If you’re bummed out about the strength of the field for the FedEx St. Jude Classic this season, just wait because it will be one of the WGC events next year, as the Bridgestone Invitational will become the WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational and will move to August. For now, it is the final tune-up event for next week’s US Open at Shinnecock Hills, which is why we have a watered-down field on hand.

It makes sense for a tournament benefiting one of the best children’s hospitals in the world to do more to attract players. TPC Southwind in Memphis has hosted this event since 1989 on the 7,244-yard par 70 course. The purse for this event will take a sizable jump as a WGC event, which will certainly attract more players, not to mention what it will do for the Official World Golf Rankings. Right now, players are vying for a cut of $6.6 million and a first-place prize of $1.188 million.

Four of the top 20 in the Official World Golf Ranking are on hand, with Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, and Henrik Stenson as the three most notable names. Brooks Koepka is the other one, as those four players look to smooth out any rough edges in advance of next week’s major. Daniel Berger has a shot at winning his third straight FedEx St. Jude Classic, but the list of names that has won this thing lately speaks to the type of field we see. Fabian Gomez, Ben Crane, Harris English, Dustin Johnson, Harrison Frazar, and Lee Westwood are the other winners this decade. This is a pretty regular stop for DJ, but a lot of other notables do bypass this event.

The front nine at TPC Southwind is a lot friendlier than the back 9, at least until you get to scoring holes at 15 and 16. This course really doesn’t look that challenging from an aerial view or when standing behind the tee box, but the best winning score here this decade is just 13-under par, which has been done three times. The par 70 element does limit scoring a little bit, so you have to keep that in mind as well, but this is a course that can be challenging. Weather conditions are expected to be quite warm this week, so we could see some hard and fast greens as well.

The favorite this week per 5Dimes Sportsbook is Dustin Johnson at +620. DJ won this event back in 2012 by one shot over John Merrick. At the time, that was just his sixth professional win. Now, Johnson has 17 to his name. He is pretty much a fixture at this event, so we do have a lot of course form data, but we’ll start with his recent form, which is solid. Johnson hasn’t finished lower than 17th in his last five events and finished eighth at the Memorial thanks to a final-round 67. Johnson actually skipped this event last year, but was fifth in 2016 and 24th in 2014. He withdrew in 2015, but he usually does try to make this an annual stop. An out-of-nowhere 75 drove him down the board in 2014 and a 73 did the same in 2016, so if he can avoid a bad Saturday and replicate his other six rounds under par, he’ll be right there.

Brooks Koepka is the second-highest-rated player in the OWGR heading into this week and draws the second favorite role at +985. Koepka is now ninth in the OWGR after his second-place finish at Colonial. He skipped last week’s event at the Memorial in order to gear up for this one and the US Open. Koepka returned from an injury at the Zurich Classic and missed the cut in that team event, but he seems to be back on track with an 11th at TPC Sawgrass and that runner-up in Fort Worth. Koepka has three rounds of 63 over his last two events. In terms of this event, specifically, Koepka was 37th last year, which was a major step down from finishing second in 2016 and third in 2015. He was 19th in 2014. Koepka certainly plays well here and showed at Colonial that his wrist injury is very much in the rearview mirror.

Henrik Stenson and Phil Mickelson are both +1400 with the next competitors down the board at +2500. This will be Stenson’s first visit to TPC Southwind in six years, so we don’t have a whole lot of usable course form data. Only 13 of this week’s players are playing Shinnecock Hills next week and Stenson is one of them, so he clearly feels like he needs the work. It’s hard to argue, as he’s finished outside the top 10 in his last three events. That’s not to say he has played bad, but he could use a little more consistency. Stenson hit 87.5 percent of fairways and 77.8 percent of greens in regulation last week at Muirfield Village. The putter just let him down.

Phil Mickelson, meanwhile, putted very well at Muirfield Village, but sprayed the ball all over the place on Thursday and put himself too far out of contention. Still, it was a good return for Mickelson, who missed the cut at the PLAYERS Championship. He was 13th last week for his second top-15 of the month. The +1400 price tag isn’t great, but Shinnecock Hills might be a place for Lefty to turn back the clock. Lefty was ninth here last year, second in 2016, and third in 2015.

