Tuesday, May 10 (all times ET)
12:30 p.m. – Bubba Watson
1 p.m. – Mark O’Meara
1:30 p.m. -- Phil Mickelson
2 p.m. – Charl Schwartzel
2:30 p.m. – Adam Scott
3 p.m. – Luke Donald
3:45 p.m. – Graeme McDowell
Wednesday, May 11 (all times ET)
9:30 a.m. – Jerry Pate
11 a.m. – Tim Clark
11:30 a.m. – Lucas Glover
Here is a list of players scheduled to appear in the media center this week at the Wells Fargo Championship:
Martin Kaymer, Tuesday, 9:30 a.m. ET
Rory McIlroy, Tuesday, 10 a.m. ET
Mark Wilson, Tuesday, 11 a.m. ET
Tommy Gainey, Tuesday, 1 p.m. ET
Jimmie Johnson, Tuesday, 2:30 p.m. ET
Bubba Watson, Wednesday, after 7:30 a.m. pro-am
Dustin Johnson, Wednesday, after 9:18 a.m. pro-am
Sean Martin from Golfweek and Michael Collins of the PGA TOUR Network on SiriusXM debate the greatest final rounds, the best player in the world right now, and the tastiest stop on the PGA TOUR. Watch
Of course, we want your take as well. Your comments are welcome in the space below.
By Stan Awtrey, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent
HILTON HEAD, S.C. -- Matt Kuchar doesn’t finish in the top 10 every week. It just seems that way. So it was news when the Georgia Tech graduate tied for 27th at the Masters, only the second time in nine events this season that he’s been outside the top 20 and only the third time he’s been outside the top 10.
"I just need to get a little sharper," said Kuchar, who is back in the field at The Heritage after taking last week off. "It’s one of the fun things of the game of golf is there’s no limit to how good you can get."
So Kuchar is working on his short game, in particular, his wedges. He said that aspect hasn’t been as sharp as in previous years. He pointed to the short game of Ryder Cup colleague Steve Stricker and his ability around the greens that he’d like to emulate.
"And there are areas like inside 120 yards, and there’s no reason why we shouldn’t all be great," he said. "Always like to be better."
Kuchar added an extra degree of loft on his putter, but didn’t alter the length. He said he will continue to make some changes, "May even fiddle with a couple of different putter heads" to make sure the club is right for him.
Kuchar continues to give a lot of credit to coach Chris O’Connell. "He’s making me have a better swing," Kuchar said. "His goal is to take out as much timing as possible from my golf swing. And we’re on the right track."
This is the eighth trip to Harbour Town for Kuchar, whose best finish was a tie for seventh in 2008. He tied for 14th a year ago with a closing round 68.
"I’d like to just keep playing really well," Kuchar said. "Golf is such a funny game. I think all of us know, from the very best professionals to the weekend warriors, that you never know what you’re going to have that next day. I’ve been fortunate to keep some good golf going for a decent stretch now and I’d like to continue it."
By Stan Awtrey, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent
HILTON HEAD, S.C. -- Has it really been a week since Jason Day nearly won the Masters? It has been on the calendar, but it still seems like yesterday to the young Australian.
"It’s been a roll straight after the Masters," Day said. "I tried to relax as good as I could."
Day nearly won his Masters debut about 10 days ago. A
final-round 68 left him two shots behind winner Charl Schwartzel,
but the performance under pressure raised his profile and
expectations. So Day spent his "off week" working a few corporate
events and answering requests from the media.
"I had to do an outing on Thursday, had another outing Saturday and flew here on Sunday," Day said. "I haven’t had actually time to decompress as of yet."
Day said he learned a lot from his brush with a Green Jacket. Most important, he said, was preparation.
"When you come into a tournament, it’s all about preparation, exactly where you need to place the ball, knowing that your body is working great," Day said. "It was my first Masters experience, but I felt like I prepared as best I could."
And Day isn’t plagued by lingering "what-if" doubts. He played well the final round, but got beat when Schwartzel birdied the final four holes.
"Obviously, I was nervous, starting the final day there," Day said. "But I just knew if I hung around, I would come close. If I didn’t birdie the last two holes, I still would have played great, I still would have finished 10 under and would have played great for the week. But to finish the way I did, I couldn’t have done it any better."
This is his third appearance at The Heritage. He closed with a 67 last year and tied for 22nd.
From The Heritage's Facebook page:
The 43rd annual Heritage on Hilton Head Island got underway with a BOOM! Defending Champion Jim Furyk used a traditional hickory golf club to tee off into the Calibogue Sound in unison with a cannon shot. The Heritage Classic Foundation tradition began at the first tournament held in 1969.
It's a refrain heard many times by many people on TOUR: "If only they could putt." But for all the good-ballstriker bad-putter labels out there, none of them have Boo Weekley's stats when it comes to ball-striking. On paper, he's still the best out there, two years after seeing his career threatened by a shoulder injury.
