September 12, 2010
LEMONT, Ill.. -- The top 30 are set for THE TOUR Championship presented by Coca-Cola, a tournament that also will decide the FedExCup.
Of the 30 players headed to East Lake in two weeks, only the top five in points are guaranteed the FedExCup should one of them win THE TOUR Championship. Dustin Johnson, the winner of Sunday's BMW Championship, moved into the top five, as did runner-up Paul Casey.
They will join Barclays winner Matt Kuchar, Deutsche Bank winner Charley Hoffman and Steve Stricker as the only players who control their own destiny in terms of winning the FedExCup and the $10 million bonus.
FedExCup points are reset before THE TOUR Championship in order to give any player in the top five the FedExCup title should he manage to win at East Lake.
"To have a shot to win it, you can't ask for anything else," Johnson said. "You know, that's the goal coming into the Playoffs. I knew I was in a good situation. You definitely want to be in that top five because if you win and you're in the top five, then you get the $10 million.
"That would look nice in the bank account."
The other 25 players in the field, meanwhile, still have a shot to win the FedExCup, depending on how the leaderboard at East Lake shakes out. The higher you are in the FedExCup standings, the better your chances of winning the FedExCup title at East Lake.
But it's the top five who have the best shot. That's why Casey, while disappointed not to win on Sunday, at least could look ahead with enthusiasm.
"The goal at the beginning of the week was to make THE TOUR Championship, so I guess I did that," Casey said. "That's a nice consolation. I didn't know (about the top five). I actually didn't even think about it coming down the stretch.
"At least I've now got a chance to control my destiny, as they say."
Meanwhile, Kuchar, who took over the No. 1 spot at The Barclays, hopes to play East Lake a couple of times during the off-week. It's a couse he's played 30 or 40 times, even though this is the first time he will have played it during THE TOUR Championship.
"I'll actually get a chance to play East Lake a couple more times being at home," Kuchar said. "I'm looking forward to getting a few more practice rounds in and get some home course knowledge."
No matter who has the advantage, there will be a new face as the FedExCup champ. Two-time and defending FedExCup champ Tiger Woods did not make the top 30. Neither did 2008 winner Vijay Singh. Both were officially eliminated Sunday at Cog Hill.
|The Top Five|
|Having a spot in the top five in the FedExCup points is huge going into THE TOUR Championship presented by Coca-Cola, since it means you can control your own destiny. Win at East Lake and you win the FedExCup. Here is how the top five looked throughout the Playoffs:|
|After BMW ||1. Matt Kuchar ||2. Dustin Johnson ||3. Charley Hoffman ||4. Steve Stricker ||5. Paul Casey|
|After Deutsche Bank ||1. Matt Kuchar ||2. Charley Hoffman ||3. Steve Stricker ||4. Jason Day ||5. Luke Donald|
|After Barclays ||1. Matt Kuchar ||2. Steve Stricker ||3. Martin Laird ||4. Justin Rose ||5. Ernie Els|
|Entering Playoffs ||1. Ernie Els ||2. Steve Stricker ||3. Jim Furyk ||4. Phil Mickelson ||5. Justin Rose|
|Who moved into the top 30?|
|These players started this week outide the top 30 but moved inside the bubble after the BMW Championship and will advance to THE TOUR Championship:|
|Player ||Current ||Previous ||Comment|
