By Mike McAllister, PGATOUR.COM
This file updated at 9:04 p.m. with updated tee time information
IRVING, Texas -- Chad Campbell said his backyard in the nearby suburb of Colleyville is about 500 yards from the backyard of his fellow PGA TOUR-playing neighbor, Ryan Palmer.
Palmer put the distance in golf terms.
"Probably a 5-iron away," he said.
Campbell and Palmer first met during their high school days in west Texas -- Campbell was born in Andrews, Palmer in Amarillo. Palmer and Judd Burkett, Campbell's caddie, played on the same high school team at Amarillo High and were next-door neighbors at one point when Palmer first moved to the Metroplex. Palmer's caddie James Edmondson is also part of the close-knit group.
"He and Judd are two of my closest friends out here, for sure," Palmer said.
But the conversation doesn't always turn to golf. Asked if he and Palmer discussed last year's HP Byron Nelson Championship, in which Palmer lost in a playoff to Keegan Bradley, Campbell said, "Not too much ... We're definitely friends and talk but not really about anything in particular."
Although Palmer and Campbell live in the same neighborhood, it's mostly at PGA TOUR events where they hang together. "I never see him at home," Palmer said. "It's always on the road."
"I hope it works out because it will be fun with James and Judd and Chad and I," Palmer said after his round. "We're real close and the family and friends we have in town, we could be the popular group tomorrow."
When Jason Dufner grabbed the late late in the day, it appeared Palmer and Campbell would not be together. But because so many players made the 36-hole cut – 79 in all – tournament officials opted to switch the usual twosomes on Saturday to threesomes going off both the first and 10th tees.
That means Campbell and Palmer will be together in the final group along with Dufner. You can expect the hometown fans to cheer on the chasers.
“It’s nice to have that support out there,” Campbell said.
And nice to be paired with a neighbor.
The pairings have been unveiled for this week’s PGA TOUR Matchups Game on Facebook. You can check out the Matchups for the HP Byron Nelson Championship below, or on the PGA TOUR’s Facebook page.
Participants have until 6 a.m. ET Thursday to make their picks. Log on to the PGA TOUR Facebook page and click the Matchups link to make your picks for this week, or to sign up.
|Matt Kuchar vs. Keegan Bradley||Last week's champ vs. last year's champ|
|Phil Mickelson vs. Ernie Els||Two World Golf Hall of Famers at Byron's place|
|Adam Scott vs. Jason Day||Two Aussies, two former champs in this event|
|Jhonattan Vegas vs. Ryan Palmer||Both have strong Texas ties, and both are bombers|
|Jason Dufner vs. John Huh||Both scored their first career wins earlier in 2012|
Ryan Palmer talks about his play in the 2012 Zurich Classic with John Maginnes from SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio.
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
AVONDALE, La. -- Sometimes it's the little things that make a big difference.
In Ryan Palmer's case, a new putter grip has given him renewed confidence and it showed on Saturday as he made nine birdies en route to a 64 that tied the course record at TPC Louisiana. More importantly, Palmer now finds himself among the leaders at 13 under entering Sunday's final round.
Palmer was the third person this week to shoot 8 under and the sixth person to have a share of the course record. He had a shot at owning it alone, but Palmer put his second shot at the par-5 18th into a greenside bunker where what he called a "bad rake job" proved costly as he left it in the bunker and made par.
Still, he couldn't be too disappointed. "It's one of those deals you get a bad break here and there, made par and it was fine," Palmer said.
Besides, the Texan was thrilled with the way his putting came around on Saturday after he switched to a Super Stroke Red grip. He's been consistently solid tee-to-green but his putting was the key to the third round. He used just 24 in the third round after needing 30 and 29 in the two previous days.
"It was awesome," Palmer said. "I knew it was coming. I've been hitting the ball so good lately, just haven't been making the putts. Did some work Tuesday ... for quite awhile, switched to the smallest grip. It's helped. The last few days trying to get comfortable with it and today the flood gates opened up."
Palmer said the new grip on his Odyssey putter causes him to stick his hands out a little more. "I'm a forward press kind of putter and I took it out, forward press out," he said. "I'm seeing the ball roll a lot more smooth, lot more truer. So, finally get to the middle of the hole."
When he teed off on Saturday Palmer told his caddy he was hoping to get with three or four shots at the end of the day. Turns out, he did considerably better.
"I don't think I need a course record-style round (on Sunday),"
Palmer said. "My idea going into today, I need to get to 18 total
for the next two days and I might have a chance. So, I might be
three, four back but today is obviously moving today for a lot of
guys. Tomorrow it gets a little more tense.
"I'm not going to put a number. ... It's probably going to take 18 to get there 5, 6-under, see what happens."
Palmer played with Sean Peyton in Wednesday’s pro-am and the embattled New Orleans Saints coach was in his buddy’s gallery on Friday. Palmer said he expected some words of wisdom prior to the final round.
"We've become good friends the last few years," palmer said. "Played together last year. He treated a couple of us to Green Bay last year, sideline and everything. ... Maybe (I'll) get him back here to watch tomorrow."
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Ryan Palmer knew the shadows were lengthening on Thursday afternoon.
At the same time, though, he still had work to do. The Texan was going low at TPC Scottsdale and he wanted to finish strong.
That's exactly what Palmer did, shooting consecutive 32s to get to the clubhouse at 7 under and one stroke ahead of Webb Simpson after the first round of the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Palmer surged past the former Wake Forest All-American when he birdied three straight holes on his second nine.
Turns out, Palmer's final putt at the ninth hole dropped minutes before play was suspended by darkness at 8:05 p.m. ET. A total of 42 players were stranded on the course and must return at 9:30 a.m. ET to finish off their rounds.
Mother Nature permitting, the second round will also begin at 9:30 a.m. ET. But Thursday began with an hour's frost delay and the forecast for Friday is for even chillier temperatures.
"Probably about my last three or four holes, you could tell it
was getting closer and closer so I was trying not to worry about
it," Palmer said. "I knew I was going to be here in the morning for
the second round, so I wasn't worried about if we had to come back
and restart. So I didn't think about it and I just kept hitting
shots and sticking to my game plan.
"The last putt was a little dark I can say, but I'm glad to be done, and now I can get going in tomorrow's routine. Instead of getting ready for one hole, I can get ready for the whole day. It's going to be a nice night."
Among the players who will be returning to finish their first rounds are Bubba Watson, Spencer Levin and Jason Dufner, who lost last year’s playoff to Mark Wilson. Watson and Levin are 5 under through 15 holes while Dufner has only played 13.
FedExCup leader Johnson Wagner is 3 under through 16 holes. He’s playing with Wilson, who is 1 under, and Brandt Snedeker, who won last week’s Farmers Insurance Open and is even for the day.
By Melanie Hauser, PGATOUR.COM
BETHESDA, Md. -- Don't look now, but Bo Van Pelt has moved onto the leader board.
One of three Americans to finish in the top 10 at the Masters -- Tiger Woods and Ryan Palmer were the others -- Van Pelt is 3 under for the day and 2 under for the tournament through 10 holes. Van Pelt finished in a tie for eighth at the Masters. His best finish this year was a third at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial.