The tee times have been announced for this week’s PGA Championship at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wisconsin. Some of the more interesting opening round trios are listed and analyzed below.
7:45 a.m. – David Toms, Mark Brooks, Vijay Singh: All three are former PGA Championship winners; the 54-year-old Brooks in 1996; the 48-year-old Toms in 2001; and the 51-year-old Singh in both 1998 and 2004. Singh won his second title at Whistling Straits. Only Toms has a win on Tour in the past five years, but all three will still be fun to watch together.
12:40 p.m. – Shane Lowry, Bernd Wiesberger, Webb Simpson: Lowry comes from from Akron hoisting his WGC-Bridgestone trophy. He’s never finished higher than 46th here. Wiesberger won the Alstom Open last month and finished tied for 15th at the PGA last summer. Simpson is looking for his first win on tour since the Shriners in October of 2013.
1:20 p.m. – Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy, Zach Johnson: Honestly, where to begin? Expect productivity at offices in the US and Nothern Ireland to plummet around this time as No. 1 returns to the course for the first time in seven weeks to face No. 2 breathing down his neck, and throw in The Open Championship winner. Nine Majors won among these three, all within the last five years.
1:30 p.m. – Jason Dufner, Phil Mickelson, Padraig Harrington: Not as current as Jordan, Rory, and Zach, but these three all have won here in the past decade – Dufner in 2013, Harrington in 2008, and Mickelson in 2005. Mickleson is now 26 months removed from his last title, the 2013 Open Championship, and has slipped out of the Top 20.
7:45 a.m. – Bubba Watson, Jim Furyk, Paul Casey: Both Watson and Furyk are probably still trying to figure out how neither one of them won last week’s WGC-Bridgestone, but that’s water under the bridge. Furyk lost by two strokes to Dufner in 2013, Watson fell in a playoff to Martin Kaymer in 2010.
8:05 a.m. – Rickie Fowler, Jason Day, Dustin Johnson: Day is starting to get buzz as the best player without a Major, and won the Canadian Open two weeks ago. He’s finished in the Top 10 of six of his last 11 Majors. Fowler has two wins in the last two months – The Players and the Scottish Open, but hasn’t been in contention at a Major this year after his rare feat of finishing in the Top 5 at all four last year. Johnson was nowhere in sight at the Open Championship after finishing sixth at the Masters and second at the US Open.
8:15 a.m. – Tiger Woods, Martin Kaymer, Keegan Bradley. Again, it’s three former champions, but Bradley and Kaymer seem light years ahead of Woods for adding another piece of hardware anytime soon. Bradley famously won his Major debut in 2011, while Kaymer won the first of his two career Majors in a playoff in 2010. Woods had a nice overall effort at his own Quicken Loans National two weeks ago, and is the only man to win the PGA Championship open in back-to-back years (1999-2000 and 2006-2007) since it went to a stroke-play format. But those accomplishments were years ago; the modern Tiger has missed two cuts, and finished 28th, 11th, and 40th in his last five PGA Championships.