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Preview: FedEx St. Jude Classic

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Defending champion Dustin Johnson, Official Golf World No. 6 Brandt Snedeker and Phil Mickelson will headline the field at the FedEx St. Jude Classic this week at TPC Southwind in Memphis, Tenn.

TPC Southwind, a 7,239-yard par-70, will challenge the players with its combination of length and notoriously small greens (5,240 square feet on average). Its 2012 scoring average of 71.24 made it the toughest par-70 on the PGA Tour last year, aside from the majors. The players hit only 51.71 percent of the fairways and 57.49 percent of greens, the sixth lowest GIR percentage on Tour in 2012.

The course was modified in 2004 when its bentgrass greens were replaced with the more temperature-tolerant Bermuda grass, and length was added to several holes.

The champion this week will bear the burden of the “champions curse,” as the winner of a PGA Tour event the week before the U.S. Open has never gone onto capture the USGA’s most sacred title.

The field this week reflects the fear of assuming that curse. Only five of the top-30 golfers in the world will be in attendance (Snedeker, Johnsn, Mickelson, Peter Hanson and Ian Poulter).

Click here to see the inside the ropes photos we’ve taken this week in Memphis.

An unhealthy Johnson arrives as the defending champion, but will struggle to defend his crown. A lingering back injury led Johnson to miss the cut at the Memorial last week, and withdraw from the Players Championship after the first round. He’s played only three competitive rounds since he finished T13 at The Masters.

Mickelson, who was absent at The Memorial last week, added the FedEx St. Jude Classic to his schedule in preparation for next week’s major championship. He’s played the event twice, finishing T59 in 2009 and missed the cut in 2001.

Snedeker comes into this week as the No. 6-ranked golfer in the world, and holds the third-place position on the FedEx Cup Points list.

Johnson, winner of the Hyundai Tournament of Champions earlier in the year, Mickelson, Waste Management Pheonix Open champion, and Snedeker, who won the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, will join a number of other winners on the 2013 PGA Tour. The list includes Russell Henley (Sony Open in Hawaii), Brian Gay (Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation), John Merrick (Northern Trust Open), Scott Brown (Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com), D.A. Points (Shell Houston Open), Billy Horschel (Zurich Classic of New Orleans), Derek Ernst (Wells Fargo Championship), and Boo Weekley (Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial).

Chinese amateur phenom Guan Tianlang, 14, was given a sponsor’s exemption this week and will be making his fifth start in the United States. Other players receiving exemptions for the event include Shaun Micheel, David Duval, AJGA Rolex Player of the year Matthew NeSmith, U.S. Amateur champion Steven Fox and George Coetzee.

John Daly, who has missed the event just twice since his debut at the event in 1989, will be in the field this week for his 16th consecutive year.

Paul Goydos will make his 2013 PGA Tour after more than a 15-month hiatus due to surgeries on his left hand and wrist.

For what this event lacks in strength of field, it makes up for in strength of donation. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the sole beneficiary of the tournament since 1970, has reached a total of more than $26 million in donations. The institution works to find cures for children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases.

Televsion coverage of the event will begin at 2 p.m. EST on the Golf Channel on Thursday. You can visit www.stjudeclassic.com to receive further information about the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and how you can help save a child’s life.

Click here to see the inside the ropes photos we’ve taken this week in Memphis.

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He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

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Photos from the 2024 ISCO Championship

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GolfWRX is staying stateside, traveling to Kentucky for the ISCO Championship at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Kentucky.

WITBs and custom putters are here for the viewing, including some very cool looks into the bags of some players whose setups we haven’t had the pleasure of shooting so far in 2024.

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While you’re here, check out BK’s breakdown of the WITB of Davis Thompson, last week’s winner.

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Photos from the 2024 John Deere Classic

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GolfWRX is on site this week at the 2024 John Deere Classic. With the Scottish Open next week and The Open Championship two weeks away, those who have qualified will be looking to shore up their games in Silvis, Illinois, before heading to European shores.

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Be sure to check back throughout the week as we add more photos from TPC Deere Run!

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Photos from the 2024 Rocket Mortgage Classic

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GolfWRX was of course on-site this week for our hometown event, the Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club.

The photos have begun to flow in, and as always, we have WITBs, general galleries, and some cool special galleries — including a look at Jason Dufner’s 3D-printed putter. Be sure to check back throughout the week as we add more photos.

Check out links to all our photos below and see what GolfWRXers are saying in the official discussion thread.

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