May 09, 2014
By Jeff Shain, PGATOUR.COM
- Dustin Johnson owns a pair of top-10s in four previous appearances at the HP Byron Nelson. (Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
• FULL FIELD: HP Byron Nelson Championship
• COURSE: TPC Four Seasons Resort, 7,166 yards, par 70. Originally laid out by Jay Morrish in 1983, the course underwent a major overhaul in 2007 by D.A. Weibring and Steve Wolfard. The new layout has large, undulating greens, encouraging players to use slopes to work their shots closer to the pin – but with runoffs and closely mown areas just off the putting surface that will penalize poor shots. Weibring/Wolfard also did extensive tree landscaping that brings creeks and ponds more into play. The 18th hole features a unique “water cascade” that extends from the landing area to the green.
• FEDEXCUP: Winner receives 500 points.
• CHARITY: The Momentous Institute, which works with troubled and at-risk children and their families in the DFW Metroplex with a focus on behavioral therapy and academic excellence. The tournament has raised nearly $130 million since its inception.
• FIELD WATCH: Dallas native Jordan Spieth, No. 7 in the world rankings in his second PGA TOUR season, joins recent Nelson winners Jason Dufner (2012) and Keegan Bradley (2011) in a lineup that features nine of the top 25 in this week’s rankings. No. 5 Matt Kuchar holds the highest slot. … Dallas resident and 2007 champion Scott Verplank returns for his 27th start in the event, tying Ben Crenshaw for third on the all-time list. Lanny Wadkins and Tom Watson each have 28. … U.S. Junior Amateur champ Scottie Scheffler, who lives in nearby Highland Park, gets his first PGA TOUR taste at age 17.
• 72-HOLE RECORD: 261, Rory Sabbatini (2009).
• 18-HOLE RECORD: 60, Arron Oberholser (2nd round, 2006 at Cottonwood Valley GC), Keegan Bradley (1st round, 2013 at TPC Four Seasons).
• LAST YEAR: A roller-coaster final day left Sang Moon Bae with his first PGA TOUR win, but only after squandering a four-shot lead with 10 holes to play and steadying himself down the stretch. The South Korean pro overtook Bradley with four birdies in a five-hole stretch of the front nine, but a double bogey at No. 9 and bogey one hole later closed the gap again. Bae’s birdie at No. 16 broke the tie, finishing with a 1-under-par 69. Bradley, who led each of the first three rounds after an opening 60, closed with a 72.
• STORYLINES: Spieth, who made news in 2010 when he tied for 16th as a high-school junior, figures to draw the largest galleries at Four Seasons. Though still seeking his first win of 2014, he’s just a month removed from finishing runner-up in his Masters debut. … Patrick Cantlay, once the world No. 1 amateur, seeks to end an eight-month layoff caused by a stress fracture in his back. The former UCLA standout hasn’t teed it up since taking runner-up at the Web.com Tour Finals opener last August, good enough to earn a PGA TOUR card. … Former World No. 1 David Duval, whose tie for 25th in New Orleans was his best in 2 ½ years, tries to build on that momentum.
• SHORT CHIPS: Nine of the Byron Nelson’s past 14 winners have done it while recording all four rounds in the 60s, including Bae last year. Bradley was the last to take the crown with a round in the 70s. … Bae’s victory also denied Bradley a chance to become just the third man to win the Nelson wire-to-wire. Mark Hayes did it in 1976, duplicated by Tom Watson four years later. … Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel accepted invitations to two Nelson pro-ams – if the Cleveland Browns free him up. Cleveland took Manziel with the 22nd pick of Thursday’s NFL draft.
• TELEVISION: Thursday-Friday, 3-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel). Saturday-Sunday, 1-2:30 p.m. (GC), 3-6 p.m. (CBS).
• RADIO: Thursday-Sunday, noon-6 p.m. (PGA TOUR Radio on SiriusXM and PGATOUR.com).