2015 FedEx St. Jude Classic pre-tournament notes
Dates: June 8-14, 2015
Where: TPC Southwind
City, State: Memphis, Tenn.
Par/Yards: 35-35–70/7,239 yards
2014 champion: Ben Crane
Purse: $6,000,000 ($1,080,000 to the winner)
FedExCup: 500 points to the winner
Format: 72-hole stroke play
A look at the 2014 FedEx St. Jude Classic
- Having maintained his position at the top of the leaderboard over 54 holes, Ben Crane entered the final round with a three-shot lead over Troy Merritt
- It was just the second time in his career Crane had held a lead heading into the final round.
- With a final-round 73, Crane held on for the victory, becoming the eighth player in tournament history to win after holding at least a share of the lead each day.
- Crane’s final round yielded no birdies, marking the first time since Justin Leonard at the 2005 FedEx St. Jude Classic a player won without a birdie in the final round.
More on Ben Crane
- The 2014 FedEx St. Jude Classic was Crane’s 17th start of the 2013-14 PGA TOUR Season and his best finish since a T9 at the Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation.
- The win was Crane’s fifth career PGA TOUR title, having previously won the 2003 BellSouth Classic, 2005 U.S. Bank Championship in Milwaukee, 2010 Farmers Insurance Open and 2011 McGladrey Classic.
- He also won the CIMB Classic in 2010.
- Crane finished the season No. 63 in the FedExCup standings.
- He missed the cut at The Barclays, and finished T29 and T23 at the Deutsche Bank Championship and BMW Championship, respectively.
- Crane has made 15 starts in the 2014-15 season and is in search of his first top-25 finish.
A look at the field
- Thirteen of the top 50 in the FedExCup standings, led by Dustin Johnson (7).
- Ten of the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking highlighted by Dustin Johnson (7), Phil Mickelson (19), Billy Horschel (20), Brooks Koepka (23) and Ryan Palmer (26)
- Six winners of PGA TOUR events in 2014-15:
- Brooks Koepka (Waste Management Phoenix Open)
- Padraig Harrington (The Honda Classic)
- Dustin Johnson (World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship)
- Alex Cejka (Puerto Rico Open)
- Matt Every (Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by MasterCard)
- Steven Bowditch (AT&T Byron Nelson).
- Fifteen major winners including
- U.S. Open champions Webb Simpson (2012)
- Graeme McDowell (2010)
- Lucas Glover (2009)
- Retief Goosen (2004, 2001).
- Six former FedEx St. Jude Classic champions, including
- Ben Crane (2014)
- Harris English (2013)
- Dustin Johnson (2012)
- Harrison Frazar (2011)
- Justin Leonard (2008, 2005)
- David Toms (2003-04).
- 42-time PGA TOUR winner Phil Mickelson will return to Memphis for his fifth start.
- Mickelson in Memphis: T11/2014, T2/2013, T59/2009, MC/2001.
- Mickelson has two top 10s this season: T2/Masters and T4/Wells Fargo Championship.
- Dustin Johnson, No. 7 in the FedExCup standings, has played in Memphis each year since his 2012 victory at TPC Southwind, finishing T10 and T24 in 2013 and 2014, respectively.
- He has made 12 starts this season, collecting his ninth-career victory at the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship, and five additional top 10s.
- Reigning FedExCup champion Billy Horschel returns to the site of his first professional start which came at the 2009 FedEx St. Jude Classic.
- He missed the cut that year, but recorded top 10s in his last two starts in Memphis: T6/2014, T10/2013.
- Already a winner this season, Brooks Koepka (Waste Management Phoenix Open) will make his second start at TPC Southwind after finishing T19 in 2014.
- Harris English will look to repeat his 2013 victory at the FedEx St. Jude Classic after missing the cut in 2014.
- English has two top-five finishes this season including a T3 showing at the Sony Open in Hawaii and a runner-up finish after losing in a playoff at the Farmers Insurance Open.
- Davis Love III will make his 13th start at the FedEx St. Jude Classic.
- He only has three missed cuts in Memphis and has recorded three top 10s, highlighted by a T3 finish in 2012.
- Two-time FedEx St. Jude Classic champion David Toms will make his 24th start and 19th consecutive start.
- Since 1989, he has played the event every year except for 1990-91 and 1995.
- Austin Cook, who finished T13 in 2014 after Monday Qualifying, will make his fourth career PGA TOUR start.
- Cook Monday Qualified at the 2015 Shell Houston Open, and after round two, was tied with Phil Mickelson in second, only one shot off the lead.
- He finished T11.
- The AJGA Rolex Junior Player of the Year once again received a sponsor’s exemption into the field.
- No. 1-ranked junior and LSU-commit Sam Burns will make his second PGA TOUR start.
