Aug 05

PGA Championship Week is Here.

PGA of America

When the calendar turns to August and the weather gets hot it can only mean the PGA Championship is right around the corner.  This also being a Ryder Cup year and adding in a condensed FedEx Cup final schedule should make the next six weeks a whirl wind of activity on the PGA Tour.  First we cannot start before giving props to Rory McIlroy for his latest period of awesome play.  Being crowned the Champion Golfer at the 2014  Open Championship at Hoylake then coming back on Sergio Garcia to win the WGC event at Firestone could be the moment we all think may be the launching pad for a career that will certainly entertain us for the next decade.

The PGA Championship which is conducted by the PGA of America leaves 20 spots open in the field for its members to qualify for.  These fine men and women work at your local club or practice facility everyday in their regular job making golf more enjoyable for you.  The PGA Professional National Championship in June gives the top 20 players a chance to tee it up with the big boys on Tour.  This past June two local New Jersey Golf Professionals qualified, Frank Esposito and Jim McGovern.  Good Luck to both men who will have all of our eyes glued to the televisions and internet to see what they shoot in their quest to make the cut and then some.  Joining Frank and Jim will be PGA Professional Bryan Jones.  Bryan is the Vice Chair of the PGA of America Rules Committee.  You may hear his name mentioned and see him on the first tee after the players are announced as the official with that specific group.  All the best for a quiet week for Bryan.

The PGA Championship also gives players the last chance to impress Capt. Tom Watson as he looks to pair down his list of Ryder Cup players.  So many interesting situations have arrived with Dustin Johnson taking a leave after playing very well this year and Tiger having withdrew with back issues last week at the WGC.  There are three captains picks that Watson will get to use and the hype will be ever present this weekend at Valhalla with who is on the bubble and who can play their way on the team.  The USA squad currently has quality players on the top of the list: Bubba Watson, Jim Furyk, Jimmy Walker, and Rickie Fowler.  The big questions will be can Tiger even play with his back in the shape its in and is he deserving of a captains pick.  Can Phil and Keegan Bradley play their way onto the team?  The USA points list has capable players like Ryan Moore, Harris English and Web Simpson waiting in the wings, all three are PGA Tour winners.  Tough decisions are going to be made in September when  Captain Watson announces his team.  I guess we will all wait and form our own opinion.  As for mine I like Rickie Fowler this week.  Top 5’s in all three Majors this year, heck with a few more putts falling he may be the next great young one we are all talking about.

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