Wednesday, June 11, 2008

2008 U.S. Open Picks

The US Open golf championship begins today at Torrey Pines, only the second public facility to host the championship. Also unusual is the U.S. Open being staged at a course that has a regular PGA Tour stop, although the Open version of Torrey Pines will be significantly harder than the soft course the pros see each January.

Here is my analysis of some of the top players in the world:

Vijay Singh: #9 player in the world should have already have this title on his resume. Fast, undulating greens can be a problem for Cheater Veej, so he finishes top 30.

Ernie Els: #4 and twice a past champion, but he is not the same player he used to be. I can't see him contending, so let's call it a top 25.

Sergio Garcia: #7 player in the world and current Players champ is a great ball striker. His putting has been better lately, but I think he will struggle some on these poa greens. Top 15.

K.J. Choi: #11 player in the world is solid and seems to play best on tough courses. He definitely could win this weekend, but I will pick him as a top 15.

Jim Furyk: #10 player in the world has a game made for Opens, although his game has been off just a tad. He is an accurate driver, one of the best putters in the world, and mentally tough. I think Torrey Pines is a little too long for him to win, but he will gut out a top 10.

Geoff Ogilvey: #5 player in the world is playing well and won the U.S. Open two years ago. I don't think this is his week, but I think he gets a top 10.

Stewart Cink: #13 player in the world has had a solid year and contended at this course in January. His combination of reasonable length, super accuracy, and great putting makes him a contender at the U.S. Open every year. He gets a top 10.

Tiger Woods: #1 player in the world with 16 career majors has taken two months off to rehab his knee after minor surgery. He has had tremendous success at Torrey Pines as a junior and a pro, but his knee is unproven for now. I think he will be just a little too rusty to win on the hardest course of the year, but he will still be in there with a top 5 finish.

Phil Mickelson: #2 player also has had great success on this course and is from nearby San Diego. He has won twice this year and will be paired with Tiger the first two (at least) rounds. This is not my most confident pick, but I think Phil gets his first U.S. Open in front of homeboys this weekend.

My pick for the winning number is 280 (-4).

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