0)
CUT
(-3.33)
Bo Hoag
(-35 pts)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP T35
(5)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
Andrew Putnam
(-33.33 pts)
T58
(0)
CUT
(-10)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP
Scott Harrington
(-28 pts)
CUT
(-10)
T39
(11)
CUT
(-10)
DNP CUT
(-6.67)
T47
(1)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
Jim Furyk
(-26 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP T54
(0)
CUT
(-6.67)
T49
(0.67)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP
Denny McCarthy
(-24 pts)
CUT
(-10)
DNP WD
(-5)
CUT
(-6.67)
66
(0)
CUT
(-3.33)
CUT
(-3.33)
DNP DNP T37
(4.33)
DNP T59
(0)
T64
(0)
Peter Kuest
(-20 pts)
DNP CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-10)
DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Ryan Moore
(-20 pts)
DNP DNP CUT
(-10)
CUT
(-6.67)
CUT
(-6.67)
T52
(0)
DNP DNP DNP T30
(6.67)
DNP CUT
(-3.33)
DNP

How Player Rankings are Computed

The Buzz:

So for the first time since 1957, we will see the same course hold two tournaments consecutively.  Back then the World Championship of Golf was played the week after the All-American Open and both were played at the Tam O’Shanter Club outside of Chicago.  In the ten years, this was on the schedule, the first one in 1948 saw Lloyd Mangrum win back to back, a feat that wasn’t duplicated again.  So Collin Morikawa will be looking to match that this week.

Despite the hype that Muirfield Village was going to be setup to score better on last week, it’s scoring average of 71.85 was about the same it’s been over the years at the Memorial.  So even though the course was softened with all of the rain that fell during the week it ranked 9th hardest of 2020, while last year at the Memorial the course played to a 72.08 average and was the 13th hardest.  In 2018 Muirfield Village played to a 71.40 average, the 30th hardest course on the PGA Tour.  In 2017 the course played to a 72.80 average and was the 13th hardest.  So don’t expect a serious change of scoring average from last week to this week.

To show that if you want it to rain in Columbus, Ohio just bring in the PGA Tour, thunderstorms will affect the event again with Thursday, Friday and Saturday having a 50% chance of thunderstorms, Sunday is supposed to be nice.  So despite the greens going to be faster this week, there are going to be no real challenges that will change the characteristics of the course in a week’s time.

Will we ever see fans back at a Golf Tournament?

Of course, we will but it may be longer than we all thought it was going to be.  When the Tour announced this plan back in May to start playing again, the first five weeks were with no fans and this week the Memorial was supposed to have fans on the ground.  With the explosion of the virus again in the last couple of weeks, things have seriously changed.  The first drop was the Memorial announcing that they couldn’t accommodate fans a couple of weeks ago.  At about the same time the PGA of America said the PGA Championship, being played in San Francisco next month would also be fan-less.  Last week the PGA and European Tour ran out of time and had to postpone the Ryder Cup till next year, again because they couldn’t accommodate fans.  It was thought that the WGC-St. Jude Classic in Memphis would have fans, but they said no last week and today the PGA Tour said there will be no fans through the Tour Championship.  We still don’t know what the U.S. Open or the Masters will do, I would think the USGA will have to make an announcement on this pretty soon.  As for the Masters, that’s four months from now so they have time on their hands.

I think it sucks, the players and officials feel the same.  The lack of fans are making it real hard for these tournaments and the PGA Tour to stay afloat, let allow give money to their charities.  For tournaments they also lose another big revenue amount with Wednesday pro-ams, those aren’t being played anymore.  Gosh look over at the European Tour, they had their first event and the winner Marc Warren won just $86,879 for the victory.  That is a drastically reduce prize when you consider that the lowest check this year on the LPGA Tour was $165,000.  So everyone is hurting but we do have live golf each week which is great.  For those wondering why the European Tour wasn’t on Golf Channel this week, they will do there first telecast in two weeks from the Betfred British Masters.

Things you need to know about the Memorial

This is the 45th annual Memorial Tournament. The first one was played in 1976, and it has always been played at Muirfield Village.  There are close ties between the Memorial Tournament and Jack Nicklaus. The tournament was a long-time vision of Nicklaus, who grew up playing the famous Scioto Country Club, which hosted the 1926 U.S. Open.  But the course wasn’t large enough to hold a major championship, so Nicklaus built Muirfield Village with that in mind.  In some ways, the Memorial mirrors the Masters because it’s the tournament that Nicklaus always thought was the best run on a great course.

The tournament got its name because every year a different golfer is recognized for their contribution to the game of golf. The first Memorial Tournament honoree was Bobby Jones in 1976. This year Nick Price was the honoree along with posthumous Gene Little and Ted Ray.  In the Journalism category, the 2020 selection was Jim Nantz  With the advent of no fans that means there won’t be a Wednesday ceremony so I would think the honorees will be honor next year.