- A week after being named the NCAA Men’s Golf Individual Champion, Bryson Dechambeau will make his PGA TOUR debut at TPC Southwind.
- A physics major at SMU, the junior became the first individual champion in school history.
Fedex St. Jude and the U.S. Open
- FThis year marks the ninth consecutive playing of the event the week before the U.S. Open.
- No player has ever won a PGA TOUR event and then gone on to win the U.S. Open the following week.
- The best U.S. Open finish by the prior week’s champion is a T16 by Lee Westwood in 2010.
- Since moving to TPC Southwind in 1989, the FedEx St. Jude Classic was also played the week before the U.S. Open in 2001 (Bob Estes/T30 U.S. Open), 1999 (Ted Tryba/T66 U.S. Open) and 1992 (Jay Haas/T23 U.S. Open).
- Despite last year’s win in Memphis, Ben Crane did not qualify to play in the following week’s U.S. Open.
- Since 1934, just 11 players have won the week before winning a major championship.
- 2014 Rory McIlroy won WGC-Bridgestone Invitational followed by PGA Championship
- 2007 Tiger Woods won WGC-Bridgestone Invitational followed by PGA Championship
- 2006 Phil Mickelson won BellSouth Classic followed by Masters
- 1988 Sandy Lyle won Greater Greensboro Open followed by the Masters
- 1971 Lee Trevino won the Canadian Open followed by the British Open
- 1959 Art Wall won the Azalea Open followed by the Masters
- 1949 *Sam Snead won the Greater Greensboro Open followed by the Masters
- 1946 *Ben Hogan won the Winnipeg Open followed by the PGA
- 1945 *Byron Nelson won the Chicago Victory Open followed by the PGA
- 1939 Ralph Guldahl won the Greater Greensboro Open followed by the Masters
- 1939 *Henry Picard won the Scranton Open followed by the PGA
- *No event scheduled the week after first win. Major was next event contested.
FedEx St. Jude Classic Miscellaneous Notes
- In 2014, Ben Crane became the eighth player in event history to claim his victory after holding at least a share of every round’s lead (Dave Hill/1966, Ray Floyd/1982, John Cook/1996, Bob Estes/2001, Justin Leonard/2005, Brian Gay/2009 and Lee Westwood/2010).
- In its 57-year history, seven players have claimed the FedEx St. Jude Classic as their first PGA TOUR victory.
- All seven wins have taken place in the last two decades of the event, with the first being Dicky Pride in 1994 and most recently Harris English in 2013.
- Since the event’s inception in 1958, only three players have been able to successfully defend their title, Dave Hill (1969-70), Lee Trevino (1971-72) and David Toms (2003-04).
- Toms is the only player to successfully defend since the event moved to TPC Southwind in 1989.
- Since the event’s inception, only four international players (five victories) have won the FedEx St. Jude Classic:
- Gary Player (1974)
- Nick Price (1993, 1998)
- Greg Norman (1997)
- Lee Westwood (2010).
- In 2013, Harris English was the seventh come-from-behind winner at the FedEx St. Jude Classic in the last eight years (Brian Gay in 2009 the exception).
- At St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, families never receive a bill for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.
- Located 23 miles from the hospital, the FedEx St. Jude Classic at TPC Southwind is committed to helping the hospital achieve that mission.
- St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital has been the sole charity of the tournament since 1970, and has received more than $26 million as a direct result of its affiliation with the tournament and PGA TOUR.
- Headquartered in Memphis, FedEx is a proud partner of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and supports the fundraising and awareness efforts through onsite initiatives, including:
- Purple Eagle Plane Dedication – For the fourth consecutive year, a Cessna Caravan aircraft is dedicated in honor of a St. Jude patient who is a child of a FedEx employee.
- This year, nine-year-old Tyler West, who has been treated by the hospital for acute lymphoblastic leukemia, will be the plane honoree.
- FedEx will announce a substantial donation to St. Jude in the name of 2014 FedExCup champion Billy Horschel on Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. on the driving range.
- Player involvement
- The FedEx St. Jude Classic field will continue its involvement with the hospital, and hospital-benefiting activities.
- Each year, players participate in the St. Jude Golf-a-Round, located in the Danny Thomas ALSAC Pavilion at the hospital, where they can interact with patients on the putting green. Dustin Johnson and Ben Crane, both who have participated in previous years, are scheduled to attend the 2015 event on Tuesday, June 9, from 1-3 p.m.
- Guests will have the opportunity to mingle with PGA TOUR players at the St. Jude Presents John Rich and Friends concert at the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts on Tuesday, June 9, while bidding on live auction items benefitting the lifesaving work of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. In years past, players like Dustin Johnson – who purchased a piece of art for $16,000 – engage in bidding wars, with 100 percent of proceeds going to the hospital.
SOURCE: PGA TOUR