By Fred Albers, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- A rain-saturated Sunday tested everyone’s patience. Some players were affected more than others.
Consider the plight of Rickie Fowler.
He opened the BMW Championship with a 77, going 6 over in his first four holes. Fowler battled back on Friday and was 7 under for the round before a tough finish that included a triple bogey on the 18th, resulting in a 68. He shot a 68 again on Saturday and was 2 under through four holes in the final round, standing on the fifth tee.
The fifth hole is the toughest driving hole at Conway Farms: A 447-yard par 4 with out of bounds left and a lateral hazard on the right.
The rain pelted Fowler in the face as the wind lashed into him. Surely, play would be halted at any moment but it was Fowler’s turn to play and he swung. The ball took a quick turn to the right and rode a gust of wind into the hazard.
Just as the ball disappeared into the woods, the horn sounded halting play.
Golf was never meant to be fair, but at times the game seems randomly cruel.
Bubble boy: Dustin Johnson will anxiously await scores to be posted. He finished at 9 over and his status for the TOUR Championship presented by Coca-Cola fluctuates on every shot from others in the field. A bogey from one competitor pushes Johnson into the field of 30, while a birdie moves him outside that magic number. Johnson finished with disappointing flair. He tried to reach the par-5, 18th hole with his second shot from 247 yards, only to splash it into the water and make bogey. Johnson said he was not thinking of the TOUR Championship on the approach, he was only trying to post the best score possible and hit the shot heavy.
Professional: I don’t know if there is a more professional player on the PGA TOUR than Lee Westwood. He dresses, plays and comports himself with the highest of standards. The Englishman played with an injured back and played poorly, finishing 12 shots over par. It would have been so easy to withdraw in the final round -- the wet, cold weather made every swing painful with an already injured back, but Westwood honored his commitment to the tournament and fellow competitors. I admire that.
Wet weather: The ball will be played as it lies for the entire final round. PGA TOUR officials considered preferred lies before the round began but the weather forecast was not as dire as what materialized. Mud balls were all over the course but the “casual water” rule provided relief. Virtually every step a player took produced a puddle of water, so the ball could be lifted, cleaned and dropped.
Fred Albers is a course reporter for SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio. For more information on SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio, click here
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- With the completion of the final round of the BMW Championship pushed back until Monday, here is some of the key coverage information you should know:
COMPETITION: Play resumes at 9 a.m. ET (8 a.m. local) at Conway Farms. The final group of Jim Furyk and Steve Stricker is expected to tee off at 10:40 a.m. ET.
LIVE STREAM: Golf Channel's online stream wil be available on PGATOUR.COM starting at 10 a.m. ET.
ONLINE: PGATOUR.COM will have live scoring and live FedExCup points projections, as well as live updates in TOUR Report and the latest video from Conway Farms.
TV: Golf Channel will provide coverage starting at 10 a.m. ET until the completion of play.
RADIO: PGA TOUR Radio will provide coverage starting at 10 a.m. ET until completion of play.
IF YOU'RE GOING: Tickets for Sunday's final round will be honored on Monday. In addition, one-day tickets for $55 will be available at the box office. Gates will open at 8 a.m. ET (7 a.m. local). Some of the hospitality venues will be open.
Vince Pellegrino, the vice president for tournaments of the Western Golf Association, anticipates that a sizable crowd will be in attendance.
"With the way the week has gone, I don't think you can ever underestimate the size of the crowds that are going to come out -- even if it's a Monday -- considering the leaderboard," he said. "I think we're anticipating having a good-sized crowd."
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Heavy rain twice interrupted play in the BMW Championship on Sunday before it was suspended for the remainder of the day.
The final round will resume Monday at 9 a.m. ET. Leader Jim Furyk and Steve Stricker will tee off in the final pairing at 10:40 a.m.
Golf Channel and Sirius XM PGA TOUR Radio will have live coverage beginning at 10 a.m. Tickets from Sunday's round will also be honored.
Roughly an inch of rain fell throughout the morning and afternoon at Conway Farms, where puddles formed on a number of fairways and greens.
"We did everything we possibly could to try to get this thing in," said PGA TOUR Vice President of Rules and Competition Slugger White. "Unfortunately when we started at 1:30 (local time) when we got back out there again and we played for an hour, when we went back out at about 4, it wasn't near what we expected. That was the reason there was no sense in going back out. It drains pretty well when it gets going, but Mother Nature just won't give us a break here as far as shutting this faucet off."
Twenty-two players in the 70-man field failed to even tee off with play first being suspended at 11 a.m. ET for 3 1/2 hours and then again just before 3:30 p.m. as heavy rains moved into the area again.
Only six players -- Rory McIlroy, Kevin Chappell, Dustin Johnson, Lee Westwood, Charley Hoffman and Scott Piercy -- finished their rounds. Of that group, McIlroy, Chappell, Westwood, Hoffman and Piercy were all eliminated from the FedExCup Playoffs. Johnson is currently projected in the 30th spot.
Monday's forecast calls for light early morning showers but the weather is expected to improve throughout the day.
This marks the 22nd tournament to be delayed by weather this season and the third forced to a Monday finish. The last tournament to finish (unscheduled) on a Monday was the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by MasterCard in March.