Weekley, without a top-10 since a tie for ninth at The Greenbrier Classic last August, heads to this week's The Heritage leading the TOUR in Total Driving, the combination of Driving Distance and Driving Accuracy. Here's the kicker: He's 16th in distance and 21st in accuracy, putting him well ahead of second-place John Merrick, who is 35th in distance and 23rd in accuracy. Not surprisingly, Weekley is fifth in Greens in Regulation Percentage.
But his putting, as usual, is holding him back, and he's tried everything he can to fix it. He's gone to different putter with a different length, but it hasn't helped much. Weekley has never ranked in the top 100 for putting, and this year, he's missed a large number of his putts inside five feet (8.55 percent). That puts him last on TOUR.
Where is all this leading? Weekley's only two PGA TOUR wins have both come at Harbour Town, which arguably emphasizes ball-striking more than any course on TOUR. Its tiny greens don't leave a lot of 60-footers, so the effects of three-putting are minimized.
That doesn't mean the short game is deemphasized; far from it. Because of the small greens, the wedge game is vital, and that is why great scramblers like Luke Donald and Jim Furyk usually do well here. When Weekley won here in 2007, he did so after chipping in twice from off the green on the back nine in the final round.
If Weekley can get the putter going this week (or any week), watch out.
Here is how Weekley has matched up on TOUR in several categories in 2011:
|Total Driving||Greens in Regulation||Putting Average||Putts per round||Putting: 3-5 feet|
HUMBLE, Texas -- New old putter. New grip. New course.
Two-time U.S. Open champ Retief Goosen hopes that’ll do the trick this week at the Shell Houston Open. And, maybe at next week’s Masters, too.
“I think that's the main thing,’’ he said. “You know, I've always done well at Augusta playing the week before when we had the event at Atlanta, and since that was moved, I don't really do that well at Augusta. So I feel playing here hopefully this week will give me the feeling you need to have going into Augusta.’’
What drew him in was the course setup -- fast greens, shaved runoff areas – that emulates conditions players will see next week.
“A lot of the players said it's as close as you can get it to Augusta settings or grass, I should say,’’ he said. “So that's definitely -- that definitely made me decide to play this year.’’
Goosen finished third at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship earlier this year and shared 12th at the Northern Trust Open, but his game still needs work. So, he’s changing his grip and going back to the YES! putter he used to win both of his U.S. Opens.
“Hopefully,’’ he said, “get some good feelings on the greens this week.”
His other concern? Driving.
“The game is not great, not really done much this year,’’ Goosen said. “Couple of good events but not really playing that well. I got my coach here this week, so we're working on a few things, a little bit of a grip change. I think this week, which is always a bit hard, you know, to get comfortable on, but changing my grip slightly this week and hopefully, you know, come tomorrow, start hitting a few good shots and give you some confidence going into next week.’’ -- Melanie Hauser
Jhonny Vegas has the name of a rock star and the appeal, especially this week in Houston.
This week for Vegas should be a lot like his week at the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship at TPC Blue Monster at Doral, where there’s a large Venezuelan population in the surrounding communities. In Houston, Vegas will have plenty of friends and family on hand for support. He’s also familiar with Redstone Golf Club.
“I've been able to play quite often and it's a course that I think suits my game really well,” said Vegas, who earlier this year won in just his fifth career start. “It's such a long golf course, you have to hit it long and straight and if you're able to do that, you have pretty good advantage over a lot of people.”
While Vegas isn’t exactly the straightest driver of the golf ball -- he’s 178th on the PGA TOUR in fairways hit at just over 51 percent -- he does indeed hit it long, averaging 294.6 yards off the tee (25th on TOUR).
Vegas has also had a remarkable rookie season and is an early candidate for Rookie of the Year honors with four top-25s in nine starts, including his victory at the Bob Hope Classic.
Not bad for a guy who showed up at Texas barely able to speak English as a 17-year-old.
But the college experience was critical to Vegas’ development on and off the course.
”One, because it just gave me a lot of tools to prepare myself for this,” Vegas said. “For being here on the PGA TOUR because I was able to learn the language a little bit better and I was able to develop my game to a good extent and prepare myself a little bit more for the PGA TOUR. Just a great opportunity.”
While Vegas has had to learn to deal with everything from learning the language to more recently managing the demands on his time, his confidence hasn’t wavered.
“I knew that I could win here,” Vegas said. “I didn't know it was going to be that quick. But you never know when things are going to happen.
“I'm going to go ahead and try to win. That's kind of what I do every week. I know it doesn't happen every time. I feel my game is headed the right way, been playing good, some up and down weeks but still have confidence and playing great. We're going to go ahead and win. Only God knows what's going to happen.” -- Brian Wacker
Lee Westwood talks about his goals this week and the overall strength and unpredictability of pro golf.