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Monday, April 15, 2013

RBC Heritage - Power Rankings

With the Masters fully behind us, we now turn our attention completely to Hilton Head, SC and the RBC Heritage. When digging into the history of many players, the facts are that Harbour Town either fits your eye or it doesn't.

Guys we typically consider "grinders" like Jim Furyk and Matt Kuchar have their share of success. Solid iron players like Jason Dufner and Luke Donald have also done well.

So how does it all shake out?

Here we go:

  1. Jason Dufner - We are entering into the heart of Dufner's season, and this serves as an excellent warm up for his New Orleans defense. His irons looked really good at the Masters, which will be important this week. This is his fifth trip, with his only missed cut the first one. He also has three top-26 finishes. The relaxed atmosphere should be just fine with Duf.
  2. Boo Weekley - I challenge you to find a better record than Weekley has at Harbour Town. He won in his first two trips, still serving as his only two TOUR wins. He's never missed a cut, and three of his other four weeks were T13 or better including a T6 last year.
  3. Jim Furyk - He's a safe pick in virtually any format this week. Tied for 8th last year with a win and two seconds on his resume at Harbour Town.
  4. Luke Donald - A surprising T37 last year after finishing no worse than third in his three preceding starts. He needs to get his 2013 jump started, and this could be the perfect place.
  5. Jason Day - Now it's time to play amateur psychiatrist. Finished third at the Masters and improved from MC to T22 to T9 in his three starts at Harbour Town, skipping it last year. His game is primed for a big week if his head and heart are in it.
  6. Billy Horschel - No history here, but we've seen what he did in Houston and San Antonio. He can't get away with nervy driving around Harbour Town or he'll never leave the trees.
  7. Brandt Snedeker - He won here in 2011, but the year to look at is 2008. That was the last time he came here the week after a Masters final-round let down, finishing T53. Hard to tell if his excellent form will trump his broken heart.
  8. Matt Kuchar - Made 8/9 cuts with two top 10s and four top 25s. Had a disappointing T44 last year.
  9. Charles Howell III - Good record here with three top 25s in seven trips. Counting on his irons and current form to make this one of his better trips to Harbour Town.
  10. Ernie Els - It's a bit of a throwback pick, but we all saw what Angel Cabrera did at Augusta National last week. Has three missed cuts and a T48 in his last four starts, but a runner-up before that in 2007. In all, he's made 10/13 cuts with seven top 10s including that runner-up and two thirds.
  11. Charley Hoffman - Solid wind player if things get gusty, coming off a T3 at the Valero Texas Open and a T8 here last year.
  12. Zach Johnson - Last year's runner-up has yet to crack a top 10 this year after six in 2012. He's the right fit for this course. Accurate off the tee, a good wedge player and a solid putter.
Next 5: Stewart Cink, Harris English, Brian Gay, Carl Pettersson and Webb Simpson

We'll take a look at some games tomorrow. 

Best of luck!

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