Fantasy preview: The Honda Classic

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February 28, 2012
Rob Bolton, PGATOUR.COM Fantasy Columnist

The first reshuffle of the year occurred following last weekend's doubleheader. If you're in a season-long league and haven't check it out, I update it weekly here. Fantasy valuations have changed considerably for many near the top and bottom.

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Power Rankings
Rob Bolton breaks down The Honda Classic field in this week's Power Rankings.

At last week's World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship, I went 20-12 in the first round of my bracket but posted a dreadful 1-4 in PGA TOUR Matchups on Facebook. That left me a mere 7-8-0 with 14 points on the season. Congratulations to Joesph Gamsy, who went 5-0 to take a commanding eight-point lead in the overall standings with 36 points. Last week's leader, Travis Jacobs, sits alone in second now with 28.

My picks for The Honda Classic:

Rory McIlroy over Lee WestwoodTiger Woods over Ernie Els • Cameron Tringale over Rickie Fowler • Camilo Villegas over Rory Sabbatini • John Huh over Kyle Stanley

Power Rankings Distribution for Yahoo! (rank)

Group A ... Keegan Bradley (7); J.B. Holmes (12); Charles Howell III (14)

Group B ... Rory McIlroy (2); Mark Wilson (3); Lee Westwood (5); Fredrik Jacobson (6); John Rollins (8); Justin Rose (9); Robert Allenby (10); Marc Leishman (11)

Group C ... Ben Crane (1); Charl Schwartzel (4); John Huh (13); Jerry Kelly (15)

Sleepers Distribution for Yahoo! (rank)

Group A ... George McNeill

Group B ... none

Group C ... Ricky Barnes; Matt Every; Padraig Harrington; Rod Pampling; Charlie Wi

On a Roll (Yahoo! Group)

Sang-moon Bae (C) ... Went 3-1 at the Match Play where he was all square with Rory McIlroy through 10 holes of the quarterfinals before the eventual tournament runner-up rattled off three birdies in five holes to eliminate the PGA TOUR rookie. Bae is also 4-for-4 in stroke-play events this year with a season-best T14 at the Humana Challenge.

Jimmy Walker (B) ... No top 35s in three cuts made of four starts at PGA National but he arrives having posted top 10s in his last two starts this season, and three in his last four.

Spencer Levin (A) ... Dating back to last year's FedExCup Playoffs, he's survived 13 consecutive cuts, including seven this year. All but one tournament (BMW Championship) had a cut and he's posted four top 10s in that stretch. Placed T14 at last year's Honda.

Johnson Wagner (C) ... Cooled a bit since starting the year T9-1st-T2 but he hasn't missed a cut in any of his six starts. He's 3-for-4 at PGA National but hasn't cracked a top 35.

Louis Oosthuizen (C) ... Prior to his second-round loss at the Match Play, he strung together seven top 10s in official events. In his Honda debut a year ago, he withdrew prior to the final round due to an illness.

Kevin Stadler (C) ... Making his sixth start in as many weeks but his results have grown progressively better in each. Top 25s in his last three, with a season-best T16 at the Mayakoba.

Ryan Moore (B) ... Heating up. Top 20s in his last two starts, and that includes forgettable final rounds of 72 (Pebble Beach) and 74 (Riviera).

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Rob's Yahoo! lineup
Group A: Keegan Bradley; J.B. Holmes
Group B: Rory McIlroy; Justin Rose; Mark Wilson; Lee Westwood
Group C: Ben Crane; Charl Schwartzel
YAHOO! STATS: 1,026 points; 36,245th place
ONE-AND-DONE: Lee Westwood... 2012 EARNINGS: $338,338.00
DUFFER: Jason Bohn ... 2012 EARNINGS: $148,600.00
2012 PROJECTIONS (All 246 players)
1-50 | 51-100 | 101-150 | 151-200 | 201-246

Greg Owen (C) ... Shared 16th place at the Mayakoba and ninth two weeks prior at Pebble Beach. Posted a T13 here in 2009.

Bobby Gates (C) ... Just one top 45 in six starts (T8, Humana) but he hasn't missed a cut. A 72.83 final-round scoring average has proved costly.