|Kevin Na ||20 ||41 ||Cited his approach shot at the 16th on Sunday as the key to moving on|
|K.J. Choi ||23 ||52 ||Choi and Na show the value of one high finish in the Playoffs|
|Ryan Moore ||26 ||58 ||Said he finally "played well enough at the right time" with a T3 finish|
|Camilo Villegas ||25 ||33 ||His last four finishes at BMW: T7, Win, T8 and T11 on Sunday|
|Who dropped out of the top 30?|
|These players started this week inside the top 30 but fell outside the bubble after the BMW Championship and have been eliminated from the Playoffs:|
|Player ||Current ||Previous ||Comment|
|Bill Haas ||31 ||28 ||Shot 2-over 74 on Sunday, with two bogeys in his final six holes|
|Rickie Fowler ||32 ||25 ||Hit his approach into the hazard at 72nd hole; bogey proved costly|
|J.B. Holmes ||34 ||24 ||Started with a 77 on Thursday, ended with a 78 on Sunday|
|Rory McIlroy ||36 ||29 ||Never gave himself a chance after shooting 76-74 in first two rounds|
|Biggest Movers this week|
| ||58 ||26 ||32 spots ||A disappoint 73 for the third-round leader but he made the East Lake field with a tie for third|
| ||52 ||23 ||29 spots ||Hadn't done much lately before Cog Hill, but he picked the right time to play well|
| ||41 ||20 ||21 spots ||Steady all week, and a couple of key birdies in the last five holes proved vital to his future|
| ||21 ||5 ||16 spots ||Had the tournament in his grasp early on back nine, but gets top five as consolation prize|
| ||16 ||2 ||14 spots ||Winning the BMW gives him a great shot to win the FedExCup title -- and maybe Player of the Year|
|Steve Stricker ||4 ||Started Playoffs in top 5; will go to East Lake the same way|
|Ernie Els ||8 ||Ranked No. 1 coming into Playoffs, but failed to make an impact|
|Phil Mickelson ||10 ||Had best-ever BMW result with a T8; now time for East Lake defense|
|Jim Furyk ||11 ||T15 at Cog Hill, but he needed a much better finish|
|Tiger Woods ||42 ||Defending FedExCup champ struggled to make anything happen|
|Vijay Singh ||57 ||2008 FedExCup champ had a couple of nice rounds during Playoffs|
|Elimination list after BMW Championship|
|Bill Haas ||31 ||Down 3 ||28|
|Rickie Fowler ||32 ||Down 7 ||25|
|Charlie Wi ||33 ||Up 4 ||37|
|J.B. Holmes ||34 ||Down 10 ||24|
|Vaughn Taylor ||35 ||Down 3 ||32|
|Rory McIlroy ||36 ||Down 7 ||29|
|Brandt Snedeker ||37 ||Down 6 ||31|
|Stewart Cink ||38 ||Down 3 ||35|
|Ian Poulter ||39 ||Up 5 ||44|
|Carl Pettersson ||40 ||Down 1 ||39|
|Anthony Kim ||41 ||Down 7 ||34|
|Tiger Woods ||42 ||Up 9 ||51|
|Tom Gillis ||43 ||Up 5 ||48|
|Marc Leishman ||44 ||Up 13 ||57|
|Michael Sim ||45 ||Up 8 ||53|
|Heath Slocum ||46 ||Down 4 ||42|
|Sean O'Hair ||47 ||Up 3 ||50|
|Rory Sabbatini ||48 ||Down 3 ||45|
|D.J. Trahan ||49 ||Down 13 ||36|
|John Senden ||50 ||Down 12 ||38|
|Brendon de Jonge ||51 ||Down 11 ||40|
|Stuart Appleby ||52 ||Down 9 ||43|
|Brian Davis ||53 ||Down 6 ||47|
|Brian Gay ||54 ||Up 2 ||56|
|David Toms ||55 ||Up 12 ||67|
|Greg Chalmers ||56 ||Up 6 ||62|
|Vijay Singh ||57 ||Up 6 ||63|
|Fredrik Jacobson ||58 ||Down 3 ||55|
|Justin Leonard ||59 ||-- ||59|
|Bryce Molder ||60 ||-- ||60|
|Angel Cabrera ||61 ||Down 12 ||49|
|Jason Bohn ||62 ||Down 16 ||46|
|Matt Jones ||63 ||Up 1 ||64|
|Ricky Barnes ||64 ||Down 10 ||54|
|Jason Dufner ||65 ||-- ||65|
|Tim Petrovic ||66 ||-- ||66|
|Y.E. Yang ||67 ||Down 6 ||61|
|Stephen Ames ||68 ||Up 1 ||69|
|Andres Romero ||69 ||Down 1 ||68|
|Scott Verplank ||70 ||-- ||70|
Here's an in-depth look at the key FedExCup developments after the BMW Championship.