So, who is a good bet this week? Two-time reigning champion Daniel Berger is +2500 in his quest to become the first back-to-back-to-back winner of an event since Steve Stricker in the 2009-11 John Deere Classic. It really didn’t come easy for Berger last year, though. Kevin Chappell is a good bet this week at +5500. Chappell had four rounds in the 60s last year and finished 22nd back in 2015, including a second-round 64.

Chez Reavie is +6600 this week after a fourth-place finish last year and a 12th in 2016. He didn’t play in 2017. Another course form pick this week is Billy Horschel, but the +2500 price tag is a bit low. Horschel was fourth last year, eighth in 2015, and sixth in 2014.

Coverage of the 2018 FedEx St. Jude Classic will be on Golf Channel and CBS throughout the weekend.

Odds as of June 4, 2:30 p.m. ET:

Dustin Johnson +620

Brooks Koepka +985

Henrik Stenson +1400

Phil Mickelson +1400

Tony Finau +2500

Daniel Berger +2500

Adam Scott +2500

Billy Horschel +2500

Charl Schwartzel +2800

Byeong Hun An +2800

Joaquin Niemann +3300

Peter Uihlein +3300

Luke List +4000

Steve Stricker +4000

Keegan Bradley +4000

Charles Howell III +4000

Russell Knox +5000

Kevin Chappell +5500

J.B. Holmes +6600

Chez Reavie +6600

Chris Kirk +6600

Shane Lowry +6600

Scott Piercy +8000

Ryan Palmer +8000

Ollie Schniederjans +8000

Patrick Rodgers +8000

Danny Lee +8000

Brandt Snedeker +8000

Harris English +8000

Keith Mitchell +8000

Ben Crane +8000

Andrew Putnam +10000

Kevin Tway +10000

Grayson Murray +10000

Braden Thornberry +10000

Brian Gay +10000

C.T. Pan +12500

Austin Cook +12500

Corey Conners +12500

Joel Dahmen +12500

James Hahn +12500

Lucas Glover +12500

Matt Jones +12500

Shawn Stefani +12500

Trey Mullinax +12500

Tom Hoge +12500

Tom Lovelady +15000

Tyrone Van Aswegen +15000

Vaughn Taylor +15000

Troy Merritt +15000

Nate Lashley +15000

Nicholas Lindheim +15000

Sam Ryder +15000

Seamus Power +15000

John Huh +15000

J.T. Poston +15000

David Lingmerth +15000

Cameron Percy +15000

Bronson Burgoon +15000

Ben Martin +15000

Abraham Ancer +15000

Harold Varner III +17500

Johnson Wagner +17500

Sam Saunders +17500

Scott Stallings +20000

Retief Goosen +20000

Matt Every +20000

Michael Thompson +20000

Patton Kizzire +20000

Padraig Harrington +20000

William McGirt +20000

Wesley Bryan +20000

Stewart Cink +20000

Talor Gooch +20000

Ethan Tracy +20000

Fabian Gomez +20000

Chad Campbell +20000

Brian Stuard +20000

Brice Garnett +20000

Denny McCarthy +20000

Daniel Summerhays +20000

Ben Silverman +20000

Aaron Baddeley +25000

Cody Gribble +25000

Conrad Shindler +25000

Derek Fathauer +25000

David Hearn +25000

Dominic Bozzelli +25000

Brandon Harkins +25000

Hunter Mahan +25000

Kelly Kraft +25000

John Peterson +25000

Stephan Jaeger +25000

Sung Kang +25000

Tyler Duncan +25000

Zac Blair +25000

Peter Malnati +25000

Nick Taylor +25000

Lanto Griffin +25000

Richy Werenski +25000

Rick Lamb +25000

Ryan Blaum +25000

Robert Garrigus +25000

Robert Streb +25000

Scottie Scheffler +25000

Scott Brown +25000

Cameron Tringale +27500

Brett Stegmaier +30000

Dawson Armstrong +30000

Jonathan Byrd +30000

George McNeill +30000

Greg Chalmers +30000

Eric Axley +30000

Ricky Barnes +30000

Michael Kim +30000

Mackenzie Hughes +30000

Martin Flores +30000

