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PGA DFS: Bethpage Black Course Preview and Trends

 

For the first time ever, the Black Course at Bethpage State Park will play host to a PGA Championship. We’ve seen Black host a couple of US Opens and Barclays events, but never a PGA Championship. The distinction is important because the course itself played very differently for those events. During the US Open in 2002 and 2009, the course played plus-4.9 and plus-2.9 to par, respectively. Both of those seasons, the course played as the most difficult course on the entire tour. For The Barclays in 2012 and 2016, it was a bit tamer at plus-0.7 strokes to par and finished between 10th and 15th most difficult for the year.

The course itself is a par 71 that plays about 7,500 yards. The average green size is 5,400 square feet which are smaller than the average tour stop. The length and setup of this course will mean that we’re seeing longer approaches than usual, which makes the greens difficult to hit. The Golf Course Superintendents Association of America doesn’t even bother to count the bunkers here because there are so many. They simply put eight acres of sand on the fact sheet. That’s nearly eight football fields worth of bunkers.

PAST WINNERS

Bethpage State Park (Black)

Golfer Year Winning Score DraftKings Points Event
Patrick Reed 2016 -9 104.5 The Barclays
Nick Watney 2012 -10 116.5 The Barclays
Lucas Glover 2009 -4 95 U.S. Open
Tiger Woods 2002 -3 88.5 U.S. Open

PGA Championship

Golfer Year Winning Score DraftKings Points Course
Brooks Koepka 2018 -16 115.5 Bellerive CC
Justin Thomas 2017 -8 104 Quail Hollow
Jimmy Walker 2016 -14 108.5 Baltusrol GC
Jason Day 2015 -20 135 Whistling Straits
Rory McIlroy 2014 -16 125 Valhalla GC

OFF THE TEE

As we take a look at off the tee numbers, it’s clear that distance helps you at Bethpage. Of the 20 golfers that have finished in the top five of DK scoring here, 13 (65%) hit the top 25 in distance while just nine (45%) hit that rank in accuracy. That shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone, considering the length of this course.

Driving Distance Rank (Last 24 Rounds) Golfer (Salary)
1 Bubba Watson ($8,000)
2 Cameron Champ ($6,900)
3 Rory McIlroy ($10,900)
4 Dustin Johnson ($11,100)
5 Luke List ($6,800)
6 Jon Rahm ($9,500)
7 Brooks Koepka ($10,400)
8 Keith Mitchell ($7,300)
9 Sam Burns ($6,800)
10 Byeong-Hun An ($7,100)

ON APPROACH

In the four events played here, 98 golfers have finished inside of the top 20 in DK scoring. Of that group, 52 (53%) finished inside of the top 25 in greens in regulation. The average golfer in the field will hit about 57% of greens if history is any indication. That’s a significant drop from the average course in my database which typically hovers around 63%. It translates to about five fewer greens hit which means golfers will need to bring their around-the-green game if they want to avoid the big numbers that lurk around every corner here.

GIR Rank (Last 24 Rounds) Golfer (Salary)
1 Tiger Woods ($11,300)
2 Rory McIlroy ($10,900)
3 Jim Furyk ($7,000)
4 Matt Kuchar ($8,700)
5 Jason Kokrak ($7,600)
6 Dustin Johnson ($11,100)
7 Jhonattan Vegas ($7,100)
8 Ross Fisher ($6,500)
9 Henrik Stenson ($7,900)
10 Corey Conners ($6,800)

Key Stats

  • Greens in Regulation
  • Driving Distance
  • SG: Around the Green
  • SG: Putting (Poa)

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