The First Look: The RSM Classic
November 15, 2019
By Adam Stanley, PGATOUR.COM
Charles Howell III wins in playoff at The RSM Classic
The fall portion of the 2019-20 PGA TOUR season wraps up next week at The RSM Classic.
Tournament host Davis Love III will be in the field as he also unveils the newly-designed Plantation course at Sea Island Golf Club, a project he worked on his with his brother throughout 2019.
Charles Howell III defends his title after topping Patrick Rodgers in a playoff last year. It was Howell’s third PGA TOUR win, and his first since 2007.
FIELD NOTES: Presidents Cup participants Matt Kuchar, Webb Simpson and Adam Hadwin will be in the field along with International assistant KJ Choi in the last official PGA TOUR event before this year’s competition… Lanto Griffin, who currently tops the FedExCup standings, will be looking to continue his fantastic fall… Per usual, The RSM Classic field will be chock-full of local residents including Patton Kizzire, Zach Johnson, Harris English, Hudson Swafford, Jonathan Byrd and J.T. Poston, among others… Past champions Mackenzie Hughes, Robert Streb, Austin Cook, Ben Crane, and Kevin Kisner will be looking to rekindle some old magic… Sebastian Munoz and Brendon Todd join Griffin as fall winners in the field in Georgia.
FEDEXCUP: Winner receives 500 points.
STORYLINES: Four of the nine RSM Classic winners made the event their first PGA TOUR win (Austin Cook, Mackenzie Hughes, Robert Streb, Tommy Gainey)… This is the last event for TOUR pros to earn FedExCup points prior to 2020, along with the final opportunity to earn a spot in January's Sentry Tournament of Champions… Adam Hadwin and Matt Kuchar are using The RSM Classic as their final warm-up prior to playing in the Presidents Cup… Despite Sea Island having a plethora of PGA TOUR pros living there, no resident of Sea Island has actually won The RSM Classic. Chris Kirk lived there for nearly seven years, but moved to Atlanta prior to his win in 2013. Kevin Kisner won in 2015, but was only living in Sea Island temporarily during a re-model of his South Carolina home.
COURSE: Sea Island GC (Seaside), 7,005 yards, par 70. What got its start as a nine-hole layout built in 1929 was redone by Tom Fazio in 1999. He was tasked with bringing two existing nine-hole tracks together. Davis Love III and his brother Mark redesigned the Plantation Course at Sea Island in 2019. Entrants in The RSM Classic will play one of their first two rounds on the Plantation.
72-HOLE RECORD: 260, Kevin Kisner (2015).
18-HOLE RECORD: 60, Tommy Gainey (4th round, 2012).
LAST TIME: Although Charles Howell III led all week long a year ago, he still needed a strong finish to notch his first TOUR title in more than a decade. Howell birdied three of his final four holes to tie Patrick Rodgers and then birdied the second playoff hole for the victory. Howell shot 31 on his final nine holes to finish at 19-under (64-64-68-67) for the week. Four players (Howell, Rodgers, Webb Simpson, and Cameron Champ) shared the lead through the back nine. Simpson finished alone in third, while Ryan Blaum and Luke List finished T4. Champ, meanwhile, bogeyed the 17th to finish alone in sixth.
HOW TO FOLLOW
Television: Thursday-Friday, 12 p.m.-4 p.m. ET (Golf Channel). Saturday-Sunday, 1 p.m.-4 p.m. ET (Golf Channel).
PGA TOUR LIVE: Thursday-Friday, 9:15 a.m.- 4 p.m. ET (featured groups)
Radio: Thursday-Friday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. ET. Saturday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. ET (PGA TOUR Radio on SiriusXM and PGATOUR.com/liveaudio). (PGA TOUR Radio on SiriusXM and PGATOUR.com/liveaudio).