Power Rankings: Wyndham Championship
August 09, 2021
By Rob Bolton , PGATOUR.COM
- Webb Simpson has won before at Sedgefield Country Club. (Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Editor's note: Patrick Reed withdrew on Tuesday.
The Wyndham Championship isn’t part of the FedExCup Playoffs, but playoffs are as much about who survives and advances as who doesn’t. So, for many at Sedgefield Country Club this week, their personal playoffs begin now.
A field of 156 is assembled in Greensboro, North Carolina, for the conclusion of the PGA TOUR’s regular season. Scroll past the projected contenders for a review of what’s at stake, how Sedgefield is expected to test and more.
POWER RANKINGS: WYNDHAM CHAMPIONSHIP
Rickie Fowler, Tommy Fleetwood, Lucas Glover, Francesco Molinari, Barracuda Championship winner Erik van Rooyen and defending champion Jim Herman will be among the notables reviewed in Tuesday’s Fantasy Insider.
The Wyndham Championship has served as the anchor of the PGA TOUR regular season throughout the FedExCup era and Sedgefield CC has hosted since 2008. Because statuses for golfers will be subject to change at its conclusion, the gathering in Greensboro presents a little like the last day of high school. Some guys never will see each other again, for even a reunion must be earned.
For most, it’ll preface a rebirth that results in a run at the FedExCup during the three-event Playoffs on deck, the Korn Ferry Tour Finals that’s contested concurrently, or perhaps a spot in the second stage of qualifying school to regain status on the KFT in 2022. Churn is the norm in the constant of the meritocracy.
Leading the qualifiers for the Playoffs is the Comcast Business TOUR TOP 10. Of the 25 mathematically within reach to be rewarded, four are in the field at Sedgefield – Louis Oosthuizen (eighth in FedExCup points), Jason Kokrak (12th), Hideki Matsuyama (14th) and Patrick Reed (22nd). Of them, only Oosthuizen can stretch to No. 1. He cannot finish lower than 10th.
Another impactful bubble hovers over Bo Hoag at 125th in points. From Sepp Straka at 105th through Rafael Campos at 151st, only Charles Howell III (137th) isn’t committed at Sedgefield. (CH3 is fully exempt through the 2021-22 season, so he forfeits only the chance to qualify for the 2021 Playoffs).
Sedgefield is a stock par 70 measuring 7,131 yards. With no significant changes and with customarily favorable scoring conditions, it’ll play as the racetrack with which the entrants are familiar. Last year’s scoring average of 68.779 aligned with its recent history.
Bermuda greens are ready to touch 12 feet on the Stimpmeter, but the daily threat for rain and increased chance of storms deeper into the tournament could impact that. The two-and-a-half-inch primary rough will be consistent. Wind will not be a factor, so every bit of the daytime highs in the low 90s will be felt before a relative cooling on Sunday.
En route to the title last year, Jim Herman showcased the textbook formula for success in a shootout. He led the field in greens hit (63 of 72) and finished third in Strokes Gained: Putting, connecting on 14 tries outside 10 feet, tied for most in the field. He went 10-for-21 from 10-20 feet and ranked second in average distance of putts holed.
Because the Wyndham Championship is the final stop before the Playoffs, all top 10s at Sedgefield will be eligible for entry into the Fortinet Championship on Sept. 16-19.
ROB BOLTON’S SCHEDULE
PGATOUR.COM’s Fantasy Insider Rob Bolton recaps and previews every tournament from numerous angles. Look for his following contributions as scheduled.
MONDAY: Power Rankings
TUESDAY*: Sleepers; Fantasy Insider
* - Rob is a member of the panel for PGATOUR.COM’s Expert Picks for PGA TOUR Fantasy Golf, which also publishes on Tuesday.