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2014 TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola (The 4th of 4 events in the FedExCup Playoffs), Atlanta, GA, September 11-14, 2014; FedExCup Points: 2,500; Purse: $8,000,000, East Lake Golf Club, Par/Yards: 35-35—70/7,307 - Second-Round Notes – Friday, September 12, 2014

Weather: Mostly cloudy. Temperatures in the mid- to high 80s.  Winds WNW 5-10.

Due to expected afternoon weather issues, second-round tee times were played from 8:45 – 11:00 a.m. (versus 11:45 a.m. – 2 p.m.).

Second-Round Leaderboard

Billy Horschel 66-66=132 (-8) (pictured by Getty Images)

Rory McIlroy 69-65=134 (-6)

Jason Day 67-67=134 (-6)

Chris Kirk 66-68=134 (-6)

Kevin Na 70-66=136 (-4)

Ryan Palmer 69-67=136 (-4)

Cameron Tringale 68-68=136 (-4)

Jim Furyk 67-69=136 (-4)

The 29-player TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola is the culmination of the 2013-14 PGA TOUR Season and the final event of the FedExCup Playoffs. The road to the TOUR Championship began with the top 125 players qualifying for The Barclays (won by Hunter Mahan), followed by the top 100 players at the Deutsche Bank Championship (won by Chris Kirk) and the top 70 players at the BMW Championship (won by Billy Horschel).  A points reset took place following the BMW Championship giving all 29 players in the field at the TOUR Championship a mathematical chance to win the FedExCup.

The top-five players in the FedExCup standings entering the TOUR Championship control their own destiny

and will win the FedExCup title should they go on to victory at East Lake.

FEC   Name                 Scores            Position   FedExCup Projection

1         Chris Kirk           66-68               T2             2

2         Billy Horschel    66-66               1                1                             

3         Bubba Watson  67-73               T14            4

4         Rory McIlroy     69-65               T2              3

5         Hunter Mahan  74-72               T25            5

For the second time in as many rounds this week, three players from the FedExCup top-five are in the top five of the TOUR Championship leaderboard, tying for the most after any round; in round one it was T1 Chris Kirk (No. 1); T1 Billy Horschel (No. 2); and T3 Bubba Watson (No. 3).  The only other time that happened in FedExCup history was after 36 holes in 2008: (2nd) Sergio Garcia (No. 3); (4th) Camilo Villegas (No. 2); (T5) Mike Weir (No. 5).

This is the youngest field at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola in FedExCup history, with an average age of 31; 15 players in the field are in their 20s.  The youngest winner of the FedExCup is Bill Haas in 2011 at the age of 29 years, 4 months and 1 day.  The youngest winner of the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola in the FedExCup era is Camilo Villegas in 2008 at the age of 26 years, 8 months, 21 days.

Here’s a look at the top-10 leaderboard with ages:

Billy Horschel  27 years, 9 months, 7 days

Rory McIlroy  25 years, 4 months, 10 days

Jason Day 26 years, 10 months, 2 days

Chris Kirk 29 years, 4 months, 6 days

Kevin Na  30 years, 11 months, 30 days

Ryan Palmer  37 years, 11 months, 29 days

Cameron Tringale  27 years, 21 days

Jim Furyk  44 years, 4 months, 2 days

Rickie Fowler 25 years, 9 months, 1 day

Justin Rose 34 years, 1 month, 15 days

Russell Henley  25 years, 5 months, 2 days

Billy Horschel – No. 2 in the FedExCup, 66-66=132 (-8)

After a bogey-free opening round, Billy Horschel carded six birdies against two bogeys in round two for another 66(-4), and enough to open up a two-shot lead at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola after 36 holes.   Horschel, who had never held/shared a first-round lead until Thursday, owns four previous 36-hole leads, none of which resulted in victory:

Event     Finish

2011 The McGladrey Classic  T20

2012 Sanderson Farms Championship  3

2013 Valero Texas Open  T3

2013 U.S. Open  T4

Thanks to his top-five ranking, Horschel wins the FedExCup if he wins the TOUR Championship.  He could also capture the FedExCup without a victory on Sunday.

