PGA Tour Expert Picks: Farmers Insurance Open
Tiger Woods is the favorite but Phil Mickelson, Rickie Fowler and Co. are ready to go.
Here's a little Q&A on what to expect from this week's Farmers Insurance Open.
What is it?
The Farmers Insurance Open is, as one person put it, "opening day" for golf fans as Tiger Woods will be teeing it up for the first time in the 2013-14 season.
Are you extra excited because Tiger is playing?
Yes. For some reason Charley Hoffman and Will Wilcox playing together on a Thursday afternoon don't get me as fired up as Tiger does.
Where is it?
Torrey Pines at La Jolla, Cali.
Isn't that the place Tiger has hoisted a lot of trophies?
Yes, eight times if you include the 2008 US Open.
When is it?
January 23-26, 2014
What is the purse?
How can I watch it?
Thursday thru Sunday -- Featured holes
Thursday and Friday, Jan. 23-24 -- 12:30-6:30 PM
Saturday, Jan. 25 -- 10:30 AM - 6 PM
Sunday, Jan. 26 -- 11 AM - 6:30 PM
Thursday and Friday, Jan. 23-24 -- 3-7 PM on Golf Channel
Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 25-26 -- 1-2:30 PM on Golf Channel and 3-6 PM on CBS
All times Eastern
Who isn't playing? Tiger, Phil Mickelson, Brandt Snedeker, Keegan Bradley, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler, Billy Horschel, Keegan Bradley, Bubba Watson, and Jason Day.
Who are the former champions?
2013 -- Tiger Woods
2012 -- Brandt Snedeker
2011 -- Bubba Watson
2010 -- Ben Crane
2009 -- Nick Watney
I thought you said Tiger had won this tournament a lot?
In addition to winning it last year, Woods won this tournament in 1999, 2003, and 2005-2008.
So who are you picking?
I'm glad you asked. Here are my picks for the Humana Challenge (I'm 0-2 so far this year on winners, 2-0 on top 10s, and 0-2 on sleepers):
Phil Mickelson (10-1) -- Woods' odds at 9-4 are just horrendous so I'm going with Lefty here. He loves playing back-to-back weeks and he just missed a win in 2011 when Watson got his. That was the tournament where Mickelson had Bones yank the flagstick from 95 yards away as he was going for the tie.
I'm also hoping for a Woods-Mickelson showdown late on Sunday afternoon.
Lock for top 10
Tiger Woods (9-4) -- The safest bet in sports? Since 2005 Woods has finished 1-1-1-1-T44-1 at this event and skipped it three times.
As Ryan Lavner pointed out, Woods is rock solid at this course:
More impressive than Tiger's 7 career wins in this event at Torrey Pines? He has only 3 rounds over par. Ever.— Ryan Lavner (@RyanLavnerGC) January 22, 2014
I would expect nothing different this year.
Grahan DeLaet (50-1) -- I agree that 50-1 isn't much of a traditional sleeper but this is a deep field and DeLaet isn't exactly one of the favorites.
It'll be his fourth tournament of the 2013-2014 season and he's finished top 10 in the last two. Pair that with a T9 here last year and I'm in on DeLaet getting his first PGA Tour win.
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