Charles Schwab Challenge bets: Who a gambler and experts are picking this week
At this week’s Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial Country Club, who does the journalist, betting analyst or data guru like? Or the caddie? Or the old-school gambler? Gimme the facts, storylines and trends. Gimme that inside-the-ropes look. Gimme your gut feeling.
You bet, bettor.
Welcome to GOLF.com’s new gambling advice column, where we’ve assembled a panel of those aforementioned experts to make three “best bets.” A real-life professional bettor here will then heed that advice, add his acumen and wager his own cash. It’s not unlike what you do through texts and Google searches — except now it’s all in one place.
Our hope is to help you with your own weekly picks, whether those are for a low-stakes office fantasy league, (legal!) big-bucks bets with a sportsbook or through free-to-play Chirp Golf, an app from our parent company that is available in the App Store and at Google Play.
Now, on to some facts, the expert picks, the bettor’s best bets and info on how to bet for free.
This week’s tournament: Charles Schwab Challenge, Colonial Country Club, Fort Worth, Texas
TV: Thursday, 4-7 p.m., Golf Channel; Friday, 4-7 p.m., Golf Channel; Saturday, 2-5:30 p.m., Golf Channel, 5:30-7 p.m., CBS; Sunday, noon-2 p.m., Golf Channel, 2-6:30 p.m., CBS.
Weather (weather.com): Thursday, mostly sunny, 89 degrees, 14 mph S wind; Friday, scattered thunderstorms, 82 degrees, 9 mph ESE wind; Saturday, scattered thunderstorms, 78 degrees, 8 mph NE wind; Sunday, a.m. clouds/p.m. sun, 79 degrees, 10 mph ESE wind
Defending champion: Daniel Berger
Top 10 in odds (via DraftKings): Jordan Spieth, +1,050; Justin Thomas, +1,300; Collin Morikawa, +1,500; Abraham Ancer, +1,700; Tony Finau, +1,700; Patrick Reed, +1,700; Daniel Berger, +1,900; Corey Conners, +1,900; Will Zalatoris, +2,500; Joaquin Niemann, +2,650.
Nick Piastowski, GOLF.com, @nickpia
Bet 1: Abraham Ancer, top 10, +188. Good last week, good all season. And good course fit. Sold.
Bet 2: Brian Harman, top 20, +138. See above, but just going with a top 20 here.
Bet 3: Corey Conners, to-win, +1,900. If not this week, this is going to happen soon.
Jessica Marksbury, GOLF.com, @Jess_Marksbury
Bet 1: Will Zalatoris, top 10, +250. These are juicy odds for one of the season’s most consistent performers — and he’s coming off a T8 finish at ultra-tough Kiawah.
Bet 2: Scottie Scheffler, top 20, +125. I have faith that Scottie — also coming off a T8 at Kiawah — will rise to the occasion at what is essentially a home game for him.
Bet 3: Abraham Ancer, top 10, +188. Ancer hasn’t finished outside the top 8 since April. Another top 10 this week in his home state feels like a lock.
Brady Kannon, host, Vegas Stats and Information Network (VSiN), @lasvegasgolfer
Bet 1: Abraham Ancer, top 10, +190. Abraham Ancer has finished in the top 10 in his past three starts, including at the PGA Championship after shooting a 65 on Sunday at Kiawah. I feel like that final round gives him some really good vibes, and he’s coming back to his home state on a course that really suits his game. Let’s make it four straight in the top 10 for Mr. Ancer.
Bet 2: Chris Kirk, top 20, +190. Courses I used as correlations this week were Sea Island, home of the RSM Classic, Harbour Town (RBC Heritage) and Waialae CC (Sony Open). Kirk has won at Colonial before and performed extremely well on the other related tracks. He might slip on the plaid coat again this week, let alone finish in the top 20.
Bet 3: Lucas Glover over Ryan Palmer, best finishing position, +135. Glover just posted a top 5 finish recently in Texas, at the Valero. He was 23rd at the RSM and 33rd at Harbour Town and 23rd at Colonial last year. Ryan Palmer is a member at this course and has had very boom or bust results. The price definitely favors Glover, in my opinion, for what ought to be a much closer match than the odds would indicate.
Wes Reynolds, host, Vegas Stats and Information Network (VSiN), @WesReynolds1
Bet 1: Collin Morikawa, to-win, +1,500. Morikawa has gained 44 strokes on approach over the past 24 rounds, which is 12 more than anyone else in the field. He’s also out for redemption after missing a 6-foot birdie on the 72nd hole to win in regulation and lipping out a 3-footer for par on the first playoff hole.
Bet 2: Gary Woodland, top 10, +400: Woodland was ninth in his debut here last year and was on the first page of the leaderboard last Sunday at the PGA before a double at 7 sent his round sideways.
Bet 3: Peter Uihlein, top 20, +400: Uihlein has two straight top 15s at Colonial and comes in playing solid golf, having won six weeks ago on the Korn Ferry Tour in Las Vegas. He also has a runner-up and a 7th on the KFT in the past couple months.
Martin de Knijff, Metric Gaming, @mdkentrepreneur
Bet 1: Justin Rose, to win, +2,800. As I’ve mentioned before, the game is coming into shape, and Rose is very close now. Magnificent Sunday round at the PGA Championship. Will win soon again.
Bet 2: Collin Morikawa, top 20, -145. Putting is certainly improving, the only somewhat weakness in his game. Not super happy about the price here, but it’s still a small value play.
Bet 3: Matthew NeSmith, top 10, +1,100. Have a feeling Matt has been looking at this tournament for a while. It’s the perfect fit for his game — total stud tee-to-green.
Bet 1: Abraham Ancer, to-win, +1,700. Am I being stubborn here? I’ve been waiting to deploy this for a while, and just because “everyone else” thinks he’s gonna win this week, doesn’t mean I should back off now. His Sunday scoring average is so good right now. The short knocker knows this course is perfect for him; very motivated and focused to get his name on the wall.
Bet 2: Joaquin Niemann, top South American, +115. Colonial sets up great for Niemann through his entire bag.
Bet 3: Two or more holes in one in the tournament, no, -275. Soft greens mean you’ll have the opportunity to get one close, but far less likely to roll out with the contours. Ain’t happening on the looong 3rd. The narrow 8th will be playing into a tricky wind, and with water on 13, guys steer away from two or three of the locations. No. 16 is a weird green, and the likelihood is probably greatest there. I just don’t see two aces in a week at this course.
The “old-school” gambler, an “old-school” gambler, @notthefakeW
Bet 1: Tony Finau, to-win, +1,700. Isn’t it about time he got back in the winner’s circle? It is.
Bet 2: Jordan Spieth, top 10, +123. Low hanging fruit here. I’ll bite.
Bet 3: Phil Mickelson to miss the cut, yes, +168. Good story last week. Not so much this week.
The pro bettor’s best bets
Erick Lindgren. Lindgren, the 2008 World Series of Poker Player of the Year, has won more than $10.5 million in poker tournament earnings and is an avid sports bettor. @EdogPoker
Bet 1: Jordan Spieth, to-win, +1,050. Maybe he will make a putt this week.
Bet 2: Justin Rose, top 10, +600. Team Rose is playing real clubs now, and it shows.
Bet 3: Abraham Ancer, top 5, +400. Shoot, he might win.
How to bet on the Charles Schwab Challenge — for free!
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