Each week, “Chalk…or not?” looks at exclusive Tour Level Data to create a model that projects DraftKings ownership. The golfers with our highest projected ownership percentages and some other potentially low-owned golfers are then analyzed for you to give you a true ownership edge on the competition.
As always, get your week started correctly by reading the most comprehensive course breakdown in the industry: The First Cut by James Miles. Plus, Tour Level’s two unique cheat sheets for your statistical needs: Check out The Pin Sheet and The Form Generator. If it’s cash you want, it’s cash you’ll get in our Making The Cut piece.
Kevin Kisner ($9,700, 20.7 percent projected ownership): Kisner has been a beast at Colonial recently with a T5 in 2015 and a T10 last year. Per our Form Generator, Kisner ranks 31st or better year to date (YTD) in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee (31st), Approach (22nd), and Tee to Green (15th). With multiple appearances and finishes inside the top-10, Kisner fits the mold of a potential winner at Colonial.
Jason Dufner ($9,000, 24.2 percent ownership): I was down on Duf Daddy last week, but he proved me wrong with a top-15 at the Byron Nelson. Although his near 25 percent ownership is not the neighborhood I’d like my golfers to live in, Dufner’s recent mastery of Colonial is undeniable. His 30.81 Course History rank is fourth-best on our Pin Sheet: Dufner has two runner-up finishes in his last five trips here and was T6 last year. Dufner has three top-15 finishes in his most five most recent tournaments, so he’s in great form.
Jon Rahm ($11,800, 32.6 percent projected ownership): Rahm is a complete stud but he is making his debut at a tough track that has historically favored veterans and players who have played the course multiple times. And with projected ownership over 30 percent, there’s a case to be made for looking elsewhere in guaranteed prize pools this week. Although, it has been scientifically proven that young golfers from Spain can win in their debuts at Colonial — Sergio Garcia did it in 2001 — so nobody would blame you for firing up Rahm. He ranks first overall in our YTD Strokes Gained: Ball Striking metric on the Form Generator.
Sergio Garcia ($10,800, 27.4 percent ownership): The aforementioned Garcia has been brutally inconsistent in his two starts since his win at the Masters. Garcia has looked both awesome and terrible in the same tournament and sometimes the same round. That said he ranks ninth in our Recent Form metric from the Pin Sheet and fifth overall this week in YTD Strokes Gained: Around the Green.
Matt Kuchar ($10,100, 18.3 percent ownership): Kuchar rebounded nicely from a brutal MDF at the PLAYERS and finishedT9 at the Byron Nelson last week. Kuuuch missed the cut here at Colonial in 2014, but he was the runner-up in 2013 and finished T6 last year.
Paul Casey ($10,200, 22.6 percent projected ownership): Casey checks in with our fourth-highest projected ownership of the week at nearly 23 percent and the fourth-highest DK salary of the week. There’s no doubt Casey enters this tournament in fine form: His 46.46 Recent Form rank is the 12th-highest in our Pin Sheet. What’s concerning is his recent history at Colonial, which consists of a missed cut in 2014 and a 43rd-place finish from 2015. Why not save $100 and go with the likely to be lower-owned Kuchar?
Hump’s Hole Out
Last week’s choice, Smylie Kaufman, disappointed with a T35 finish, but he did drain 16 birdies along the way to get himself to a respectable 68 DK points. This week, I’m going with the Pat Perez ($7,600, 17.2 percent projected ownership). Perez is just too cheap this week and he ranks seventh overall in our Recent Form metric on the Pin Sheet. And per our Form Generator, Perez’s 0.938 four-week differential in Strokes Gained: Approach is the eighth best mark in the field. Perez finished T5 here last year and has a total of four top-10s here at Colonial.
Bowdo’s Picks From Down Undah!
A two-time PGA Tour Winner, Steven Bowditch, brings you the edge every week with what he calls “fliers from the semi-cut”. We here at TourLevel call them “Bowdo’s Picks From Down Undah!” These are players on the bottom end of both the ownership and salary spectrum that Bowdo thinks have the potential to surprise if everything comes together.
If you missed it last week, Bowdo’s plays were like shrimp on the barbie, mate — straight fiya! He recommended Cameron Tringale, who finished T9 and scored 82 DK points, Chad Campbell, who finished T13 and scored 80.5 DK points, and Boo Weekley, who ended up T40.
This week, Bowdo is fired up about Michael Kim ($6,600). Per Bowdo, Kim “putted like dogsh*t last week” but his +1.933 in Strokes Gained: Approach ranked second on our Form Generator, and his four week differential sits at a healthy 0.93. Kim also lit up with Strokes Gained: Tee to Green last week, ranking eighth with his 1.756 differential. Bowdo thinks Kim’s putter will come back — he ranks 16th year to date in Strokes Gained: Putting — and he could be a factor this week.
Daniel Summerhays ($7,100) has improved his Strokes Gained: Tee to Green game over the past couple of weeks, an area of his game that he has struggled with all year. Word on the street is, Summerhays has gone back to his old driver this week, and Bowdo says, “Watch out, the course is perfect for him”. Summerhays hasn’t missed a cut here at Colonial in his last four trips.
Bowdo also mentioned Ryan Blaum ($6,300), who ranked top-five in Strokes Gained-Approach differential last week, and said you could try dipping your toes in the Tri-Angle with Cameron Tringale ($6,400) again— who we have projected at less than three percent ownership — for all the same reasons as last week.
And call this one a gut-feeling: Patton Kizzire ($6,300), who has missed the cut in four of his last six events, (so he pretty much fits the profile of the last two winners on the PGA Tour this season) looked good hitting the ball. Plus, Bowdo said his golf shoes were really dope. Bowdo also pointed out that Billy Horschel ($7,900) is no stranger to posting back-to-back victories like he did at the end of the 2014 season. We currently have Horschel projected around six percent ownership.