Charles Schwab Challenge picks: Who experts (and golf fans!) think will win

Scottie Scheffler and Jordan Spieth walk towards the 17th green during the first round of the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club on February 17, 2022 in Pacific Palisades, California

Jordan Spieth, left, and Scottie Scheffler earlier this year.

getty images

The tournament your grandma knew as the Colonial is now the Charles Schwab Challenge, and that’s not all that has changed since the birth of the event, in 1946, at Colonial Country Club, in Fort Worth.

The course is longer. Drives fly farther. And there are many more ways for fans to get involved.

Among them: Chirp Golf. An affiliate of, Chirp is a free-to-play mobile game that features weekly contests including a $5,000 Jackpot Pick ‘Em and other live shot-by-shot precaution games. One of those games is a Trifecta contest that calls for users to pick three players: a favorite, a contender, and a long shot.

Nearly 1,000 users have already signed up for this week’s Trifecta, a health sample size that gives us a sense of where public opinion is leaning.

In the favorite’s category (players ranked 1-20 in the world), last week’s PGA Championship winner, Justin Thomas, has the strongest backing so far among Chirp users, with 21.48 percent of the vote. Scottie Scheffler (19.57 percent) is the next most popular pick, followed by Jordan Spieth (14.77) and Will Zalatoris (12.75 percent).

2022 Charles Schwab Challenge odds: Your PGA champion is back in action and the betting favorite this week
By: Kevin Cunningham

Among the contenders (ranked 21-60 in the world), Webb Simpson and Bubba Watson are tied as the top choices (each has 17.45 percent of the backing), followed by Sebastian Munoz (8.84 percent).

And then there are the long shots (ranked 61 and higher). In that category, Harry Higgs leads the way (19.35 percent), with Rory Sabbatini (13.09 percent) and Denny McCarthy just behind.

If you’d like to join the fun, you can download the Chirp App here.

And if you’re looking for guidance from our experts, here are Charles Schwab Trifecta picks from three staffers.

Jessica Marksbury, senior editor:

Favorite: Jordan Spieth (rank: 9)

I’m not going to be the one to bet against Jordan in Texas

Contender: Patrick Reed (rank: 38)

Another major champ from the Lone Star state, he was T7 at Colonial in 2020. That’s good enough for me.

Long shot: Ryan Palmer (rank: 93)

Not only is Colonial Palmer’s home course, but he’s also having a strong season, with four to-25s and a T5 at the Byron Nelson.

Nick Piastowski, senior editor:

Favorite: Viktor Hovland (rank: 7)

Justin Thomas hits drive at 2022 PGA Championship
2022 Charles Schwab Challenge tee times: Round 1 groupings for Thursday
By: Kevin Cunningham

Colonial demands precision. Few players hit it straighter.

Contender: Max Homa (rank: 29)

A win two weeks ago, followed by a strong showing at the PGA Championship. Yes, please.

Long shot: Ryan Palmer (rank: 93)

I’m with Jessica. Easy choice. Member here. He might not win, but he’ll be in the mix.

Josh Sens, senior writer:

Favorite: Scottie Scheffler (rank: 1)

I’m not reading too much into Scheffler’s missed cut last week at Southern Hills. If anything, it should be motivation.

Tommy Fleetwood (rank: 41)

Quietly, Fleetwood has been rounding into form.

Long shot: David Riley (rank: 113)

Riley has shown us a lot this year. He’s a much stronger player than what his world ranking reflects.

Josh Sens Editor

A golf, food and travel writer, Josh Sens has been a GOLF Magazine contributor since 2004 and now contributes across all of GOLF’s platforms. His work has been anthologized in The Best American Sportswriting. He is also the co-author, with Sammy Hagar, of Are We Having Any Fun Yet: the Cooking and Partying Handbook.