To win the FedExCup – No. 2 Billy Horschel (Currently in first place; projected No. 1)

  • If he wins the TOUR Championship, he wins the FedExCup
  • If Jason Day wins the TOUR Championship, Horschel can win the FedExCup by finishing second or third
  • If Chris Kirk or Rory McIlroy wins the TOUR Championship, Horschel can’t win the FedExCup

R1 at a glance: 6 of 14 fairways, 16 of 18 greens, 30 putts.

R2 at a glance: 8 of 14 fairways, 10 of 18 greens, 3 of 3 sand saves, 24 putts.

At 27 years, 9 months, 7 days old, a win this week would make Horschel the fifth-youngest winner in the TOUR Championship’s 28-year history and the youngest FedExCup champion in history.

Horschel edged Bubba Watson by two strokes to win last week’s BMW Championship, his second PGA TOUR victory (2013 Zurich Classic of New Orleans). He is seeking to join Tiger Woods (2007 and 2009) as the only players to win the BMW Championship and the FedExCup in the same season.

Horschel’s win last week was his third top-10 finish in seven FedExCup Playoffs starts. Here are the others: 2014 Deutsche Bank Championship (T2), 2013 TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola (T7).

Horschel’s FedExCup Playoffs at a glance

Year     Final Rank Began Playoffs Rk Barclays  Deutsche Bank BMW        TOUR Champ

2011     170

2012     143

2013     16                6                              CUT (17)   T70 (22)              T18 (22)   T7 (16)

2014                         69                            CUT (82)  T2 (20)                 1 (2)

Rory McIlroy – No. 4 in the FedExCup, 69-65=134 (-6)

Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy boosted his chances of taking home the FedExCup with a 65 in round two, his lowest round in six attempts at East Lake and the low round of the tournament thus far.  At No. 4 in the FedExCup standings, McIlroy is guaranteed to win the FedExCup with a victory at the TOUR Championship.

To win the FedExCup – No. 4 Rory McIlroy (Currently T2; projected No. 3)

  • If he wins the TOUR Championship, he wins the FedExCup
  • If Jason Day wins the TOUR Championship, McIlroy can win the FedExCup by finishing solo second
  • If Chris Kirk or Billy Horschel wins the TOUR Championship, McIlroy can’t win the FedExCup

McIlroy was No. 35 in the FedExCup standings after the U.S. Open, and has since rocketed up the list with his three consecutive wins: to No. 11 after The Open Championship; to No. 3 after the Bridgestone Invitational; and to No. 1 after the PGA Championship. He has been steady in the FedExCup Playoffs with a T22 at The Barclays, a T5 at the Deutsche Bank Championship and a T8 at the BMW Championship, his 11th top-10 finish of the season.

At the age of 25 years, 4 months, 10 days, McIlroy would be the youngest FedExCup champion in history and the youngest TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola winner in the FedExCup era (second overall to Tiger Woods at 23 years, 10 months, 1 day, 1999 at Champions GC).

McIlroy would join Tiger Woods as the only players to win a major championship and the FedExCup title in the same season.  Woods did so in 2007 when he won the PGA Championship and the FedExCup.

McIlroy’s best finish in the FedExCup came in 2012 when he won two Playoff events and was just edged by Brandt Snedeker for the FedExCup title.

R1 at a glance: 5 of 14 fairways, 11 of 18 greens, 28 putts.

R2 at a glance: 9  of 14 fairways, 14 of 18 greens, 0 of 1 sand saves, 27 putts.

McIlroy’s FedExCup Playoffs history at a glance

Year     Final Rank  Began Playoffs Rk  Barclays Deutsche Bank  BMW       TOUR Champ

2010     36                21                              T56 (28)  T37 (29)               T37 (36)

2012     2                  3                                T24 (4)    1 (1)                     1 (1)          T10 (2)

2013     50                49                              T19 (3)    T47 (41)               T59 (50)

2014                         1                                T22 (2)    T5 (2)                   T8 (4)

Jason Day – No. 10 in the FedExCup, 67-67=134 (-6)

After two early birdies in round one (Nos. 2 and 6), Australia’s Jason Day went bogey free until the 18th hole on Friday, carding a 67 in round two to stand within two shots of Billy Horschel’s 36-hole lead in his fourth start at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola.   At No. 10 in the FedExCup standings, Day needs a win this week and some help from several others in the field in order to win the FedExCup.