Martin Piller +30000

Adam Schenk +30000

Blayne Barber +32500

Rob Oppenheim +35000

Will MacKenzie +40000

Steve Wheatcroft +40000

Bob Estes +40000

Andrew Yun +40000

Billy Hurley III +50000

Casey Wittenberg +50000

Dicky Pride +50000

D.A. Points +50000

Grant Hirschman +50000

J.J. Henry +50000

Jonathan Randolph +50000

K.J. Choi +50000

Jon Curran +50000

Kyle Thompson +50000

Will Claxton +50000

Tommy Gainey +50000

Troy Matteson +50000

Xinjun Zhang +50000

Zecheng Dou +50000

Roberto Diaz +50000

Matt Atkins +50000

Brendon de Jonge +55000

John Daly +75000

Smylie Kaufman +75000

Johan Kok +100000

David Berganio, Jr. +100000




Many of the world’s top golfers are taking the week off to prepare for next week’s U.S. Open but there are still 8 of the top 30 in the latest world rankings in the field for the FedEx St. Jude Classic, which begins on Thursday in Memphis. Rickie Fowler is the favorite at odds of +800 with Brooks Koepka the second choice at odds of +1200 and Adam Scott the third choice at odds of +1300. This could be a good week to take a longshot, as the winner of this event has gotten their first PGA Tour win in four of the last six years.

The FedEx St. Jude Classic takes place at TPC Southwind in Memphis, Tennessee from June 8th through June 11th with Rickie Fowler listed as the favorite.

Top Contenders

Before we get to the list of top contenders we want to consider what is needed to win at TPC Southwind. The stats that have mattered in the past are Strokes Gained: Approach, Strokes Gained: Off-The-Tee and Driving Accuracy.

Rickie Fowler +800

Fowler is just 45th in Strokes Gained: Off-The-Tee and he is 5th in Strokes Gained” Approach. The concern with taking Fowler is that he has to know the history in that no player has ever won the PGA Tour event the week before the U.S. Open and then gone on to win the Open. I think Fowler is overvalued at these odds.

Brooks Koepka +1200

Flip a coin if you can figure out which Koepka will show up. He can look so good one week and then struggle the next. I don’t like that he is 117th in Approach so I will pass.

Adam Scott +1300

Scott is 30th in Approach and 54th in Off the Tee but his odds are 13-1. I think those odds are simply too low on a golfer who hasn’t won in more than a year.

Francesco Molinari +2000

I really like Molinari this week at odds of 20-1. He is tied for 29th in Off the Tee and 2nd in Approach. He is a very accurate driver and he has spent a lot more time this season on the PGA Tour where he has been in contention than on the European Tour.

Phil Mickelson +2500

Forget about a U.S. Open prep for Phil, as he is skipping next week’s major to go to his daughter’s high school graduation. Mickelson has played well in this event in the past but how excited can you get about taking a golfer who has not won since 2013?


If you want a couple of longshots who could hit at a big price then Steve Stricker and Kyle Stanley are worth a look. Stricker has always been known for his driving accuracy and he is still trying to get into the U.S. Open, while Stanley is 7th on the PGA Tour in Approach.  They are both listed at odds of 40-1.

This event is played at TPC Southwind, which is a par 70 that is 7,239 yards. It has hosted this event since 1989.

CBS and Golf Channel will provide coverage of the FedEx St. Jude Classic.

