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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Final Thoughts the Night Before the First Tee Goes in the Ground

Here are a few random thoughts the night before the first tee goes into the ground in the final round of Q School

  • The leaderboard at the end of the first day isn't really that important since rounds are played on split courses.  The leaderboard at the end of the second at fourth days should tell the story going into the last two rounds.  That gives everyone an equal number of rounds on both courses.
  • You can't advance after the first couple of rounds of Q School, but you can shoot yourself out of contention.
  • Slow and steady wins this race.  Last year no one had 6 rounds in the sixties.  Billy Mayfair (medalist) was closest with 5 rounds in the 60's and a final round 70, with a low round of only 67.  Keep an eye on they guys that shoot something like 68 / 69 in the first two rounds even more so than a guy who shoots a 64 / 72.  The ability to put up something under par on whichever course plays harder for any given player is important.
First impressions of pairings:
  • I thought it was interesting that Vaughn Taylor was the first name on the leaderboard.  Is that some kind of prediction?
  • I also thought it was funny that Roberto Castro, Martin Flores, and Billy Hurley III are the last group to go off since they are ironically the 23rd thru 25th finishers on the Nationwide Tour money list (last to advance).  Or is that the PGA Tour's way of subtly telling players to be happy with their already earned status and stay out of the way of others who aren't as fortunate?  Due to the importance of early season starts, I can't say I blame the players.
  • Hudson Swofford and Harris English are paired together.....UGA teammates and former college roommates....makes me wonder if the U.S. Open is in charge of the pairings.  If so, hopefully they aren't in charge of course set up.  The pressure's hard enough without that.
  • The third member of the Swofford / English paring is Travis Wadkins......Lanny's son.  The tournament missed the chance to pair Wadkins with Sam Saunders in the legacy pairing.
  • Gator Todd and David Duval paired together.  Highest ranked name with former highest ranked player.
That's enough for tonight.  Butterflies won't be off the charts tomorrow, but should at least be interesting to see what happens early.

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