PGA Picks: BMW Championship Odds and Expert Betting Predictions
As opposed to last weekend, we should have a fairer test of golf after last week’s ridiculous course set up where Dustin Johnson was -30 under par.
This week we have only 70 golfers that qualified for the BMW Championship, and they will play all four rounds, with the Top 30 moving ahead to next week to Atlanta for the Tour Championship.
The venue is Olympia Fields CC, which hasn't been featured on the PGA Tour schedule since 2003 when it hosted the U.S. Open. This course was used for the 2015 U.S. Amateur, which coincidentally was won by Bryson DeChambeau.
They will use the North Course, and this piece of property opened for golf 105 years ago in what is now called Olympia Fields, IL, which is about 25 miles from The Loop in downtown Chicago.
This venerable course is tree lined with a creek running through it, and that will force golfers to make win or lose decisions on many of the par 4’s, as the water ends up being in the landing area of tee shots for this 7,366-yard layout with a par 70. Seven par 4’s are 450 yards or longer.
Last week it was reported the rough was thick and lush at about four inches, and there is no intention of cutting it this week, giving this course a U.S. Open feel.
The greens are supposed to be set with a stimp of 12.5. However, compared to last week, the undulation will truly come into play. Pin placement will be critical all four days, and iron shots will be far better off to be below the hole than above it for putting and scoring purposes.
A Look at the Field
Here are golf odds for the Top 12 and ties to win this week:
Dustin Johnson +800 - Jon Rahm +1000 - Bryson DeChambeau +1200 - Justin Thomas +1200
Rory McIlroy +1600 - Xander Schauffele +1600 - Colin Morikawa +2000 - Daniel Berger +2000
Webb Simpson +2000 - Hideki Matsuyama +3300 - Jason Day +3300 - Patrick Cantlay +3300
Patrick Reed +3300 - Scottie Scheffler +3300 - Tiger Woods +3300
Tony Finau +3300 - Viktor Hovland +3300
Johnson will be a popular pick this week after last week’s blowout in Boston. There are two ways of thinking about Johnson going into this tourney. First, after he’s won a tournament and played again within three weeks, in 10 attempts he’s won thrice and had six other Top 10 finishes. However, what’s his motivation? He’s playing in Atlanta, and his Top 30 is secured as the No. 1 player at this point.
Rahm and DeChambeau both played in the U.S. Amateur here five years ago and at least have a working knowledge of the course. Rahm has played more consistently, which helps for making golf picks. DeChambeau is more hit and miss right now and tougher to gauge.
Justin Thomas has a reputation for playing his best on tougher golf courses, and his statistical profile shows him among the best in this field in shots gained from tee to green and approach. If that holds, Thomas could be putting for birdies more than most.
McIlroy admitted last week his head is not where it needs to be, and he’s trying to find his game, which is hardly comforting for making him a play.
Day, Cantlay and Finau all missed the cut last week, leaving questions. They all knew they were going to make this field. As human beings, we can see the logic of understanding a bigger prize exists ahead, yet as golf bettors, are any of us comfortable with the idea that they can just “turn the switch”, especially against this field?
Morikawa also missed the cut last week. And let’s be honest, it’s hard for an experienced player to refocus after winning a major, let alone someone who is 23. Maybe the PGA champion for Top 20 and that’s about it. Tiger is attracting attention in name only.
Golf Picks: Who to Consider This Week
We purposely did not mention Daniel Berger (+350 and +150) and Webb Simpson (+300 and +135), thinking both are contenders for Top 5’s and Top 10’s based on current form and having games that style-wise more fit at Olympia Fields.
Thomas offers decent value for a Top 5 (+200) and could be a good choice for tournament or daily head-to-head matchups.
Because of the shortened field and oddsmakers not wanting to hand out easy money for Top 20 finishes, 18 golfers are even money or less, making it more challenging to forecast picks in this category.
One player that is not a longshot, but running a bit under the radar, at least for this track, is Kevin Kisner who’s at +275 for Top 10 and +115 for Top 20.
Doug Upstone of Doc’s Sports has 21 documented No. 1 titles and finished in the Top Ten 80+ other times in a distinguished career. Doug as a professional handicapper/writer has written for various well-known sports betting websites and several of the football newsletters you have read before.
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