With the BMW Championship finishing up and the Tour Championship on the horizon next week, it’s not too early to look at the newly released odds for the U.S Open Championship. The field of 144 will tee it up at Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, New York, on September 17, with no qualifying and only USGA designated exempt players teeing it up.
Winged Foot is a traditional U.S. Open course and will be hosting the tournament for the sixth time. The last time the U.S. Open was contested at Winged Foot produced one of the most bizarre finishes in its storied history.
Phil Mickelson, seemingly in control on the 18th tee, pulled his drive left into the hospitality area and finished with a double bogey. Geoff Ogilvy ended up as the champion with a score of five over par, one shot ahead of Jim Furyk, Mickelson, and Colin Montgomerie.
It’s unusual for the players to see a U.S. Open-type set up in the weeks prior to the tournament. But this year, with the postponement of the event until September following the FedEx Cup playoffs, many are experiencing a past U.S. Open venue at Olympia Fields for the BMW Championship. As of this writing, no player was under par as the leaders played the back nine in the third round.
For those looking for an early indication of which players might be a good bet to win at Winged Foot, taking a close look at how they could navigate their way around Olympia Fields would be a good idea. The Tour Championship will take place next week at East Lake in Atlanta, a much different test, but will still provide an indication of the state of the games of the 30 players that qualify to get there.
Caesars Sportsbook has Dustin Johnson, Joh Rahm, Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas, Brooks Koepka, and Bryson DeChambeau as the favorites. The odds range from +1000 for Johnson (bet $10 to win $100) to +1600 for DeChambeau. All of them, with the exception of Brooks Koepka, who is nursing a sore knee after playing for seven consecutive weeks, is at Olympia Fields this week and playing reasonably well.
Johnson, McIlroy, and Koepka have all won a U.S. Open while Thomas is also a major champion with a PGA Championship on his resume. It’sIt’s fair to point out that given the course’s difficulty, it might not be a long hitter that emerges as the champion come September 20.
Looking a little farther down the odds list, we find Xander Schauflee, PGA Champion Colin Morikawa, Patrick Cantlay, Daniel Berger, Webb Simpson, Hideki Matsuyama, and Adam Scott. Not surprisingly, all but Simpson are at Olympia Fields, and the entire group will be at East Lake next week.
These players have odds that range from +1800 to +3300. For Matsuyama, Cantlay, and Scott, who are in contention at the BMW, their finish this week could definitely affect their odds in the coming days.
Wagering Dark Horses
As always, Tiger Woods, opening at +3500, always attracts a lot of attention. His age and relative lack of tournament play has affected his performance. However, he was in the field at the BMW, and while he didn’t look all that great through three rounds, he was able to work on his game on a very similar setup to Winged Foot.
Matt Kuchar, whose consistency off the tee and a seemingly endless number of top ten finishes should have produced a major championship by now, is a player to consider, especially at +10000. Ricky Fowler, +6000, is also still in search of his first major championship and has the game that would lend itself to success at Winged Foot.
He wasn’t in the field at the BMW but will have had plenty of time to prepare after failing to advance beyond the first tournament of the FedEx Cup playoffs.
Finally, a couple of young guns at +5000 who could follow in Colin Morikawa’s footsteps are Viktor Hovland and Matthew Wolff. The pair from Oklahoma State have both recorded wins on the PGA Tour and are poised to be among the group that carries the Tour forward for years to come.