Charles Schwab Challenge 2020, Predictions and Picks

This weekend in Texas, the PGA Tour is back for the first time in months and it is a FULLY LOADED field, in a tournament otherwise lacking stardom. Here are just some of the names being paired for this weekend:

-Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Brooks Koepka

-Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler

-Phil Mickelson, Gary Woodland, Kevin Na

-Bryson DeChambeau, Dustin Johnson, Justin Rose

This doesn’t even cover all the big-name golfers who will be making an appearance in the lone star state. Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, otherwise known as “Hogan’s Alley,” will be almost empty with little more than the golfers and the crew required to run the tournament.

This will be interesting to watch not only because of the names listed above but because there will be no fans. Similar to UFC or the WWE the feel will be different when Rory pipes a drive or Phil shows off his world-class short game, and there is no cheering, no slow increase in noise as people hold their breath waiting to see where the ball ends up.

A positive from the no-fan aspect is the players will most likely be more relaxed and with some even agreeing to be mic’d up. It may feel like we’re with our buddies playing 18 at our home course swearing and talking shit to one other. That is something fans have been wanting for a long time and will add a more humanizing feature to the Gods of golf.

Now if you’re a betting man like myself, you’re probably asking what are the odds looking like. Well to list the top 5: Rory McIlroy (+800), Jon Rahm (+1100), Justin Thomas (+1600), Webb Simpson (+2200) and Bryson DeChambeau/Brooks Koepka (+2500).

Rory had been playing exceptional golf, but if you want my two cents, I would watch Webb Simpson, Justin Rose (+5000) and the Lefty, Phil (+15000).

Simpson recently won at the Waste Management Phoenix Open and could be looking to get an early win after quarantine. Rose won Colonial two years ago, and was in a slump before the break, but hopefully used this time to come back and dominate.

Phil is my longshot. He didn’t play well in The Match with Brady, Manning and Tiger but I think that’s motivation for him. He always finds a way to be in the top players and I think this is where the old man can shine and really find a groove.

Regardless of who wins or whom you bet on, this tournament will be one for the books with word-class talent in the first golf tournament since March.

Expansion Series 3: Indianapolis

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, every die-hard sports fan has missed out on some key events that otherwise would have occurred.

The possibility of not having a football season (college or professional) has me pinching myself to make sure that I’m not living in a dream. In an uncertain time in the sports world, it’s perfectly normal to let the mind wander when thinking about hypotheticals that otherwise would never happen.

Sports is what brings us all together, and one thing that every sports fan has in common is that the player, team, or coach that they cheer for represents something unique to them. The majority of fans resonate with a team regionally, and mainly reside locally. That being said, I will dive into each region that is craving a major sports team.

Next up, Indy.

The Colts have had a rocky history in the past 20 years with the empire of Peyton Manning and Marvin Harrison being preceded by the ever so talented Andrew Luck, up until his surprising and early retirement. They had an ‘in the hunt’ season under the leadership of Jacoby Brissett, and the upcoming season will surely have some level of interest now that the veteran Philip Rivers will be joining the team.

The Pacers have seen their days in the limelight as well, as they have by and large found themselves in the playoffs over the last few years. Victor Oladipo gave the team some energy with his all-around skillset until his gruesome injury left the team in an emotional drought.

In recognition of the two sports that Indianapolis is lacking, the Indianapolis Indians are the current Triple-A affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates and were once home to the Indianapolis Racers, a professional hockey team. With little to go off of, I don’t see why Indy shouldn’t have a hockey team or a baseball team.

For more in this series, read why Las Vegas and Buffalo are also in need of expansion teams.

Expansion Series 4: Houston

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, every die-hard sports fan has missed out on some key events that otherwise would have occurred.

The possibility of not having a football season (college or professional) has me pinching myself to make sure that I’m not living in a dream. In an uncertain time in the sports world, it’s perfectly normal to let the mind wander when thinking about hypotheticals that otherwise would never happen.

Sports is what brings us all together, and one thing that every sports fan has in common is that the player, team, or coach that they cheer for represents something unique to them. The majority of fans resonate with a team regionally, and mainly reside locally. That being said, I will dive into each region that is craving a major sports team.

Houston is an interesting case because the sports franchises that reside there are so strong and have been very good in the last few years, legally or otherwise.

Even with the cheating scandal, the Astros were a very talented team and are absolutely still a very strong contender going forward.

The Texans, under the field leadership of Deshaun Watson, have a lot to strive for despite losing arguably one of the best wide receivers in the game in Deandre Hopkins. J.J. Watt is a personal hero of mine, but fans may be at their wits end with Bill O’Brien after Hopkins was sent to the Cardinals for not nearly enough in return (running back David Johnson).

Lastly, the Rockets have one of the best duos in the game in Russell Westbrook and James Harden; two MVP’s that still show MVP talent. They absolutely would have caused a problem for any other team standing in their way of an NBA championship, which would have been the first time in the finals for each of them.

Additionally, they even had an XFL team in the Houston Roughnecks during its brief existence before COVID-19 decided to cut the season short. The Roughnecks played at the University of Houston’s stadium and went undefeated through the only five games of the season.

What the city lacks is hockey, and much like Buffalo does not have desirable weather to house a baseball franchise, the same paradox applies to the warm weather of Texas for hockey fans. The closest thing they had to a hockey team was the Houston Aeros, which was an AHL affiliate of the Minnesota Wild until 2014.

For more in this series, read why Las Vegas, Buffalo and Indianapolis are also in need of expansion teams.