If you’re going to bet a favorite at this week’s PGA Tour stop, the RBC Classic, you might want to put your money back in your wallet or purse for a few minutes.
We’re about to tell you why there could be a first-time PGA Tour winner this week at the tournament which will be held at the Harbour Town Golf Links on Hilton Head Island, S.C.
Sure, last year Webb Simpson won the event for his seventh PGA Tour title. He won in dramatic fashion with a final-round seven-under-par 65 to edge Abraham Ancer (remember that name for a couple of minutes).
Odds To Win The RBC Classic From BetMGM
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RBC Classic Ramps Up The Intrigue
What makes this event an intriguing stop for Tour players is the fact it’s time to get back to normal.
The RBC comes right after the most prestigious event in golf: the Masters. The trip to Augusta raises the golf excitement meter to the highest levels possible for the players and the patrons (remember, it’s patrons and not fans at the Masters). All the big names are in the mix were taking aim at the crown.
Now this week at the RBC event, we move into an event perfect for the not-so-big names to get into the winner’s circle. And, in some cases, it’s for the first and only time.
Need proof? Here’s a quick quiz: What do C.T. Pan, Satoshi Kodaira and Wesley Bryan have in common? If you guessed they won the previous three RBC events before Simpson’s victory last year, take a bow. That means you’re spending as much time researching the golf world as we are.
But if you didn’t know they were previous RBC winners, you’re not alone.
These three came out of nowhere to win. In fact they hadn’t won on the PGA Tour before their victories and haven’t won on the PGA Tour since so it’s safe to assume this event is a stepping stone to success…no matter how brief or fleeting it may be.
Look For Another First-Time Winner
With that in mind, we’re on the search for a player to finally hoist a trophy on the Tour as well as cash in with a huge payday in both money and FedEx Cup points.
We think we’ve got the answer in Ancer. See what we did there?
Ancer, at +2800 at BetMGM, has been near the big boys’ table and grabbing a few scraps as they fall to the floor. He’s been a couple of errant shots or missed putts away from being right there on Sunday. In fact, since the start of 2021, he’s got six top-25 finishes including a T-5 at The American Express in January along with five other finishes of T-23 or better. He also wound up T-26 at last week’s Masters.
But, and here comes the better news, he was second here last year to Simpson. His final-round 65 was one shot worse than Simpson and left him one-shot back.
Since that time his ball-striking and confidence have both gotten better. He should be on everyone’s radar.
The Choices Are Limitless
There are other non-winners who could certainly put on that, um, interesting-looking plaid jacket that goes to the champion. No, it’s not green but players will still gladly put it on before hoisting the trophy.
And one player who comes to mind has also been flirting with breaking through. Check out Will Zalatoris at +2800.
How close has he been? Well, when you consider he played with Justin Rose in the last group at the Masters on Saturday and wound up with a solo second to Hideki Matsuyama when all was said and done, that’s pretty close.
Since the calendar turned to 2021 the 24-year-old who turned pro in 2018, has found himself more and more at home against the big boys. And we do mean big boys as he stands 6-foot-2 and weighs in at a slight 165 pounds. Yet he still pounds it out there (307.9 is his average drive, 18th on the Tour) and the rest of his game is getting more and more dialed in each week.
A Hot Player To Consider
While we’re looking hard at non-winners this week, we’re also going to throw in a guy who isn’t a household name but is getting closer to that status. Think about Brian Harman at +3300.
He finished strong in the recent WGC event and that got him into the Masters where he, gasp, also finished strong with a T-12 despite a final-round 74.
He hasn’t won since 2017 but he’s in top form right now. He’s got a recent T-9 here along with a couple of other top 25s so he’s a horse for the course.