To win the FedExCup – No. 10 Jason Day (Currently T2; projected No. 6)

  • Must win the TOUR Championship, AND
  • Chris Kirk must finish fifth or worse (currently T2)
  • Billy Horschel must finish in a 3-way tie for third or worse (currently in first place)
  • Rory McIlroy must finish T2 or worse (currently T2)

Day’s 67 matches his career-low round in 14 attempts at East Lake Golf Club (R1/2011, R2/2011, R4/2013, R1/2014).  His career scoring average in the TOUR Championship is now 69.07.

Day’s best finish in the TOUR Championship came in 2011 when he finished T6 and posted a career-best 12th-place finish in the FedExCup overall.

Making his 151st PGA TOUR start, Day is seeking his third victory (2010 AT&T Byron Nelson Championship, 2014 World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship).  He would be the second Australian to win the TOUR Championship (Adam Scott, 2006) and seventh international player.  A win this week would make him the sixth-youngest winner in the TOUR Championship’s 28-year history and, should he go on to also win the FedExCup, he would be the youngest FedExCup champion in history.

Last week, Day withdrew during the second round of the BMW Championship with a back injury. This week, his caddie Colin Swatton walked in after six holes on Thursday due to his own back issues.  Day’s mental coach Jason Goldsmith took over for Day’s 67 (-3) in round one and was back on the bag for round two.

R1 at a glance: 7 of 14 fairways, 11 of 18 greens, 27 putts.

R2 at a glance: 5 of 14 fairways, 10 of 18 greens, 25 putts.

Day’s FedExCup Playoffs history at a glance

Year     Final Rank  Began Playoffs Rk  Barclays  Deutsche Bank  BMW TOUR Champ

2008     83                127                            T31 (96)   T50 (83)

2009     48                67                              T12 (46)   T19 (37)               T59 (48)

2010     8                  28                              T5 (14)     T2 (4)                   T54 (6)         T17 (8)

2011     12                14                              T13 (15)   T3 (6)                   T49 (10)       T6 (12)

2012     87                113                            T24 (88)   T51 (87)

2013     17                14                              T25 (16)      T13 (12)            T4 (14)          T14 (17)

2014                         34                              T2 (7)          T7 (7)                WD (10)

Chris Kirk – No. 1 in the FedExCup, 66-68=134 (-6)

Chris Kirk posted a bogey-free 66 in round one of the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola, but had four bogeys on his card on Friday against six birdies to post a 68 (-2) and finish two shots behind leader Billy Horschel.

To win the FedExCup – No. 1 Chris Kirk (Currently T2; projected No. 2)

  • If he wins the TOUR Championship, he wins the FedExCup
  • If Jason Day wins the TOUR Championship, Kirk can win the FedExCup by finishing fourth or higher
  • If Billy Horschel or Rory McIlroy wins the TOUR Championship, Kirk can’t win the FedExCup

Kirk is looking to win the TOUR Championship and the FedExCup in his first start.  Here’s a list of players who have won the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola in their first appearance: Chad Campbell (2003), Bart Bryant (2005), Bill Haas (2011) and Henrik Stenson (2013). Kirk could join Vijay Singh (2008) and Henrik Stenson (2013) as the only players to win the Deutsche Bank Championship and FedExCup in the same season.

R1 at a glance: 9 of 14 fairways, 13 of 18 greens, 3 of 3 sand saves, 26 putts.

R2 at a glance: 7 of 14 fairways, 13 of 18 greens, 1 of 3 sand saves, 29 putts.

Kirk has 25 made cuts in 27 starts this season, with wins at The McGladrey Classic and Deutsche Bank Championship.

Year     Final Rank Began Playoffs Rk  Barclays   Deutsche Bank  BMW TOUR Champ

2011     42               33                              Cut (41)     T31 (43)              T31(42)

2012     49               80                              T46 (81)     T35 (66)              T12 (49)

2013     34               31                              Cut (47)      T17 (37)              T24 (34)

2014                             10                                 T53 (17)         1 (1)                        T36 (1)

Second-Round Leader Statistics

The second-round leader/co-leader has won 13 of 27 times at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola. The last was Henrik Stenson in 2013 (wire-to-wire winner).