Course information:

  • Muirfield Village Golf Club
  • Dublin, Ohio
  • 7,456 yards     Par 36-36–72
  • Muirfield Village has a 76.9 rating and slope rating of 153 from the championship tees. The course is very private. The tees and Fairways are Bentgrass Poa Annua while the rough is Kentucky Bluegrass with ryegrass and fescue. The greens are bentgrass.
  • Last week during the Workday Charity the course played to a 7185 scoring average and right now is the 9th hardest course in 2020. Last year Muirfield Village played to a 72.08 average and was the 13th hardest course on the PGA Tour.  In 2018 it played to a 71.40 average and was the 30th hardest course.  In 2017 it played to a 72.80 average and was the 13th hardest course on tour. In 2016 it played to a 70.99 average and was the 36th hardest course on the PGA Tour.  In 2015 Muirfield Village was the 23rd hardest course on the PGA Tour playing to a 71.74 average.  Because of the course being soft with a lot of rain the week before and perfect conditions during the tournament, the course plays easier.  But last year due to poor weather over the weekend with high winds created a higher scoring average.
  • During the 1966 Masters, Jack Nicklaus told some of his closet friends that he wanted to bring a major championship to the Columbus area.  Unfortunately, the best course in town, Scioto Country Club, was not big enough to hold a tournament that Nicklaus envisioned.  At the time he was just getting into course designing, so he knew just enough to be dangerous on the subject.  He also envisioned that his course would have some of the same characteristics that Augusta National had, plus Nicklaus wanted the event to mirror Augusta National.
  • After the Masters, Nicklaus and his trusted friends made secret site surveys around the Columbus area and found the site he thought was perfect, on the Northwestern part of town.  In 1967 with his own money, Nicklaus started buying the land that would be Muirfield Village.
  • By 1970, Nicklaus realized that he had a future in building golf courses. He started his own company, and in 1972, under the supervision of Golden Bear Inc., construction began in Dublin, Ohio. The project encountered many delays, including exorbitant amounts of rain that ultimately postponed the completion of the project until late 1973.  The project also almost bankrupt Nicklaus who funded the whole thing. Nicklaus played the inaugural round of golf at Muirfield in October 1973. Fittingly, his round was marred by torrential rainstorms. The course officially opened on May 24, 1974, with an exhibition match between Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf. Nicklaus shot a 66, which stood as the course record until 1979.
  • Over the years, Muirfield Village has racked up numerous prestigious awards, but the most essential accolade that Muirfield Village gets every year is when it is voted one of the five best sites by PGA Tour players, not only because the course is excellent, but because how well the players are pampered here.  It goes beyond even the PGA Tour rules.  It’s the only tournament on Tour that bans equipment manufacturers, tournament representatives, and the media from the practice facilities and locker rooms.
  • When Nicklaus built the course in the ’70s, he had championships in mind and of course, a yearly PGA Tour event.  Along with the Memorial, which got started in 1976, the course has held just about every other major tournament, except for a U.S. Open or a PGA Championship.  Other championships that have been held at Muirfield include the 1986 U.S. Junior Amateur, the 1987 Ryder Cup Matches, the 1992 U.S. Amateur, the 1998 Solheim Cup, and the 2013 Presidents Cup.
  • The par 72 course has 73 bunkers, with water coming into play on 11 holes. In general, Muirfield Village plays a long, challenging 7,456 yards. With a course rating of 76.9 and a slope rating of 153, it is one of the most challenging venues on Tour.
  • Nicklaus didn’t just design this course with the golfer in mind; he was one of the first designers to account for the fan. The 220-acre venue strategically incorporates hills and mounds that allow fans to look down upon most of the action. This set up mirrors most traditional stadium-seating arrangements found at major sporting events.
  • Over the years Nicklaus tweaks the course, but for the fourth year in a row, the course will be pretty much like it was the year before, except for the weather.  Last October Nicklaus said that he was planning a complete overhaul of the course in a project that was to take two years to complete.  But the plan, which was supposed to start last year to change the 8th, 11th, and 15 holes never happened.  In phase two Nicklaus was going to rebuild all 18 greens along with rebuilding the bunkers and creating new fairway widths.  He also was going to convert the 5th hole from a par five to a four, making the course a par 71.  Maybe when Nicklaus speaks to the media on Wednesday he can update those plans, but with everything happening in the world it’s probably not a good time to spend money to redo something that is great.

Let’s take a look at vital stats that are important for those playing at Muirfield Village.

