Featured Groups: THE NORTHERN TRUST
August 21, 2018
By Staff, PGATOUR.COM
- August 21, 2018
Inside the PGA TOUR
The beat of the PGA TOUR Season heads into FedExCup Playoffs
The FedExCup Playoffs are upon us!
The PGA TOUR’s postseason gets underway Thursday at Ridgewood Country, a historic A.W. Tillinghast design in Paramus, New Jersey. This classic course will be the setting for the top players in the FedExCup standings.
Players are grouped for the first two rounds based on their FedExCup ranking, so that guarantees some star-studded Featured Groups, including the top trio of Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas and Brooks Koepka.
PGA TOUR LIVE’s Thursday and Friday broadcasts will begin at 7:30 a.m. After the Featured Groups, LIVE will transition to Featured Holes coverage of Ridgewood’s par-3 15th and par-5 17th holes. Saturday’s Featured Holes coverage will begin at 1 p.m., while Sunday’s coverage will begin at noon.
PGA TOUR LIVE also can be viewed on Twitter and Facebook Watch. Twitter’s broadcast will begin at 7:30 a.m. on both Thursday and Friday and run for approximately an hour. Facebook Watch will offer weekend coverage from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.
As in past years, we will be conducting a fan vote on Twitter to select a Featured Group on Friday. We will announce the group with the most votes on Thursday’s broadcast.
Here’s a look at this week’s Featured Groups (Note: FedExCup rankings in parentheses; all times Eastern):
Tiger Woods (20), Marc Leishman (22), Tommy Fleetwood (23): The only two-time winner of the FedExCup is back in the Playoffs for the first time in five years. He’ll be joined by one of the stars of the 2017 postseason and an international star making his FedExCup Playoffs debut. Leishman finished sixth in last year’s playoffs after winning the second postseason event, the Dell Technologies Championship.
Tee times: 7:54 a.m. off No. 9 tee on Thursday; 12:55 p.m. off No. 1 on Friday.
Dustin Johnson (1), Justin Thomas (2), Brooks Koepka (3): The FedExCup leader, reigning FedExCup champ and the only winner of two majors in 2018 are all grouped in this star-studded threesome. Thomas’ strong defense of the FedExCup includes three victories this season. No one has ever gone back-to-back in the FedExCup. Johnson has finished second and fourth in the past two FedExCups, but is looking to hoist the Cup for the first time. He also has three wins this season. Koepka is coming off victories at the U.S. Open and PGA Championship. These three also are the top three in the Official World Golf Ranking.
Tee times: 8:05 a.m. off No. 9 tee on Thursday; 1:06 p.m. off No. 1 tee on Friday.
Justin Rose (4), Bubba Watson (5), Jason Day (6): This group has combined for seven victories this season. They’ll be jostling for position in the all-important Top 5 in the FedExCup standings; the Top 5 entering the TOUR Championship can clinch the FedExCup with a win at East Lake, regardless of how their closest competitors perform. Watson responded to the worst finish of his FedExCup career with his first three-win season. Rose and Day have two wins apiece. All three are looking to add the FedExCup to resumes that include major championships.
Tee times: 1:06 p.m. off No. 1 tee on Thursday; 8:05 a.m. off No. 9 tee on Friday.
Here are the options fans can vote on for Friday’s second Featured Group.
7:54 a.m. off 9th: Patrick Reed (10), Phil Mickelson (11), Tony Finau (12)
8:16 a.m. off 9th: Jon Rahm (13), Patrick Cantlay (14), Patton Kizzire (15)
8:16 a.m. off 1st: Brandt Snedeker (30), Austin Cook (31), Brian Harman (32)
8:27 a.m. off 1st: Chesson Hadley (24), Pat Perez (25), Andrew Landry (26)