The second-round leader/co-leader has won 16 of 43 stroke-play events this season, most recently Rory McIlroy at the PGA Championship.

Miscellaneous Notes

Making his 16th start at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola (trailing only Phil Mickelson’s 17), Jim Furyk posted a 69 (-1), his 95th par-or-better round in the history of the FedExCup Playoffs, with Phil Mickelson next on the list with 82.  Currently T5 and four shots back, a win this week would make Furyk the oldest in the 28-year history of the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola (44 years, 4 months, 2 days old; current record is Mark McCumber in 1994 at 43 years, 1 month, 23 days old).

Furyk owns the most top-10 finishes in the FedExCup Playoffs. Of the top five players with the most top 10s in the Playoffs, he is the only one who advanced to the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola.

Name Top 10s
Jim Furyk 14
Steve Stricker 13
Camilo Villegas 10
Phil Mickelson 10
Tiger Woods 10

Most rounds in the 60s in the Playoffs: 2007 200809 2010 2011 2012 2013 Total

Name Sub-70s
Steve Stricker 62
Jim Furyk 62
Adam Scott 60

Most rounds at par or better in the Playoffs: 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Total

Name Par-or-Better
Jim Furyk 95
Phil Mickelson 82
Steve Stricker 80
Bubba Watson 77
Hunter Mahan 75
Zach Johnson 74
Sergio Garcia 74

Earlier this week, Brendon Todd and Danny Shoy (president of the East Lake Foundation) toured the new Charles R. Drew Charter School Junior and Senior Academy.  During the visit, Todd pledged to donate $500 to the East Lake Foundation for each birdie he makes at this week’s TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola. Todd has posted four birdies through two rounds ($2,000).

Nine players are making their first-ever trip to the FedExCup finale this week: Chris Kirk (T2), Cameron Tringale (T5), Russell Henley (T10), Patrick Reed (T16), Martin Kaymer (T19), Jimmy Walker (T19), Hideki Matsuyama (T19), Morgan Hoffmann (23), Brendon Todd (24).

Moved into the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola following the BMW Championship:

FEC Rank  Player  TOUR Champ R1-2  Projected FEC Rank

No. 21   Morgan Hoffmann  70-73 (23) No. 24

No. 23   Ryan Palmer   69-67 (T5)  No. 12

Past FedExCup Champions Remaining in 2014 FedExCup Playoffs:

Player     Year Won  Current FEC/projected   TOUR Champ R1-R2

Jim Furyk  2010        No. 8/No. 7                     67-69 (T5)

Bill Haas    2011       No. 17/No. 17                 68-71 (T12)

There have been eight wins on the PGA TOUR this season by a player hailing from the University of Georgia; Chris Kirk (2), Bubba Watson (2), Russell Henley, Harris English, Brendon Todd and Brian Harman. In addition, Georgia Tech has produced two winners (Matt Kuchar and Chesson Hadley), while Augusta State produced two-time winner Patrick Reed (Reed also attended the University of Georgia prior to transferring to Augusta State).

There are three past champions of the TOUR Championship in the field this week: Bill Haas (2011; currently T12), Jim Furyk (2010; currently T5), Adam Scott (2006; currently T16).

Scoring Averages for the par-70 East Lake Golf Club:

               Front 9    Back 9  Total   Cumulative

Thursday  35.000    34.828   69.828   —

Friday       35.172    35.241   70.414  70.121

Bogey-free rounds:

R1 – Chris Kirk (66), Billy Horschel (66)

R2 – Kevin Na (66)

Author

Graham J Gordon, The Editor and Owner, GolfblogspotUK

The GolfblogspotUK website is owned and run by former Walker Cup player and European Tour card holder, Graham J Gordon, from Scotland, the Home of Golf. The owner is a golf fanatic who had to retire early from competitive tour play due to a back injury that required surgery. Graham wishes to share his knowledge and own experiences of the game with the GolfblogspotUK community and to receive your feedback on all aspects of the sport. Graham has been playing the game for over 20 years and received a great deal of pleasure from the sport. He has met several friends and visited many different places around the world, thanks to playing the great game of golf. Time to put a little back into the game to help others.

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