This is based on the most important stats for the Muirfield Village, based on data from last week’s Workday and using data from all the players in this week’s field with stats from 2020. Of course weather plays a factor in scoring and with the course being wet, the temperature high and conditions soft, expect good scoring. It has to be said that Muirfield Village may be the victim like other courses on the PGA Tour in which technology is taking some of the bite out of the course. In some respects that is true, but if the course played very dry and fast, along with some wind the course would be very tough.
Last week we didn’t see an assault on shotmaking as the course ranked 16th hardest for 2020 in Driving Accuracy (out of 33 courses played in 2020) and 6th in Greens in Regulation. The same in some other stats like scrambling, the course was the hardest of the year in getting it up and down, but to be fair, in past we compare these stats over the course of a season which includes majors and courses that tend to always play hard, this year we haven’t had a major and missing some tough courses like Quail Hollow, home of the Wells Fargo and of course the Players Championship.
Still, in looking at last week’s stats we will be able to compare more accurately how players do this week. One thing that is striking is that of those in the top-ten in driving distance at Workday, only Patrick Cantlay finished in the top-ten. Collin Morikawa finished 19th, while Justin Thomas was 20th, so driving if far isn’t important. As for keeping the ball in the fairway, Collin Morikawa was T-9th, Justin Thomas was T-14th and 3rd place finisher Viktor Hovland was T-4th so it’s more important to keep it in the fairway than driving it long. As for putting Collin Morikawa was 13th in Strokes Gained Putting last week while Justin Thomas 29th and Viktor Hovland were 52nd. Still putting was important when you look at how Ian Poulter was 2nd in Strokes Gained Putting and finished T-5th. Gary Woodland was 3rd in SG Putting and finished T-5th, Chase Seiffert was 4th in SG Putting and finished 4th and Charley Hoffman was 7th in SG Putting and Billy Horschel was 6th as both players finished T-7th at Workday, so yes putting is a key to a possible win.

In looking at our four categories and taking into account that there will be more rough and faster greens, our first category for this week at Muirfield Village is strokes gained tee-to-green. Last week Collin Morikawa ranked 3rd in this stat, while last year’s champion Patrick Cantlay ranked 2nd, 2018 champion Bryson DeChambeau ranked 12th, 2017 champion Jason Dufner ranked 1st, 2016 winner William McGirt ranked 7th and 2015 champion David Lingmerth ranked 9th. Next important is putting inside 10 feet, Muirfield Village has some great greens, they are only 5,000 square feet but have a lot of undulation, and the bentgrass is easy to read. Still, with the greens running at 11 on the stipmeter the course ranked 8th hardest while Collin Morikawa was 20th, making 63 of 69 putts inside ten feet. Now, this isn’t bad, Morikawa when you consider that he had 55 putts six feet and in and only missed one. Last year the course ranked 12th in this category while Patrick Cantlay was 19th making 64 of 71 putts. In 2018 Muirfield ranked 12th, 8th in 2017, 10th in 2016 and 4th in 2015 while in 2018 champion DeChambeau ranked T-19th, 2017 winner Dufner ranked T-38th, 2016 winner McGirt ranked T-23rd and 2015 winner Lingmerth ranked 5th. You have to putt well to score well at Muirfield Village, last week the field made 87.29% of the putts in that distance.
Our third important stat is scrambling, players will miss greens and have to get it up and down. Last week at the Workday the course was 1st in scrambling, while Morikawa was 31st. The course ranked 7th last year, 11th in 2018, 2nd in 2017, 14th in 2016, and 13th in 2015 while Cantlay ranked 5th last year, DeChambeau ranked 1st in 2018, Dufner in 2017 was 30th, McGirt was 6th in 2016 and Lingmerth was T-9th. Our last category is birdie average, last week it ranked T-18th while Morikawa ranked 1st. Last year it ranked T-28th while in 2018 it ranked 42nd, in 2017 it ranked 29th, in 2016 it ranked 48th and in 2015 was 43rd which means that it’s hard to make birdies at Muirfield Village. So how did our winners do, Cantlay was 1st last year making 25 birdies, in 2018 DeChambeau was T-7th, Dufner was T-2nd in 2017, averaging 5.25, McGirt was at 5.00 which ranked T-16th and Lingmerth averaged 5.50 and ranked T-6th.
So look for the course to play the same this week as it played last week.

*Strokes Gained tee-to-green: The per round average of the number of strokes the player was better or worse than the field average on the same course & event minus the players’ strokes gained putting value.

*Putting inside 10 feet: Very easy, counts every putt from ten feet in to see who makes the most.

*Scrambling: The percent of time a player misses the green in regulation, but still makes par or better.

*Birdie Average: Average number of birdies made over the course of a round

The 116 of the 132 players from this year’s field with stats from 2020:

Click any column title in the table header to sort columns.