By Mike McAllister, PGATOUR.COM
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- It's safe to assume that at least one player from outside the top 30 will bust the bubble and advance to next week's TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola.
That's because this week's bubble boy, Lee Westwood, has already finished his round after shooting a 3-over 74 and is at 12 over for the tournament. Westwood, who played this week despite injury issues because he wanted to make it to East Lake, is currently projected to fall from 30th to 44th in the points standings.
The player who is currently inside the bubble is Nick Watney, who is tied for eighth on the leaderboard and has yet to start his round. Watney is projected to move from 34th to 27th, but he's in a precarious spot. He must try to improve or maintain his position to give himself a chance at advancing.
If Watney drops down the leaderboard, it could open the door for others to move in.
Kevin Stadler, Charles Howell III, Jimmy Walker, Ryan Moore, John Merrick, Rory Sabbatini, Luke Donald and Rickie Fowler are all players outside the 30 who could still make a move inside it.
Fowler is 2 under through his first four holes and is currently projected at 32.
If more players outside the bubble play well, they could knock out others besides Westwood.
Dustin Johnson came into the week 23rd in points but he posted four rounds over par and finished at 9 over and in the bottom 10 of the leaderboard. Johnson is now projected at 30th and his fate rests in the hands of others.
"I played pretty solid all week," Johnson said after shooting his 1-over 72 on Sunday. "Rolled the ball good, just nothing went in the hole."
Johnson said he was not planning to monitor the FedExCup points projections for the rest of Monday's final round.
"I'm not really going to watch too much," Johnson said. "We're just going to have to see what happens. Hopefully I make it, but if I don't, get 'em next time."
Harris English started 28th and is in the middle of the leaderboard. English is 2 under through seven holes, so he can still solidify his spot, but right now he's projected to fall to 29th.
Of the six players who have finished their rounds, only Johnson is projected to be inside the top 30. Players who have finished their rounds and aren't projected to East Lake include Westwood, Kevin Chappell, Rory McIlroy, Charley Hoffman and Scott Piercy.
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Play has been suspended for a second time today at the BMW Championship.
With heavy rain pounding Conway Farms, the horn sounded at 3:28 p.m. ET and players were pulled off the golf course as puddles began forming on several fairways and greens, making the course unplayable at the moment.
The round was initially suspended at 11 a.m. ET and delayed just over 3 1/2 hours.
Leader Jim Furyk and Steve Stricker were scheduled to tee off at 5:10 p.m. after the first stoppage, but that will be pushed back even later now.
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- The final round of the BMW Championship has resumed after a 3 hour, 31 minute delay.
Jim Furyk has a one-stroke lead over Steve Stricker and the two are now scheduled to tee off at 5:10 p.m. ET.
Only four players had completed their round before play was halted at 11 a.m. following heavy rains in the area.
Furyk is looking for his first win in three years.
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- The final round of the BMW Championship will resume at 2:30 p.m. ET.
Play was initially suspended 11 a.m. because of heavy rains that flooded the golf course. Only four players were able to finish their round.
The last tee time will be at 5:10 p.m., which means the final round will not be completed until Monday even if there are no further delays.
Due to the delay, NBC will hand off final-round coverage to Golf Channel at 6 p.m. Golf Channel will continue coverage until play is suspended due to darkness (approximately 8 p.m.). Final-round coverage will continue until conclusion on Golf Channel Monday morning (time TBD). SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio will also have coverage.
Jim Furyk has a one-stroke lead over Steve Stricker, while Brandt Snedeker is another stroke back.
A total of 22 tournaments have now been delayed by weather at one point or another this year, including all three FedExCup Playoffs events.
This will also be the third (unscheduled) Monday finish of the year, the most since 2010 when there were also three. In 2009, four events finished on a Monday.
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- For the second straight day, Rory McIlroy finished his round in just over 2 1/2 hours, and the fast pace couldn't have come at a better time.
The horn sounded as Mclroy was playing the 18th hole, signaling a weather delay as heavy rains saturated Conway Farms. McIlroy finished the hole, getting up-and-down to save par for his second straight 68.
McIlroy was one of only four players to complete the final round before play was suspended.
Kevin Chappell, Charley Hoffman and Scott Piercy also completed their rounds.
All four, however, are eliminated from the FedExCup Playoffs.
McIlroy needed a top-eight finish this week to secure a spot in the top 30 in the FedExCup standings to reach next week's TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola.
Sunday also marked the first time that McIlroy carded consecutive rounds in the 60s on the PGA TOUR this season. He was in last place coming into the weekend after opening with rounds of 78 and 77.
Among the highlights for the former world No. 1 in the final round: A hole-out for eagle from 164 yards on the 12th hole.
McIlroy will now have the next four weeks off before heading to Korea to play.
The horn blew at 11 a.m. ET on Conway Farms, suspending a final round that was already plagued by a hard rain.
Officials are hoping to provide an update around 1 p.m. ET. The leaders were originally scheduled to tee off at 1:40 p.m. ET.
Thirty-two of the 70-player field were on the course when the delay hit. Four players, including Rory McIlroy, were already done by the time the horn blew. McIlroy shot 68 for the second consecutive round -- it was the first time all year he'd broken 70 in a back-to-back rounds in the same tournament in 2013.
Stay tuned for updates.