News & ToursMay 5, 2009

The Stadium Course by the numbers

The layout at TPC Sawgrass is the type of course where you remember each hole. With that in mind, here's a key statistic for every hole -- courtesy of the PGA Tour's ShotLink -- to place in the back of your head while watching this week's Players.

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Hole 1: Since 1992, players have found the fairway on this 423-yard par 4 just 55 percent of the time, making it the toughest fairway on the course to hit since the tour began gathering such data.

Hole 2: This 532-yard par 5 tempts players to go for the green in two blows and since 2003 none have done it as well as Adam Scott, who has reached the green six times in 16 tries.

Hole 3: The green on this 177-yard par 4 gave players fits last year, producing 22 three-putts—the same amount as 2007 and 2006 combined.

Hole 4: A seemingly benign par 4 at 384 yards, don't tell that to Phil Hancock. He holds the mark for the highest score on this hole with a 12 during 1985's first round.

Holes 5 and 6: Hoping to see an eagle on one of these par 4s (471 and 393 yards, respectively)? Wait for Steve Stricker, the only player to eagle each in tournament history.

Hole 7: The bunker on the left forces bail outs to the right on this 442-yard par 4. But it may not be a smart play. Since 2003 only 29 percent have hit the green from the right rough.

Hole 8: A par 3 of 219 yards, this hole is anything but a pushover as tee shots stopped an average of 47 feet from the hole last year.

Hole 9: Last year saw no power outage from the tee box as players averaged 288.9 yards off the tee on this 583-yard par 5—14.1 yards more than the previous year.

Hole 10: The left fairway bunker is not where you want to be on this 424-yard par 4. Since 2003 132 shots have found that bunker but only 48 (36 percent) hit the green on their next shot.

Hole 11: If you have a choice, go for it in two on this 535-yard par 5. Last year players going for it averaged 4.65. Those laying up: 5.01.

Hole 12: This short par 4 (just 358 yards) has produced 19 eagles in tournament play, but none during the past three Players.

Hole 13: Hitting the green on this 181-yard par 3 is only half the battle—since 1992 there have been 574 three-jacks on this green, more than any other hole on the course.

Hole 14: A beefy par 4 at 467 yards, the length took its toll on the Players field last year as only 33 percent hit the green in regulation, the lowest figure on the 14th since the tour began keeping track in 1992.

Hole 15: Any player sending their tee shot right on this 449-yard par 4 should wish for the bunker instead of the rough. Since 2003 players are half a stroke over par from the right rough but only a quarter stroke over par from the fairway bunker.

Hole 16: Looked at as a possible eagle chance, this shortish (507 yards) par 5 coughed up just five 3s last year—tying lowest figure in tournament history. Only five eagles were carded in 1985 as well.

Hole 17: With a scoring average of 3.30, No. 17—at 137 yards—was the only par 3 on tour between 125 and 150 yards to play over par last year.

Hole 18: For all the talk about how tough the 17th is, the 447-yard 18 is the bigger beast, having ranked as the toughest hole on the course five of the last six years, including the last four.

And for those who feel we may have robbed you of an item with the combo on holes 5 and 6, here's the reason Tiger Woods should just hit 3-wood off the tee all week long at the Players: Three of the last four winners of the Players have ranked first in driving accuracy for the week while none have ranked higher than 32nd in distance.

-- E. Michael Johnson

(Photo credit: Richard Heathcote, Getty Images)

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