Here is a link to the other 106 players in the Memorial

DraftKings tips

Of the 133 in the field, 120 have played at least once at Muirfield Village in The Memorial since 2015 and last weeks Workday Charity:

  • Kevin Streelman is 53 under, in 24 rounds playing 6 years
  • Patrick Cantlay is 44 under, in 16 rounds playing 4 years
  • David Lingmerth is 38 under, in 20 rounds playing 5 years
  • Matt Kuchar is 38 under, in 22 rounds playing 6 years
  • Hideki Matsuyama is 36 under, in 22 rounds playing 6 years
  • Marc Leishman is 36 under, in 22 rounds playing 6 years
  • Rickie Fowler is 36 under, in 20 rounds playing 6 years
  • Byeong Hun An is 34 under, in 18 rounds playing 5 years
  • Jason Dufner is 34 under, in 22 rounds playing 6 years
  • Gary Woodland is 29 under, in 22 rounds playing 6 years
  • Jordan Spieth is 29 under, in 20 rounds playing 6 years
  • Bryson DeChambeau is 27 under, in 12 rounds playing 3 years
  • Dustin Johnson is 26 under, in 14 rounds playing 4 years
  • Emiliano Grillo is 25 under, in 18 rounds playing 5 years
  • Justin Rose is 25 under, in 14 rounds playing 4 years
  • Keegan Bradley is 25 under, in 20 rounds playing 6 years
  • Jason Day is 24 under, in 20 rounds playing 6 years
  • Patrick Reed is 24 under, in 20 rounds playing 5 years
  • Tony Finau is 24 under, in 18 rounds playing 5 years
  • Billy Horschel is 23 under, in 16 rounds playing 5 years
  • Rory Sabbatini is 23 under, in 16 rounds playing 4 years
  • Joaquin Niemann is 22 under, in 12 rounds playing 3 years
  • Rory McIlroy is 22 under, in 10 rounds playing 3 years
  • Justin Thomas is 21 under, in 18 rounds playing 6 years
  • Collin Morikawa is 19 under, in 4 rounds playing 1 year
  • Ryan Moore is 18 under, in 18 rounds playing 5 years
  • Kevin Kisner is 17 under, in 17 rounds playing 5 years
  • Viktor Hovland is 15 under, in 4 rounds playing 1 year
  • Xander Schauffele is 15 under, in 10 rounds playing 3 years
  • Phil Mickelson is 13 under, in 22 rounds playing 6 years
  • Troy Merritt is 13 under, in 14 rounds playing 4 years
  • Ian Poulter is 12 under, in 4 rounds playing 1 year
*Here are the ones with the best under par totals averaging it per years played (2 or more starts)
  • Patrick Cantlay is 44 under playing 4 years (-11.0)
  • David Lingmerth is 38 under playing 5 years (-7.6)
  • Dustin Johnson is 26 under playing 4 years (-6.5)
  • Tom Hoge is 7 under playing 2 years (-3.5)
  • Justin Rose is 25 under playing 4 years (-6.3)
  • Shane Lowry is 12 under playing 3 years (-4.0)
  • Joaquin Niemann is 22 under playing 3 years (-7.3)
  • Rory McIlroy is 22 under playing 3 years (-7.3)
  • Xander Schauffele is 15 under playing 3 years (-5.0)
  • Kevin Streelman is 53 under playing 6 years (-8.8)
  • Hideki Matsuyama is 36 under playing 6 years (-6.0)
  • Tony Finau is 24 under playing 5 years (-4.8)
  • Bubba Watson is 4 under playing 4 years (-1.0)
  • Rory Sabbatini is 23 under playing 4 years (-5.8)
  • Jason Dufner is 34 under playing 6 years (-5.7)
  • Brendon Todd is 5 under playing 2 years (-2.5)
  • Jason Day is 24 under playing 6 years (-4.0)
  • Sungjae Im is 4 under playing 2 years (2.0)
  • Byeong Hun An is 34 under playing 5 years (-6.8)
  • Tiger Woods is 4 under playing 3 years (-1.3)
  • Billy Horschel is 23 under playing 5 years (-4.6)
  • Rickie Fowler is 36 under playing 6 years (-6.0)
  • Gary Woodland is 29 under playing 6 years (-4.8)
  • Phil Mickelson is 13 under playing 6 years (-2.2)
  • Keegan Bradley is 25 under playing 6 years (-4.2)
  • Charl Schwartzel is 7 under playing 5 years (-1.4)
  • Bryson DeChambeau is 27 under playing 3 years (-9.0)
  • Brooks Koepka is 2 under playing 3 years (-0.7)
  • Emiliano Grillo is 25 under playing 5 years (-5.0)
  • Justin Thomas is 21 under playing 6 years (-3.5)

Historical ParBreakers

Here is a look at those playing this week and who has made the most eagles and birdies at Muirfield Village in The Memorial since 2015 and last weeks Workday Charity:

So it makes sense that the top players on this list are guys that will make lot’s of points this week

*Here are the guys that cost the most on DraftKings this week:
  • Bryson DeChambeau – $11,100
  • Justin Thomas – $10,900
  • Rory McIlroy – $10,700
  • Dustin Johnson – $10,300
  • Collin Morikawa – $10,000
  • Patrick Cantlay – $9,800
  • Webb Simpson – $9,600
  • Viktor Hovland – $9.500
  • Hideki Matsuyama – $9,400
  • Jon Rahm – $9,300
  • Xander Schauffele – $9,200
  • Brooks Koepka – $9,100
  • Tiger Woods – $9,000
Some tips on choosing your game and picks

So we have the best players in golf and it will be some big decisions on your DraftKings picks.  First of all, this is the six straight weeks that DraftKings has offered a game with a million-dollar first-place check.  To be frank and blunt about it, this game is probably the sucker game of the batch.  Yes, you can win a million dollars but you are one of 178,000 picks.  Yes, that’s a lot which means that someone, and it’s probably a person that you least expect to will have all six guys in the top-ten and be in the running with some others.  To simplify things, you probably have as good of a chance in a $2 state lottery, again the odds are against you.

