2014 PGA Tour Predictions- BOLD Style #GetYourPopcornReady

Ah, nothing screams golf quite like these freeze-your-balatas-off arctic temps like we’ve had here lately across most of the country.  I mean seriously, who hasn’t been taking half swings in your living room trying to keep the feel going while also trying to avoid another my-wife-absolutely-can’t-see-this divot from the carpet.  Well boom, here we are at the kickoff of the 2014 year in golf and ah yes, it’s time for some predictions.  Bold predictions- think A1 steak sauce BOLD.

–        I’ll just get this out of the way first since it seems golf journalists everywhere are already in Tiger suck-up mode just one day into the New Year (shocker)- Yes, I do think Tiger will win a major this year.  I actually thought he’d win the British last year, but this will finally be the year to say hello to number 15.  For the record I’ll predict it happening at the British at Royal Liverpool (Tiger won there in ’06).  Nothing bold about any of that though.

–        Phil Mickelson will not win the U.S. Open at Pinehurst this year (he won’t even be a factor on Sunday).  In fact, he’ll never win the U.S. Open in his career (it’d all be just a little too perfect).

–        Rory’s extreme volatility with everything in his game and life in general will continue.  Think snappy quacking OB tee balls galore with a host of wild MCs, along with some finally-clicking salty good scores.  His bad is as bad as a that of a hungover mini-Tour player, and his good is better than anyone ’s on Tour, even Tiger’s (today’s Tiger anyway).  His engagement to Caroline will have him jet-setting continually across the globe watching her slap a green furry ball over a net, which will only further derail his game.  But, his talent is so supreme that he will still improve his performance as compared to last year and I believe will finally win at least once this season at some point.

–        Jason Day will have a prodigiously sized bank account at the end of 2014. Ok, he already does, but seriously, the dude has wicked good talent and will finally break through and win his second event on the PGA Tour, and his third….including a major (knocking on the door as many times as Jason has and it’s bound to open at some point).

–        Rickie Fowler won’t win anything, again this year.  25-years-old with 1 PGA Tour victory, yet he’s one of the top 5 most popular players on Tour.  Eventually the aura of the snazzy deer hunting orange shirts, hyper colored belts and young punk-rocker-type everything just won’t be cool anymore when people realize what an over-hyped, giant bust he has been.  Time to start kicking your own ass into contention, Rickie.

–        Chesson Hadley.  Yep, remember that name.

–        Jim Furyk will have a major downer of a year.  Unfortunately at age 43, Jimbo’s best days are behind him.  His major championship heartache at last year’s PGA will be tough to overcome and frankly that octopus-falling-out-of-a-tree-like swing that he has gets tougher to rhythmically time each and every year.  Finished 23rd in last year’s FedEx Cup Standings, don’t think he’ll even make East Lake this year.

–        John Peterson will be a household name by mid-summer.  The 24-year-old LSU grad went on a ridiculously hot run of 5 straight top 5s to end his Nationwide Tour season (4 top 3s) and has the game and attitude to be a star on the big boy Tour.  Wouldn’t be surprised to see him be a captain’s pick for this year’s Ryder Cup team with his fiery, passionate attitude (think Keegan-like).

–        Webb Simpson will have a monster West Coast swing, including Hawaii this week.  Call it a gut feeling.

–        Luke Donald will have a major bounceback year.  His fallout from 4th, to 16th to 55th in the FedEx Cup Standings the past three seasons isn’t sitting well with him as he has way too damn much talent to plummet in the rankings like that.  Think two victories and top 10 in the FedEx Cup Standings by season’s end for the Englishman.

–        Luke Guthrie will be the other Luke to make some good things happen on Tour in 2014, as he now has his feet wet coming off his first year on Tour in which he finished a respectable 72nd in the FedEx Cup Standings, including a solo 3rd at the Honda Classic.  Back in ’12 he posted back-to-back victories on the Nationwide Tour and won 7 tournaments including 2 Big Ten Championships back in his college days at the University of Illinois.  Yep, the kid’s got some serious talent, time to bust out on the big stage, Luke.

So, there you have it.  Honest, fresh and bold, just the way I love to serve it up.  Get your popcorn ready, the (resumption of the) 2014 PGA Tour season is here.

Joel Harrington

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