PGA Tour Betting Picks: RSM Classic

This week will mark the 10th annual playing of the RSM Classic. Historically, winners have come at an excellent price of around 90 to 1 odds on average.

We may see a winner coming from the back of the pack again as the field is rather light in regards to big names.

Webb Simpson, a former runner-up here in 2011, is a sizable favorite heading into the tournament. The North Carolina native is the only golfer at minus money for a top twenty finish at (-155).

Billy Horschel is even money for a top 20 followed by Matt Kuchar. Two former winners of the RSM Kevin Kisner and Charles Howell III are (+125) apiece.

Last weekend’s winner from Playa del Carmen, Brendan Todd, is in the field as well as Harris English who fell back to 5th at the Mayakoba after leading after 3 rounds.

Todd, who won two weeks ago as well, albeit under the radar at the Bermuda Championship, has an opportunity to be the first golfer to win three straight tournaments since the great Tiger Woods did it in 2006.

Sea Island is a golfer’s paradise. Several big names including Kuchar, Brian Harman, and Zach Johnson all have homes here.

So, technically, they will be sleeping in their own beds during the tournament but I wouldn’t put too much stock into that.

The tournament will be played on two courses, the Seaside Course and the Plantation Course.

Ultra fair weather for this time of year is expected over Thursday and Friday while the weekend is expected to bring the winds of change. Even with the blustery conditions forecasted for Saturday and Sunday, very low scores are projected.

Over the past four years, winners have average just shy of 20 under par for 72 holes.

We will, of course, be using golfers’ recent history on the island as well as current form but also need to take into consideration that this is the site of the SEC Golfing Championship each year.

Maybe we can find some young SEC alumni who faired exceptionally well here in their college years.

BetOnline.AG has provided the lines for us this week. Before we get into our picks, let’s recap what went down in Old Mexico this past weekend.

Mayakoba Classic Recap

  • We were on Russell Knox, Emiliano Grillo, and Brice Garnett
  • Each were top 20 bets<
  • Knox finished 3 shots off of the pay line and Grillo 4<
  • Womp womp
  • Garnett came through for us with a (+325) placing 11th<
  • Brice shot a final round 7 under par which was bested only by Matt Kuchar’s (-9)<

Not a great week for us but at least you have 25 bucks towards a Nintendo Switch for you…I mean your child’s Christmas.

It’s not even Thanksgiving yet, I know. Jingle bell, jingle bell…

Let’s get to the betting odds and predictions for the PGA Tour’s RSM Classic.

Brian Gay

The Texas native is a University of Florida Gator so we know he knocked out a few rounds as a youth here before turning pro way back in 1994.

Okay, I don’t feel so old now.

47 is pushing it but I think we are onto something with this guy.

The 4-time PGA Tour winner from 2008-2013 hasn’t had the most illustrious career but he is a Bermuda Grass specialist who loves these coastal courses.

He is coming off of a final round 6 under par last week in Mexico which was good enough to net him a 14th place finish.

One week earlier, he snagged a tie for 3rd in beautiful Bermuda.

A combined 30 strokes under par in two weeks is rather impressive and hard to ignore.

Please Note:

His strength is putting and boy does this tournament call for just that. 54 holes will be played on the Seaside Course and 18 on the Plantation. Both feature his favorite and many golfers’ least favorite putting surface of Bermuda Grass.

All of his wins were on Bermuda Grass courses.

The wind will likely make things difficult on Sunday but that’s where his extreme maturity will hopefully come into play.

Of all the players in the field this week, Brian has the hottest flat stick as he ranks #1 in putts per greens in regulation over the past two months.

In that same time frame, he is 7th in scrambling ability which should be another solid predictor for the windy weekend and the lake-lined Plantation Course.

At only around 7,000 yards each, these two courses aren’t a bomber’s paradise so if Brian can get on the green consistently and efficiently, he should have no problem finishing inside the top 20. He was even 7th back in early October in Vegas at the Shriners.

Ol’ Tex is in great nick. That’s golf slang for “The aging Texan is playing great lately.” On top of all of this, Brian has a new car! Gay hit a hole-in-one at last week’s Mayakoba Classic.

How about his tournament history on the Georgia island? 23 last year. Not bad. 3rd in 2017 and 4th back in ‘13.