As we have mentioned in the past, the secret in winning any DraftKings game is to make sure all six of your players make the cut.  In past years 70 and ties made the cut, this year the PGA Tour changed the rule to 60 and ties, so your odds just went up drastically.  As an example, last week in the $20 game I had Brooks Koepka, who you would think makes cuts.  Well, he got off to a terrible start when he shot 41 on the front nine, came back a bit to shot 33 on the back for a 74.  Again he had problems on Friday on the front, as he played his first six holes in 3 over.  So at that point, he was 5 over with very little chance to make the cut.  But he played his last ten holes in six under to finish at 1 under which didn’t make the cut.  So it’s disheartening when that happens.  A couple of other picks took Ryan Armour who didn’t miss a cut since the break and in his previous two starts was T-6th at Travelers and T-4th at Rocket Mortgage.  He had played in three previous Memorials and finished T-22nd in 2018, T-23rd in 2018 and missed the cut in 2017.  Still, with all of this data my thought was, he could make the cut.  Everything looked good on Friday as he was 2 under after 14 holes, but he finished bogey, birdie, bogey, bogey to miss out by 2 shots, a real bummer.  Another pick because I needed a cheap person, again to make the cut was Brian Stuard who was $7,100.  He too had a good run after the break, making the cut in all four events as he had over par rounds in just two of his 16 rounds.  In looking at his past play at the Memorial, he had played it seven times making the cut in his last five starts.  So my thinking is this is a great guy to make the cut on a course he has been ok at.  He opens up with a 75, his worst round on tour since the Honda Classic, and things didn’t improve as he shot 73 on day two.  Same with Maverick McNealy, thought he would make the cut and was even par after 25 holes, but played his last ten holes in four over.

The point I am making, the art of picking six guys to make the cut is tougher than you think, but with a shortened field of only 132 to this, make that your motive.  Also, it’s ok to play that millionaire game once or twice, first, it’s expensive at $20 and though it pays off 39,750 spots that means only 21% of the people will return any money and to make it sound even worst, for you to make $40, only 5% of those will double your money.  If you really want to make any money, they have $20 games in which ten players are in the game and the top-5 get $36.  The odds are in much better as 50% of those wins and the game is a lot easier with only nine others playing.  All I am saying, it’s important to pick the right game to play in, don’t think that the $20 millionaire game is your best bet because the payouts are so high.

This week’s picks

In looking at this week’s game of course Bryson DeChambeau is the top dog at $11,100, he is playing the best and with his win at Memorial in 2018, you have to think he will do good.  Still, remember this, he is a lot of money which limits you on guys in the $8,600 to $9500.  Next up is Justin Thomas at $10,900.  On paper, the thought is, geez he’s had a great year and should have won last week at Workday.  Yes, Thomas will probably play well, but Thomas had a three-shot lead with three holes left and blew it.  In the playoff, he holes a 55-foot no-brainer but didn’t win when Morikawa made a 20 footer after him to extend the playoff.  Thomas lost the playoff with a semi-poor drive that was stymied by a tree on the third playoff hole.  The point is, maybe there is some residual from that lost, you never know.  Still, the thought is Thomas will play well.  Then you have Rory McIlroy at $10,700.  He comes into this week with a less than stellar start to his after-pandemic start but we can say they were on courses he doesn’t play on.  In looking at his record at the Memorial, he missed the cut last year, and in eight starts his best finish was T-4th in 2016 so we can’t say he likes to play the course.  He has struggled all year especially in the final round, so the thought is that you skip on Rory this week.  But you never know what he did in the last two weeks that could have got the magic rolling along.  Frankly for me will take the chance that he won’t play well and won’t pick him.  Now Dustin Johnson at $10,300 is a buy for me.  He won looking great at the Travelers and has to think he’s in a good way right now and will continue the roll.  At least he has shown some past promise at Memorial, was 3rd in 2016, and T-8th in his last start in 2018.  Collin Morikawa at $10,000 on paper sounds like a sound bet, but I am taking a pass on him.  Just think that he won’t be able to duplicate what he did last week, it’s harder than it looks and he is just 23, so I am taking a pass on him.  A big year at defending champion Patrick Cantlay at $9,800, I know that it’s a big task, in the history of the Memorial it’s only been done once, or is it twice?  Tiger Woods won back-to-back-back titles in 199, 2000, and 2001.  Cantlay played well last week and think he will be in great form this week.  As for Webb Simpson at $9,600 I am a bit apprehensive, not that he isn’t playing good but he doesn’t play at Memorial and in seven starts has missed three cuts with the best place finish of T-7th back in 2011.  Just think this is a good week to pass on him.  Viktor Hovland at $9,500 is a good pick, he has played in every event since the break, made the cut in every event and his game seems to get stronger.  He was 3rd last week which is a good sign, now the only fault I have with Hovland, he is a weak putter which could be a problem, but I think he not only will make the cut, but give a person that picks him a lot of points and will be in the top-15.  Another poor putter is Hideki Matsuyama at $9,400, yes he seems to be hitting it well but hasn’t been in contention for a bit, takes a pass on him.  Still can’t believe that Jon Rahm is as high as $9,300, yes he is rated second in the Official World Golf Rankings but hasn’t played well and I don’t see that changing this week.  Xander Schauffele at $9,200 is someone that is hard to choose.  He has made the cut in all four events since the break and was T-3rd at the Charles Schwab and T-14th last week at the Workday.  Still think there are others that you can justify over Schauffele.  I know that Brooks Koepka at $9,100 missed the cut last week, but played great down the stretch and think he will do good this week.  He like Dustin Johnson, both with injuries in the second half last year is on the comeback trail, Johnson won three weeks ago and wouldn’t be surprised to see Koepka win real soon.  Last we have Tiger Woods at $9,000.  I don’t think with his five months since competition he will be sharp, but he did show us a pretty good game at Capitol One match in May so he is Tiger Woods so we can’t disregard him.

