The number one player in the world and the number one player in FedEx Cup points, Rory McIlroy, leads 125 of the best golfers in the world into Paramus, New Jersey for The Barclays. Winner of his last three starts beginning at the Open Championship, the 25 year-old Norther Irishman will be looking to add a fourth consecutive win at Ridgewood Country Club, something that hasn’t been done since Tiger Woods accomplished the feat over the 2007, and 2008 seasons.
The Barclays is the first of four tournaments set to find a FedEx Cup Champion to crown for the 2014 season. Adam Scott is you’re defending champion, and Henrik Stenson is the defending 2013 FedEx Champion. Action gets underway on Thursday morning with only the top 100 in points moving on to TPC Boston next week.
Last year’s champ, Henrik Stenson won the FedEx Cup title and became the first player in history to go on to win the European Tour’s version, The Race To Dubai. Rory McIlroy came close in 2012, and fell short at the Tour Championship, but went on to win the Race To Dubai.
Adam Scott shot a final round five under par 66 on Sunday last year at Ridgewood from a six-shot deficit, packed his clubs and was ready to leave the property before the leaders began to stumble down the stretch. Scott watched as Tiger Woods, Justin Rose, and Gary Woodland missed big putts as they came in.
“I feel like I’ve been given a bit of a gift,” Scott said, “but I’ll take it.”
Hunter Mahan will be the only player in the field who has teed it up in every FedEx Cup playoff event since it’s inception in 2007. Phil Mickelson, Steve Stricker, and Mahan are the only players to qualify for all FedEx Cup playoff series’.
The Ridgewood Country Club is 7319 yards and plays to a par of 71 for the professionals. It dates back to the 1890’s and is one of the oldest country clubs in the United States.
Legendary course designer, A.W. Tillinghast was commissioned to build 27 holes at the Paramus New Jersey site. The 27 holes run in three separate loops away from the clubhouse, and the Barclays is played on a composition of the 18 toughest holes on all of the three courses.
With 2014 Ryder Cup Captain, Tom Watson continuing to look for talent to add to his team, the Barclays becomes the first opportunity for him to look at the remaining prospects that were not in the field last week in Greensboro. Watson will make his three Captains Picks early in September.
Rory McIlroy is on a huge winning streak, and coming into the playoffs firing on all cylinders. It will be interesting to see if he can continue his dominance on the golf course. He certainly has a great attitude, and sounds like a winner when he is in front of a microphone. If that confidence remains intact, we should just go ahead and give him the trophy and all of the money now.
But the reason we all love this game, is he still needs to get it done on the golf course!
• TELEVISION: Thursday-Friday, 2-6 p.m. ET (Golf Channel). Saturday, 1-2:30 p.m. (GC), 3-6 p.m. (CBS). Sunday, noon-1:30 p.m. (GC), 2-6 p.m. (CBS).
• RADIO: Thursday-Sunday, noon-6 p.m. (PGA TOUR Radio on SiriusXM and PGATOUR.COM).