John Deere Classic
We discuss a weird week in West Virginia, Stricker's stranglehold on Illinois, Cornhole, and of course, this week's PGA Tour stop
John Deere Classic
Where: Silvis, Ill.
Course: TPC Deere Run
Defending champion: Steve Stricker birdied the 72nd hole to beat Kyle Stanley by one and win this event for a third-straight year.
This Week's Fix Six
2. Zach Johnson
3. Charles Howell III
4. Kyle Stanley
5. Blake Adams
6. Carl Pettersson
Welcome to another edition of Fantasy Fix, where we're still trying to put the pieces together from last week. Two guys (Ted Potter Jr. and Troy Kelly) as famous as West Virginia's skyscrapers battling it out there in a playoff? Two guys (Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson) with a combined 18 major titles missing the cut in the same event as pros for the first time ever? The reigning U.S. Open champ, Webb Simpson, collapsing less than a month after holding up under major-championship pressure? I guess weird things really do happen when July 4th falls on a Wednesday. Either that, or we'll just chalk it up to golf being, well, golf. In any matter, we're back for more educated guesses this week. Let's get to it.
The PGA Tour heads to Illinois for the John Deere Classic, AKA the Steve Stricker Invitational. Apparently, "nothing runs like a Deere" except Steve Stricker at the John Deere.
Random tournament fact: Current Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee finished runner-up here in 1997. He might have won, but he was too busy critiquing Tiger Woods' swing.
Steve Stricker. I don't get it. Do these other guys think they aren't allowed to beat the University of Illinois product in this tournament? Golfers -- at least those not named Tiger Woods -- don't three-peat at PGA Tour events, especially in recent history. But that's what the Strick Show did last year, when he made an incredible birdie on the final hole after hitting a gutsy shot over water from a tough lie in a fairway bunker. I guess he just wanted to make things more interesting.
STUD OF THE WEEK
Steve Stricker. Um, see above. . . . He's 68-under par the past three years. 68 under!!! Do we need to say anymore? Time to wrap this column up. See you next week! Fine, fine, we aim to please so here are some more thoughts:
OTHER STUDS (NOT NAMED STEVE STRICKER)
Zach Johnson. ZJ has finished in the top three at TPC Deere Run in two of the past three years. Like Stricker he's a fellow Midwesterner, meaning he won't be treated too poorly by the fans, even if he tries to crash the party.
Charles Howell III. CH3 has been in the top 25 in five of his six times playing this event. Unfortunately, Howell has no ties to the Midwest and his middle name is Gordon. That's bad news because those diehard Stricker fans have been known to get pretty nasty. . .
BOUNCE BACK CANDIDATE
Charley Hoffman. The man with the shaggy hair has a T-15 and T-7 the past two years here. Sure, he's coming off kicking away a win at the Travelers, but Hoffman is a California dude. He should be ready to hop back on his board and ride the next wave.
WEEKLY YAHOO! ROSTER SELECTIONS
Starters: Steve Stricker, Ken Duke, Brian Davis, and John Senden
Bench: Zach Johnson, Charley Hoffman, Blake Adams and Carl Pettersson
Care to make a guest pick? Be bold and email me at Alex.Myers@GolfDigest.com or tweet at me (@AlexMyers3) for a chance to appear in next week's column. Or if you just feel like making fun of my picks or discussing your favorite Steve Stricker moment in John Deere history.