 

*Players in that $7,500 to $8,900 price range, which ones are worth the money?:

Rickie Fowler at $8,800 seems very high for how he has played of late, still, he switched back to his old irons a couple of weeks back, showed some promise with a T-22nd last week and basically Rickie plays his best when you least expect it.  Many will like Daniel Berger at $8,700, but he is at his best in the south and on bermudagrass, so take a pass on him this week.  Gary Woodland at $8,600 may be worth it this week, he has been up and down this year but does play solidly at Muirfield Village.  Abraham Ancer at $8,500 is a good pick, have to say he has been wonderful, has not missed a cut in 12 starts and has finished in the top-12 in six of those starts.  Jason Day is a player we have forgotten most of the year, but at $8,000 and his T-7th last week at the Workday, you have to consider.  Kevin Streelman at $7,600 is the best pick of anyone.  He is playing well and seems to do good at Memorial including a T-7th last week at Workday.  The second-best pick is Ian Poulter also at $7,600.  He plays well at Memorial and was T-5th last week at Workday.  Another good pick is Billy Horschel at $7,500, he has played well at Memorial and was T-9th last year at Muirfield Village and T-7th last week at Workday.  Lots of good choices at $7,500, another one is Kevin Kisner who has done ok at the Memorial and in his last start at Rocket Mortgage was 3rd.

 

Some of the “bargains” this week at the Memorial

Our first bargain is Cameron Champ at $7,400, he has played well since the break and should do ok this week.  Another player worth $7,400 is Adam Hadwin, again because he should make the cut and produce points.  Hard to believe that you can get Phil Mickelson at $7,300.  His game hasn’t been that bad to devalue him so low, has mixed results at the Memorial but he is Phil and worth the cost. Keegan Bradley at $7,200 is worth it because he should make the cut and accumulate a lot of points. Another player that will make the cut is Lucas Glover at $7,100, you’d be surprised what a great DraftKings pick Glover always seems to be.  Same with Sepp Streaks at $7,000, a cheap price for someone that will make the cut.  Another guy that should make the cut is Brendon Todd at $6,900 he has played well at Muirfield Village including a T-8th in 2014.  Our super low price bargain is Jim Furyk at $6,500, he has played well at the Memorial and has mixed results of late.  Another bargain is Jason Dufner at $6,500, he won at Memorial in 2017 and he does make a lot of cuts.

Here are some of the secrets of what it takes to play well at the Memorial:

The key stat for the winner:

As we said above Muirfield for the sixth year in a row is probably going to play easy.  It played easy last week for Workday and the rain is continuing.  Over the course of the last month, just over 3 inches of rain has fallen on the course, making it very soft. Usually, Muirfield Village is a course that will get you ready for a U.S. Open, but now it’s the course that will get you ready for the WGC-St. Jude Classic and the PGA Championship, which are just weeks away.  No matter how comfortable, you can’t overpower this course, you have to hit it in the fairway and think each shot to the green.

