2012 The Memorial Tournament Presented by Nationwide
Muirfield Village Golf Club – Dublin, Ohio
Par 72 – 7,265 yards
Thursday, May 31 – Sunday, June 3, 2012, TV: Golf Channel, CBS
Defending Champion: Steve Stricker
All odds courtesy of Bookmaker
The PGA returns to Muirfield for Jack Nicklaus’s Memorial Tournament. He designed the course and it rewards driving accuracy. Last year, six of the top 10 golfers on the leaderboard were also in the top 10 in driving accuracy. The course seems long at 7,295 yards, but the Par 5’s are reachable. That shortens the course somewhat.
Here is a look at some of the contenders and their odds to win and some head to head match-ups courtesy of bookmaker.
Luke Donald (9/1)
Donald regained the #1 ranking in the World Golf rankings last week with his 4 stroke victory at the BMW PGA Championship. It was his sixth victory in 15 months worldwide. Donald has never won the Memorial, but does have top 15’s in his last 3 trips to Muirfield, including a tie for 7th last year. Donald is certainly worth a play. He is -150 to beat both Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose. I like Donald against McIlroy.
Rory McIlroy (9/1)
McIlroy has missed two straight cuts at the Player’s and last week at the BMW PGA Championship. He has done well at the Memorial in two starts here with a top 10 in 2010 and a top 5 last year. I look for McIlroy to rebound, but I don’t know if he will win. You can take a chance on him to beat Tiger Woods at -150.
Tiger Woods (9/1)
Tiger won the Arnold Palmer in March, but has struggled in three tournaments since including ties for 40th at the Masters and Players, and a missed cut at the Wells Fargo. He has won the Memorial 4 times though, including 2009. He does well at this course, and hasn’t finished lower than 22nd here since 2002. Like McIlroy he should do better here, than he has recently. I like Tiger to beat Phil Mickelson at +105 and Webb Simpson at -135.
Phil Mickelson (14/1)
Mickelson tied for 7th two weeks ago at the Byron Nelson. He has never won the Memorial but does have 6 top 20’s in his last 7 starts at Muirfield. He is third on tour in birdies or better on par 5’s. Mickelson is -135 against both Woods and Steve Stricker. I like him against Stricker.
Justin Rose (16/1)
Rose finished second last week at the BMW behind Donald. It was his 6th top ten of the year. He won here in 2010, and also has 2 other top 5’s. Rose also has a win on the PGA Tour this season. Rose could be a nice semi-dark horse. You can also bet Rose to beat Donald at +120.
Rickie Fowler (16/1)
Fowler has 4 straight top 10’s including his first career win at Quail Hollow. Fowler has played 16 straight rounds at par or better. Fowler was the runner up at the Memorial in 2010. He is my pick to get his second career win. Fowler is -120 against Adam Scott.
Adam Scott (21/1)
Scott has 5 top 20 finishes in 7 PGA starts this year. He has never done well at Muirfield with only one top 5 in 2007. He might get a top 20 but I don’t see him really being a factor this week.
Steve Stricker (22/1)
Stricker is the defending champion at the Memorial. However, he had never finished in the top 10 before at Muirfield. He has 9 straight sub-par rounds at the Memorial. In three of his last four title defenses Stricker has finished inside the top 10. He is +105 against Mickelson.
Bubba Watson (25/1)
Watson won the Masters this year, and finished tied for 18th in New Orleans in late April. He then took a month off to spend time with his wife and newborn son. He has 4 top tens this season, and hasn’t finished below 25th in 9 events. this year. Watson is -110 to beat Jim Furyk.
Jim Furyk (25/1)
Furyk won this event in 2002. Since then he has made the cut 7 of 8 times with 3 top tens, including a runner up in 2009. He shot four rounds in the 60’s last week in Colonial but still finished alone in fourth. He has top 15’s in 5 of his last 7 starts. I like him to beat Watson at -120.
Webb Simpson (25/1)
Simpson missed the cut at the Player’s and hasn’t played since then. He has four top tens in 12 starts this season. He is in the top 20 on tour in greens in regulation and strokes gained putting, and third in birdie average. Simpson is +105 against Tiger Woods.
Bo Van Pelt (28/1)
Van Pelt has two straight top 20 finishes this season on the PGA tour. He was third at the Memorial in 2010 and had a top 15 last year. I don’t see him contending this week.
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