Horses for Courses (Yahoo! Group)

Y.E. Yang (A) ... Off to a bit of a slow start -- remember, he nursed a sore shoulder in December -- but he's a former winner at PGA National (2009) and finished as the runner-up last year, one stroke off Rory Sabbatini's pace.

Camilo Villegas (A) ... Won here in 2010 and shared runner-up honors in 2007. Two top 25s in four starts this season.

Jim Furyk (A) ... Competed at PGA National just once, finishing T31 in the inaugural edition of 2007, but he demands inclusion. While he placed a steady T11 two weeks ago at Riviera, he's currently fifth on TOUR in fairways hit, ninth in scrambling and 14th in adjusted scoring. This week's host course requires the kind of toughness with which he is synonymous.

Justin Leonard (B) ... He's placed T17 in each of the last two years at this event. Tied for eighth place at the Farmers a month ago.

Leaking Oil (Yahoo! Group)

Darren Clarke (C) ... Remains in a slump since winning the British Open. Ignoring his last-place finish at the 12-man Nedbank Golf Challenge in early December, he has just one top 30 in his last 12 starts (T20, Volvo Golf Champions).

Jamie Lovemark (C) and Jason Bohn (C) ... Both have missed their last three cuts.

Danger (Yahoo! Group)

Rory Sabbatini (A) ... As PGATOUR.com's Brian Wacker reported on Tuesday, Sabbatini has employed Rick Smith for some help with his swing. The South African has missed each of his last three cuts and Yahoo! gamers have more than enough options to compensate for the defending champion this week.

Tiger Woods (B) ... Once the Power Rankings published on Monday, it didn't take long for those in disagreement with his omission to share their opinions via email and Twitter. This is how it always plays out, however, as there is no such thing as middle ground on the guy. I have two concerns as it relates to him this week. First, he's getting his initial competitive peek at PGA National. Second, and this will come as no surprise to anyone that observed him bow out in the second round of last week's Match Play: putting. That piggybacked a 31-putt output in the final round at Pebble Beach two weeks prior. (He hit just nine greens that day, too.)

Ernie Els (B) ... He's 4-for-4 at PGA National with a victory in 2008 and a T22 in his title defense the following year, but The Big Easy continues to search for consistency lately. His 5-and-4 win over Luke Donald in the opening round of last week's Match Play may be more of an indictment on Donald's weak form than Els' potential rise.

Graeme McDowell (C) ... Not for the faint of heart. While he tied for sixth here last year and has four third-place finishes in his last 11 starts worldwide (including the 12-man Nedbank Golf Challenge), he's also posted four results outside the top 35 and went 0-1 at the Match Play. However, I'd endorse a bench role on Yahoo! if you burn Charl Schwartzel as well.

Anthony Kim (B) ... Solo second here in 2010 but he's 0-for-4 this year.

Bob Estes (C) ... After meeting the terms of his Major Medical at Pebble Beach to secure status for the remainder of the year, he shot 80-71 at Riviera to miss the cut by six strokes. While I'm always willing to dismiss one week, the balance tips in the other direction due to an 0-for-3 record at PGA National.

Henrik Stenson (C) ... Making his 2012 PGA TOUR debut. Shared 20th place in his last start at the Dubai Desert Classic but allow him at least one start before consider plugging him in. He continues to plummet in the world ranking where he's now 224th.

Medic! (Yahoo! Group)

Robert Garrigus (A) ... Withdrew after one round (79) at Riviera, then withdrew from the Mayakoba early in the week. He's 3-for-3 at PGA National but hasn't cracked a top 45.

Tom Gillis (C) ... A back injury limited him to 18 holes at Riviera two weeks ago. Finished T17 here in 2010.

Hank Kuehne (n/a) ... First start anywhere since June 2007 due to an extended back injury. Still has 18 starts on a Major Medical Extension.

Scott Dunlap (C) ... In the field at the Nationwide Tour's Panama Claro Championship. He withdrew before his second round of the Mayakoba due to a stomach ailment.

Notable WDs (Yahoo! Group)

Retief Goosen (B) and Vijay Singh (C) ... Both are in the field of next week's World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship.

Trevor Immelman (C) ... Will not qualify for the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship for the third straight year

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