The boxes are ticked and at 2.5 to 1 for a top twenty, I have to go with Gay here.

The Bet
Gay Top Twenty

Luke List

Yes, you read that correctly.

The 34-year-old Seattle, Washington-born golfer is at a price where we rarely see him, especially at a tournament with so few of the top 30 players in the world.

But, I thought you said we were going with southern boys this weekend?

Ah, but yes. Educated at Baylor and Vanderbilt, Luke resides in Augusta, Georgia and I’m sure he has made a few trips out to the golf haven of an island.

Why is he at (+450), though? It seems too good to be true.

He is coming off of a missed cut last week in Playa del Carmen but he has missed that cut 4 out of 5 times.

Margarita much, Luke? Tequila’s a heck of a… We won’t go there. I, for one, do not partake in the agave anymore.

He was 28th in Houston and 13th in Vegas in October, so unless he’s hurt, I suppose he’s not in terrible form.

I scoured the net for any injury news but he appears to be healthy.

Luke is a heavy hitter of the driver and while that won’t directly help him much this weekend, I hope he can club down and focus on precision over power.

Please Note:

List was 4th here last year. He took 2017 off and grabbed 13th in 2016. Luke missed the cut a year prior but that was his first appearance and he seems to have it dialed in on Saint Simons Island.

You will be hard-pressed to find a former top five finisher here who hasn’t missed at least one cut so everybody gets one mulligan in that regard if you will.

His putting this season has been nothing short of terrible, though. That worries me but it’s not like the greens have changed shape or surface significantly in the past few years, so I’ll give him some dough.

The Bet
List Top Twenty

Zach Johnson

How does that Toby Keith song go?

I think the same can be said of the 43-year-old Iowan Zach Johnson.

Sea Island is not only the site of Johnson’s last PGA Tour top ten performance but it is also his home.

The former Masters and Open Championship winner clearly isn’t the same golfer he was 10 years ago but just like Toby, he could be as good once as he ever was.

Great song, right?

Keith did get pretty cheesy there approaching Brad Paisley levels late in his career but this jam was one of his best, in my opinion.

Johnson has used this wraparound season to his advantage and gained some groove back.

23rd and 14th place finishes in two of his previous three appearances aren’t bad.

He struggles mightily on the bomber’s courses due to the lack of power at his age but he won’t have the same problem here.

Ranking top 20 in approach, let’s hope he can place the golf ball in the right spots on the green to give himself consistent opportunities for birdie.

Remember, he lives here so I’m confident he knows those spots quite well.

Many believe he has just been on the Tour to collect a check and I’m not saying that isn’t true. Even if it is, his exemption from his 2015 Open Championship win is running out this year so I would expect an increase in focus and determination from the old pro.

It’s not like his play has dropped off just recently. He hasn’t been the same golfer in years but still comes to play at home.

8th and 7th in the last two years at the RSM.

The Bet
Johnson Top Twenty

In Conclusion

This should be a fun week. I wish I was down there myself, honestly. It seems like a great place to visit and play as well.

Georgia is obviously known for golf, particularly the Masters in Augusta but Sea Island is home to a long list of the golfing elite.

These guys are friends too and rich as well so you know they have some 10,000 dollar-a-hole bets down here during their off weeks.

Many of last week’s best performers will be on betting slips again this week and I’m not opposed to Harris English or Brendan Todd on your card.

Nobody plays better here than Webb Simpson and Matt Kuchar is coming off of a final round 9 under par just a few days ago.

I like our picks, though.

Zach Johnson is one of those guys with a home course advantage.

Brian Gay ticks all the boxes and if Luke List can get hot with his putter then we might go 3/3.

Tune in, turn up, and bet hard ladies and gentlemen!

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Mike Pruitt / Author

Mike has been covering sports professionally since 2017 but on the amateur scene for 25 years since when he was 12. Before the internet changed the world, he would keep detailed statistical box scores of NFL and NBA contests, write recaps, and voluntarily commentate games and fights alone in his room. Mike's military experience, Bachelors Degree, and employment thereafter were always rooted in engineering, science, and teaching. Now he enjoys being able to express himself through writing about football, golf, and car racing among other sports but most of all fighting as his life has been rooted in mixed martial arts including competing and teaching for the past 15 years.