More keys:
  • Those that do well in majors do well at Muirfield Village.  Of the 34 different champions of the Memorial, they have accounted for 511 wins on the PGA Tour while 17 have won a total of 68 major championships. What’s more, 15 of the last 27 Memorial champions have been a winner of a major championship.
  • In the history of the Memorial, only three leaders after the first round have won (Ernie Els in 2004, Justin Rose in 2010 and Jason Dufner 2017). 15 second-round leaders have won, and 19 third-round leaders have won.  Between 1994 and 2006, 11 of the 14 winners were in the lead after the third round.  But since 2007, only 4 champions had the lead going into the final round so again look for someone coming out of the pack to win like Patrick Cantlay did last year. 
  • 11 of the last 23 winners were in the top four in greens hit. In 2009 Tiger Woods was T3rd in greens hit while Justin Rose was T-13th in 2010, Steve Stricker was T30th in 2011, Tiger Woods was T-1st in 2012, Matt Kuchar was also 1st in 2013.  In 2014 Hideki Matsuyama was T-22nd while David Lingmerth was T-16th in 2015.  In 2016 William McGirt was T-7th in greens hit while in 2017 Jason Dufner lead greens hit.  In 2018 Bryson DeChambeau was T-12th in greens hit while last year Patrick Cantlay was T-11th.
  • Now last week at the Workday, Collin Morikawa was the leader after the first and second rounds, and with a final round of 66 help get him into the playoff.
  • Overpowering the par fives is crucial, last year Patrick Cantlay was 12 under the best of the winners since Tiger Woods was 14 under in 2001.  Last week’s winner Collin Morikawa continued the trend playing the par 5s in 10 under par.
  • In past years hitting greens has been significant, as Muirfield Village has some of the hardest set of greens to hit from the fairway.  Once you miss the greens, it’s hard to get it up and down, in 2014 of the 2,631 greens missed only 1,375 par or better was made, it was the fourth hardest course in scrambling at 52.26%.  In 2015 of the 2,504 greens missed only 1,382 par or better were made making it the 13th hardest.  In 2016 of the 2,386 greens missed only 1,240 par or better were make making it the 14th hardest on tour.  In 2017 of the 2,810 greens missed only 1,433 were able to get it up and down making it the 2nd hardest on tour.  In 2018 2,419 greens were missed with 1,315 able to get it up and down the 11th hardest on tour, last year 2,579 greens were missed with 1,420 able to get it up and down making it the 7th hardest on tour..
  • Accuracy is key to winning at Memorial, eleven of the last 17 winners have been in the top-10 in driving accuracy, which proves the point that you have to drive the ball well at Muirfield Village.  In 2009 Tiger Woods was 2nd while in 2010 Justin Rose was T-10th.  In 2011 Steve Stricker kept the tradition up as he was T-3rd but in 2012 Tiger Woods broke the tradition when he was T-14th in driving making him the first player out of the top-ten in driving since Ernie Els won in 2004.  Even worst things got bad in 2013 as Matt Kuchar was T-37th in driving accuracy, in 2014 Matsuyama was T-11th while in 2015 Lingmerth was T-11th. In 2016 McGirt was 38th in fairways hit while 2017 winner Jason Dufner was T-7th in fairways hit.  In 2018 Bryson DeChambeau was 4thy while last year Patrick Cantlay was also 4th in driving accuracy.  Last week Collin Morikawa was 9th in Driving Accuracy.
  • In its 44-year history, there have been 8 playoffs, the last coming last year when DeChambeau beat Byeong Hun An with a birdie on the second extra hole.  Now between 1976 and 2013, the tournament saw only four playoffs the previous was in 1992 when David Edwards beat Rick Fehr on the second hole.  Since then every Memorial except for three (2005, ’07 and ’11) has been won by at least two shots or more.

Active tournaments that have the least amount of playoffs since 1976:

  • 5 – Players championship
  • 6 – Arnold Palmer Invitational
  • 8 – Shriners Hospital
  • 8 – Memorial
  • 8 – Honda Classic
  • 8 – John Deere Classic

Only eleven times in the history of the Memorial has a player shot four rounds in the 60s with eight of them winning. Patrick Cantlay did it last year, before than Byeong Hun An did it in 2018, before that Steve Stricker did it in 2011 but the last time that happened before that was in 2005 when Bart Bryant prevailed.

Last we have to talk about the weather.  This tournament has always had its share of severe weather, last week they encountered a lot of delays and had to move up the starting times on Sunday, to complete play.  I remember when I use to attend this event between 1988 and 2003, one year Barbara Nicklaus hired an Indian chief to do dances to avoid bad weather.  Barbara may need that Indian Chief this year because unfortunately, there is nothing to stop severe weather this week the weather will be bad on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday. 

Who to watch for at the Memorial Tournament

Best Bets:

Bryson DeChambeau

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T22 Win T38

Nothing unusual with this pick, the only problem to watch, he has played great the last five weeks and as we all know sometimes streaks do come to an end, hopefully, it’s not this week.

Patrick Cantlay

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
Win 4 T35

Defending champion who can do it again, has shown he can be a top player on tour, was T-7th last week at Workday and T-11th at Travelers. Has played very well at Muirfield Village, was 4th at the Memorial in 2018, won last year, and was T-7th last week at Workday. For these three starts he is 44 under in his last 12 rounds.

