This week the PGA TOUR returns to the PGA West Nicklaus course at La Quinta Country Club for the Humana Challenge (formerly known as the Bob Hope Classic). Last year, Jhonathan Vegas won the first of two titles in 2011 to spark some talk of him being the next superstar to take the PGA by storm. Didn't really work out that way towards the end of 2011, of course, but let's see if lightening can strike twice this week. Click the jump to see my fantasy golf picks for the Humana Challenge. A List
Starter: Matt Kuchar; Bench: Jhonny Vegas
Kuchar is a solid pick this week due to a solid track record in this tournament (including consecutive top-10's in this event over the past two years) so I won't be too surprised to find him on top of the leaderboard on Sunday. Vegas is the defending champion, and while he made it to the final round last week in Hawaii his early play in 2012 has been spotty at best. He may be a bit of a stretch this week, but then again nobody even knew who this kid was this time last year.
Starters: Bill Haas, Anthony Kim; Bench: Harrison Frazar, Bryce Molder
Hass is going to have a strong week in La Quinta, assuming his track record in this event holds up this week. He won this event in 2010 and finished runner-up last season to Vegas. There may not be a more confident pick this week, so he's in my starting line-up. Anthony Kim looks to have a break-out season (again) in 2012 thanks to improved health and longer hair. Harrison Frazar seems to be playing the best golf of his life starting at the end of 2011, and I would not be surprised to seem him contend in a major this year if he keeps this pace up. Molder is a bit of a sleeper pick for me this week, and I will admit it was simply based on my love of this guy's swing and attitude.
Starter: Carl Pettersson; Bench: Bud Cauley
Pettersson played well last week in Hawaii, giving eventual winner Johnson Wagner and the rest of the field a little bit of a scare towards the weekend. He seems to play his best golf early in the year, so I'll ride this hot-hand for another tournament this week. Bud Cauley is going to be a superstar, that much is already evident. His first career PGA TOUR start last week earned him a top-30 finish in Hawaii despite showing some nerves on the weekend. Due to the later cut-line (Saturday) this week, the youngster might have more time to relax on the course in preparation for a Sunday finish.