by Jeff Skinner
As the PGA Tour starts up again after a week hiatus the 30 survivors of the FedEx Cup Playoffs head into the Tour Championship all with a chance at winning the FedEx Cup. Yes believe it or not with a little tweaking of the points system by Tim Finchem, every single player can go home with the FedEx Cup and the ten million dollars.
All of the top five players control their own destiny. Rory McIlroy (1), Tiger Woods (2), Nick Watney (3), Phil Mickelson (4) and Brandt Snedeker (5) all will claim the cup with a victory but can still win the FedEx Cup without winning the Tour Championship depending how the others finish. For example, Rory could have a 29th place finish and still have a mathematical chance of winning the FedEx Cup.
As far as the other 25, they all need to win the Tour Championship and some help from all the other players.
I can imagine that Tim Finchem has employed a few dozen PHD’s and utilized some heavy duty computing time from his IBM partners to figure out the thousands of possibilities that come with the FedEx Cup Playoffs.
Finchem wanted more volatility in the playoffs and he got just what he wanted. I like this scenario. Coming into the playoffs Louis Oosthuizen had three top tens on the PGA Tour, including a playoff loss to Bubba Watson at the Masters. He finished the regular season with no wins but was in 34th place on the points list. He got hot in the playoffs and finished T5 at The Barclays, second at The Deutsche Bank and T16 at The BMW. And now if he stays hot and wins the Tour Championship with a T2 finish or worse by Rory, Louis wins the FedEx Cup. He can also finish second and still have a chance at winning the cup.
Even number 30, Scott Piercy can walk home with double hardware. All he needs to do is win the Tour Championship and have: McIlroy finish 29th or worse, Woods finish in a three way tie for 6th or worse, Watney finish in a four way tie for 3rd or worse, Mickelson finish T3 or worse, Snedeker finish in a three way tie for 2nd or worse and Oosthuizen finishes T2 or worse. And after all that he’ll be tied for the FedEx Cup and we’ll need another hundred PHD’s to figure out who he is tied with.
But you get the picture. Finchem got what he wanted: great players at the top of the points list, all poised to win the cup and all 25 others crossing their fingers.