Mike Kern picks the second part of the FedExCup playoffs, the BMW Championship, and has 4 players to play
OK, so none of our guys did much of anything last week. Or at least not enough. But we went with mostly longer shots, and I told you right up front that I wasn’t thrilled about my chances. Still, we’ve had a good last two months, so let’s try to get back in the saddle. Or whatever.
This week it’s the BMW Championship, at Olympia Fields in Chicago, site of the 2003 U.S. Open. Without further ado, let’s get started. This is the second part of the three-legged FedExCup playoffs, with many guys still trying to earn a spot into the Tour Championship. There are 70 players this week, with the top 30 moving on.
The favorite is Dustin Johnson, who just won by like 100. He can do that, make it seem almost unfair. But this is a different week. So we’ll see. He’s listed at 7.5-1. Jon Rahm is next, 9-1, followed by Justin Thomas at 11-1. DJ won this thing in 2010 and 2016 but hasn’t cracked the top 20 since. Rahm is the points leader in the standings, and JT won this last year when it was played in the same city but at Medina.
Bryson Dechambeau is 12-1. He won the U.S. Amatuer here in 2015. Xander Schauffele is 14-1, Daniel Berger 16-1. He’s coming off a solo third. Rory McIlroy is also 16-1, along with recent PGA Champion winner Collin Morikawa. Rory hasn’t had a top 10 in his seven appearances since the restart. Morikawa is coming off a missed cut.
Patrick Cantlay, who’s my pick in my yearlong pool that I pick in December (can only use a guy once) and am somehow leading (I had Rahm last week when he got sixth), is 28-1. So is Scottie Scheffler. Cantlay was third last year. Jason Day, who had a missed cut after four straight top 10s before that, is 30-1. Also checking in at 30-1 are Tony Finau and Patrick Reed.
Harris English, Kevin Kisner and Tyrrell Hatton are 33-1. English was second last week and has nine top 25s in his last 10 starts. Kisner has three top 4s since July. He’s plus $750 to finish in the top five, which might not be a bad play. Oops, almost forgot — Tiger Woods is 33-1 as well. As I always say, you might want to put like five bucks on him just in case he’s Tiger Woods again. And yes, he can do that, even if it doesn’t look like he can right now.
Viktor Hovland and Hideki Matsuyama are 35-1. Hideki was second last year. Adam Scott and Matthew Wolff are 40-1. Paul Casey and Billy Horschel are 45-1. Matthew Fitzpatrick is 50-1. Cameron Champ and Russell Henley are 66-1. Henley has finished in the top 10 his last two times out. He’s plus $500 to do so again. Like Kisner, this could be worth a small play. Or maybe even a bigger one, if you’re feeling frisky. Hey, I can only give out as much info as possible.
Matt Kuchar, Sungjae Im, Gary Woodland and Alex Noren are 66-1 too.
I could give you more, but you can search the rest and try to come up with a legit longshot or two.
You know me and chalk. Of the top guys I was leaning toward Webb Simpson, who I saw listed at 20-1 coming off a sixth last week. But he was a late scratch, to get some rest before the Tour Champ. Oh well, we’ll never know.
With him out of the lineup, I’m going to go with Daniel Berger, at 16-1. And also back that up with a little something on a top 5 at 4-1. He’s 2-1 for a top 10, which doesn’t sound quite as enticing.
I’m also going to go with Jason Day, at 30-1. And at plus $550 for a top 5. He was playing so well before I mushed him last week. Don’t know if he has enough to get it done, but he certainly has enough to contend.
As I already noted, I would put something on Kisner at plus $750 for a top 5 and also a little something on him to win outright at 33-1. Same goes for that Russell Henley bloke, at 66-1 and plus $500 for a top 10.
Again, I’m not wowed by anything in particular. But that’s more than enough to hopefully keep us interested all the way to the end. Then it’s on to the final 30. With a U.S. Open on the horizon.
Faves: Daniel Berger (16-1) — also a little something on a top 5 at 4-1
Next Up: Jason Day (30-1) — and plus $550 for a top 5
Also: Kevin Kisner (33-1) — and plus $750 for a top 5
Longshot: Russell Henley (66-1) — and plus $500 for a top 10
BMW CHAMPIONSHIP SPECS
Site: Olympia Fields, Illinois.
Course: Olympia Fields CC (North). Yardage: 7,366. Par: 70.
Purse: $9.5 million. Winner's share: $1.71 million.
Where and when to watch: Thursday-Friday, 3-7 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday, noon to 3 p.m. (Golf Channel), 3-6 p.m. (NBC); Sunday, 1-3 p.m (Golf Channel), 3-7 p.m. (NBC).