FedEx St. Jude Classic Odds

Rickie Fowler +800

Brooks Koepka +1200

Adam Scott +1300

Francesco Molinari +2000

Phil Mickelson +2500

Russell Henley +2500

Billy Horschel +3000

Charl Schwartzel +3000

Daniel Berger +3500

Kevin Chappell +3500

Kyle Stanley +4000

Ryan Palmer +4000

Steve Stricker +4000

Rafa Cabrera Bello +5000

Danny Lee +5500

Ian Poulter +5500

Kevin Tway +5500

Graeme McDowell +6000

William McGirt +6000

J.B. Holmes +6500

Scott Piercy +6500

Harris English +7000

Keegan Bradley +7000

Peter Uihlein +7000

Russell Knox +7000

Ben Martin +7500

Seung-Yul Noh +7500

Stewart Cink +7500

Daniel Summerhays +8000

Jamie Lovemark +8000

Chris Kirk +9000

Smylie Kaufman +9000

Brian Gay +10000

Cameron Tringale +10000

Chad Campbell +10000

Harold Varner III +10000

Nick Watney +10000

Sung Kang +10000

J.T. Poston +12500

Jim Furyk +12500

Xander Schauffele +12500

Bryson Dechambeau +13500

Brandon Hagy +14000

Brian Stuard +14000

Camilo Villegas +14000

Hudson Swafford +14000

Kyle Reifers +14000

Padraig Harrington +14000

Patrick Rodgers +14000

Ricky Barnes +14000

Scott Brown +14000

Vijay Singh +14000

David Hearn +15000

John Huh +15000

Luke List +15000

Matt Jones +15000

Retief Goosen +15000

Chez Reavie +16000

John Peterson +16000

Willy Wilcox +16000

Boo Weekley +17500

Cameron Percy +17500

D.A. Points +17500

Grayson Murray +17500

Kelly Kraft +17500

Scott Stallings +17500

Seamus Power +17500

Sebastian Munoz +17500

Shawn Stefani +17500

Zac Blair +17500

Ben Crane +20000

Blayne Barber +20000

Bob Estes +20000

Chris Stroud +20000

Dominic Bozzelli +20000

Ernie Els +20000

Julian Etulain +20000

Patton Kizzire +20000

Robert Streb +20000

Sam Saunders +20000

Andres Gonzales +22500

Bryce Molder +22500

Jonathan Randolph +22500

Ryan Blaum +22500

Tim Wilkinson +22500

Tom Hoge +22500

Tyrone Van Aswegen +22500

Bill Lunde +25000

Cody Gribble +25000

Fabian Gomez +25000

Gonzalo Fdez-castano +25000

J.J. Henry +25000

Ken Duke +25000

Michael Putnam +25000

Robert Garrigus +25000

Spencer Levin +25000

Tag Ridings +25000

Whee Kim +25000

Alex Cejka +27500

Carl Pettersson +27500

Greg Owen +27500

Hiroshi Iwata +27500

K.J. Choi +27500

Roberto Castro +27500

Troy Merritt +27500

Davis Love III +30000

Joel Dahmen +30000

John Rollins +30000

Johnson Wagner +30000

Nicholas Lindheim +30000

Rory Sabbatini +30000

Ryan Brehm +30000

Bobby Wyatt +35000

Brett Drewitt +35000

Brett Stegmaier +35000

Hunter Mahan +35000

Jason Bohn +35000

Mark Hubbard +35000

Michael Thompson +35000

Nicholas Thompson +35000

Sam Horsfield +35000

Trey Mullinax +35000

Andrew Loupe +40000

Arjun Atwal +40000

Brad Fritsch +40000

Chad Collins +40000

Derek Fathauer +40000

Garrett Osborn +40000

Jordan Russell +40000

Mark Anderson +40000

Martin Flores +40000

Matt Every +40000

Max Homa +40000

Miguel Angel Carballo +40000

Peter Malnati +40000

Richy Werenski +40000

Rick Lamb +40000

Ryan Armour +40000

Steve Wheatcroft +40000

Stuart Appleby +40000

Will MacKenzie +40000

Braden Thornberry +50000

Brian Campbell +50000

Chip Deason +50000

Richie Schembechler II +50000

Zack Sucher +50000

Dicky Pride +60000

S.J. Park +60000

Shane Bertsch +60000

Steven Alker +60000

Tyler Aldridge +60000

Bobby Gates +75000

Steven Bowditch +100000

Oliver Peacock +150000

David Duval +200000