Dustin Johnson

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T8 CUT 3 T13 T46 CUT T19 4 T33 T14 68

Game came together at the Travelers with a win. Mixed results at Memorial, still was 4th in 2011, 3rd in 2016 and T-8th last year so he knows how to play well at Muirfield Village.

Best of the rest:

Collin Morikawa

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
First time playing in this event

Hard to win back to back but he is a special player that we expect will have a great week. Never played in the Memorial, but in his first go-around of Muirfield Village, last week won with a 19 under par score, the lowest 72 hole score by a first time player at Muirfield Village.

Abraham Ancer

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T65 T57

His game has been great since the break with a T-14th at Colonial, 2nd at Heritage, and T-11th at Travelers. Has made two cuts out of two starts at the Memorial where he was T-57th in 2018 and T-65th last year.

Justin Thomas

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
CUT T8 T4 CUT CUT T37

Game is at a good place now, was T-10th at Colonial, T-8th at RBC Heritage and 2nd at Workday has been 45 under in 14 rounds. If he could erase that one bad round per event, he will be a winner. At the Memorial was T-4th in 2017, T-8th in 2018, and missed the cut last year. Yes, you never know what he is going to do and he has to be worried about blowing a 3 shot lead with 3 holes left at Workday.

Viktor Hovland

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
First time playing in this event

Another of these young studs that turned professional last summer and already has a victory at Puerto Rico and put away $2.4 in earnings. Has proven to be a workhorse, played all five post-pandemic events, his game seems to be getting better was T-12th at Rocket Mortgage and 3rd at Workday, his first visit to Muirfield Village.

Brooks Koepka

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T31 T52

Has always struggled at Memorial, was T-52nd in 2015, and T-31st in 2017. Still, his game seems is getting better and despite missing the cut at Workday, played his final ten holes in six-under.

Solid contenders, but be careful in picking them

Rory McIlroy

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
CUT T8 T4 T15 T57 CUT 5 T10

Game hasn’t looked sharp, was T-32nd at Charles Schwab, T-41st at Heritage and T-11th at Travelers. If you ask him that’s ok since he isn’t a fan of Colonial or Harbour Town. Is a fan of Muirfield Village, has four top-ten finishes in eight starts, best T-4th in 2016 and 5th in 2011, missed the cut last year and was T-8th in 2018.

Tiger Woods

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T9 T23 71 T65 Win T19 Win

Hasn’t made an official PGA Tour start since finishing 68th at the Genesis, he is Tiger Woods and heathy which is big news, has won five times and in his last Memorial start was 9th last year. Still think he will play good and get a top-20 but not a win.

Webb Simpson

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T67 T11 CUT CUT T7 CUT T48

Won at RBC Heritage and was T-8th at Travelers, the only question is if he can play at Muirfield Village. Only had one top-ten at the Memorial, T-7th in 2011 he doesn’t play regularly in this event so he may think his game suits the course.

Daniel Berger

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
67 CUT

Returning to the PGA Tour after three weeks off won at Colonial and T-3rd at RBC Heritage. Never played well at Memorial, missed the cut in 2015, and 67th in 2018. Seems to struggle on bentgrass of his 25 starts on courses with bent has only finished in the top-ten seven times.

Rickie Fowler

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T14 T8 T2 CUT CUT CUT T37 T52 T22 2

He switched back to his old irons a couple of weeks back, showed some promise with a T-22nd last week, and basically Rickie plays his best when you least expect it.

Jason Day

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
CUT T44 T15 T27 CUT T37 T41 CUT T33 T27 CUT

Hs a player we have forgotten most of the year, but his T-7th last week at the Workday, you have to consider, his back seems to be solid.

Long shots that could come through:

Kevin Streelman

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
4 T44 T13 T8 T18 CUT CUT CUT T7 T33 CUT

After missing the cut at Colonial and Harbour Town was 2nd at Travelers and T-7th at Workday. Has played well at Muirfield Village, was 4th last year and T-8th in 2016. Between last year’s Memorial start and last week at Workday Streelman is 24 under at Muirfield Village.

Billy Horschel

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T9 CUT CUT T11 T15 T41

Has played well at Memorial and was T-9th last year at Muirfield Village and T-7th last week at Workday.

Ian Poulter

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
T53 T53

He plays well at Memorial and was T-5th last week at Workday.

Worst Bets:

Jon Rahm

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
CUT

Game seems stuck in 2nd gear, did have his best start since the restart, was T-27th last week at Workday shooting a final round 64. Only played once at Muirfield Village missing the cut.

Justin Rose

2020 ’19 ’18 ’17 ’16 ’15 ’14 ’13 ’12 ’11 ’10 ’09 ’08
13 T6 2 CUT T8 8 CUT Win CUT T2

After we thought he recaptured his game last month after switching back to his TaylorMade clubs, but he missed his last two cuts at Travelers and Workday.

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