- Xander Schauffele leads by one shot after 54 holes with a packed leaderboard at the Charles Schwab Challenge
- Many major champions ready to pounce including Justin Thomas, Gary Woodland, Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy, Patrick Reed, and Justin Rose
- See the updated live odds at Colonial heading into Sunday’s final round
The return to the PGA Tour after a 13-week hiatus has not disappointed, with a star-studded leaderboard at the Charles Schwab Challenge offering up fireworks for a heated Sunday battle between many of the games best. The #12-ranked player in the world, Xander Schauffele, leads the pack by the slimmest of margins, with five players a shot back and 14 golfers within three shots of top spot.
At the beginning of the week, Schauffele’s odds to win his fifth PGA Tour event were set at +3000, but with a weak track record around Colonial (two missed cuts and a T-48th finish), there wasn’t much indication he’d have the edge entering the final round.
Should he stumble, there are plenty of luminaries ready to take advantage with 2017 PGA-champion Justin Thomas and 2016 Charles Schwab-winner Jordan Spieth hot on his heels sporting the shortest odds after the X-Man.
Live Charles Schwab Challenge Odds
|Harold Varner III||T-7th||-11||+2500|
Odds taken June 13th.
Xander Schauffele Has Struggled Converting 54-Hole Leads Into Wins
Throughout his young career, Xander Schauffele has earned a reputation of a workhorse grinder capable of turning deficits into victories – all four of his PGA Tour titles have been won when he trailed heading into the final round. However, his track record of converting 54-hole leads into victories leaves a lot to be desired.
54-hole leader Xander Schauffele seeks his fifth PGA TOUR victory at the Charles Schwab Challenge.
All four of his wins to date have come after facing a deficit of at least two shots entering the final round. He is 0-for-3 when holding the 54-hole lead/co-lead.
— PGA TOUR Communications (@PGATOURComms) June 13, 2020
The X-Man will be in tough with so many giants of the game right on his heels, especially at a track that he’s spun his wheels on in three previous attempts. He’s been good-not-great this week at 36th in strokes gained: around the greens and 17th in SG: putting, which is offset by being tied for first in greens in regulation.
With a bunched leaderboard, his previous track record failing to convert 54-hole leads, and his decent-but-not-spectacular numbers around the greens this week, the value simply isn’t there at +350 to wager on Schauffele.
Past Champion Jordan Spieth Poised For Victory
It’s unfathomable that Jordan Spieth hasn’t tasted victory on the PGA Tour since winning the 2017 Open Championship, but this week presents an amazing opportunity to get the monkey off his back. He won this event in 2016 and finished tied second in both 2015 and 2017, so he’s a horse for this course.
Jordan Spieth (currently at -12) is seeking his 1st 54-hole lead on the PGA TOUR since August 2017.
He's also trying to end the longest victory drought of his PGA TOUR career. This is Spieth's 61st start since his last PGA TOUR victory (2017 Open Championship). pic.twitter.com/yp3cgD4Qll
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) June 13, 2020
His putting has been smoking hot as he’s first in strokes gained on the greens through three rounds, but most importantly, his long game has finally returned. This season he was a horrific 227th in driving accuracy and 161st in SG: tee-to-green; through 54 holes, he’s T-15th and 18th, respectively, in those two categories.
Hogan’s Alley has been his respite, so plunking cash down on him at +550 is enticing with him being just a shot back.
Last Five Charles Schwab Challenge Winners
Best Live Value Picks at Charles Schwab Challenge
- Gary Woodland (+900): Last year’s US Open champ lost 25 pounds in quarantine and it’s working well for him thus far, as he’s just a shot back and is first in SG: approach to the green this week plus third in scrambling, a lethal combination.
- Justin Rose (+2500): If you bet on the 2018 champ pre-tournament, you’d be pretty happy with his surprisingly high +5000 odds. Just three off the lead, two late bogeys pushed Rose down the leaderboard but he’s been putting beautifully this week, ranking second and you’re getting great value on him because of so many names to leap frog.
- Daniel Berger (+2800): Before quarantine, Berger was on fire, posting T-4th, T-5th and T-9th results in his three prior events. Professionally lurking just two behind, Berger has racked up 27 consecutive rounds at par or better, the longest active streak on tour.
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