The first of the “Big Four” tees off this week just outside the Big Apple. Bethpage Black rolls out the mat for the Barclays. For the next four weeks, (actually five since they take a break between the BMW and the Tour Championship); you will see only the best of the best.
For computing purposed you almost need a degree in calculus to figure out the standings and the math once they get three deep in.
The easiest way to break it down: (Rankings for players)
The Barclays: Top 125
The Deutche Bank: Top 100
The BMW: Top 70, (No Cut)
The Tour Championship: Top 30, (Reseeded)
Each win is worth 2,000 points, so it’s possible even the guy on the bottom end of the rankings can shoot to, or near the top if he gets hot even for just two of the four weeks. For example, two of the years, (Jim Furyk in 2010 and Bill Haas in 2011); were outside the top 10 to grab the prize.
Also, what makes it even more interesting, the player who does win the Tour Championship at the end, doesn’t necessarily win the FedEx Cup, (thus the reason for reseeding and points-I won’t even begin to try and break it down further until we get to the ATL).
Now if you’re looking for a back story you have one. It is extremely important for guys on the Ryder Cup bubble to play well. (Rickie Fowler and Matt Kuchar just to mention a couple, and while I’m at it, congrats to “Kooch” for showing, not to mention medaling at the Olympics).
As far as the kickoff at Bethpage Black, it is one tough track. Nothing but hills and drops and loooong with a lot of sand, you almost need a camel. Par 71 at 7,468 yards. Depending ont he weather, I wouldn’t expect the guys to go really low. Anywhere from -4 to -10 could win it.