PGA Championship Golf 2010: 10 Important Questions to Ponder For Day One
The final major of the year is upon us, and there is no doubt Tiger Woods will be the center of attention again in Wisconsin.
But there are a few other golfers out there besides Tiger Woods, and it's a good bet some familiar names will make themselves known while a few up-and-comers announce their presence to the world this weekend.
The Major tournaments always present their own unique set of challenges for the players to overcome, but the tournament also comes with a near endless set of questions.
Here are 10 questions to ponder as the PGA Championship kicks off.
Will Tiger Woods Even Make The Cut This Weekend?
Tiger Woods had his worst week of professional golf in his career last week at the Bridgestone Invitational.
If this were any other year, with the "old Tiger," this wouldn't even be a question. But Tiger seems vulnerable now, and there's no telling what kind of game he's going to have when he hits the course for real on Thursday.
He's talking about changing his swing again and seems to be interviewing new swing coaches to help make that change.
But the way Tiger has been playing lately makes the "Will Tiger make the cut?" question a completely legitimate one.
Will Lefty Overtake Tiger As The World's No. 1 Golfer?
Phil Mickelson doesn't have to win the PGA Championship to overtake Tiger Woods in the world rankings, but he can't fall apart like he did last week, either.
All Mickelson has to do is show up and play good golf, and the title should become his now that Lee Westwood is on the shelf with an injury.
With Mickelson's revelation of his psoriatic arthritis diagnosis and treatment, he should be considered a major threat to win the whole thing.
Can Louis Oosthuizen Make Another Run at a Title?
Louis Oosthuizen came out of nowhere to win the British Open a few weeks ago, so now the question is if he's the real thing or a one-and-done.
Oosthuizen has the tools and the talent to stay at the front of the pack, but so far only has one victory to his resume. Granted that victory was a dominant one at a major, but the PGA Tour is littered with one-and-done champs who never seem to find their winning stroke again.
How Will Thursday's Matchups Affect The Outcome Of The Tournament?
The tournament organizers certainly were paying attention to the fans when they set up Thursday's matchups.
The 1:35 p.m. tee time features Phil Mickelson, Louis Oosthuizen, and Graeme McDowell. So you have one of the best golfers on the tour matched up with this year's U.S. Open winner and British Open winner.
That will be the group with the biggest fan following other than Tiger.
It also will be interesting to see how these guys play off of each other and whether they all thrive off of the matchup, or if someone falters and fades away.
Is John Daly Even A Story Worth Following?
John Daly is an enigma. He has all the talent any amateur golfer would kill for, but he let his own personal demons nuke his career.
Daly still is one of the best drivers in the game, but he's showed the field nothing in recent times to even suggest he'll be here on Saturday.
Any story involving Daly making the cut this week should be a big one.
Can Bubba Watson Shock The World?
Bubba Watson has begun to make a name for himself on the PGA Tour this year with a victory at the Traveler's Championship in June as well as some good showing in several tournaments this year.
He got off to a great start at the Bridgestone last week before fading off, but this is a guy to keep your eye on as the tournament starts.
Can Tiger's Attempts To Fix His Swing On The Fly Pay Off?
No matter how hard you try, everything always seems to come back to Tiger Woods.
His mental game aside, Tiger has admitted one of his physical problems on the golf course lately is that he's fallen back into some bad habits and has begun drills Butch Harmon gave him to correct that problem.
Is it enough to put him back in contention for a title and the comeback story of the week?
What About The Big Names?
Vijay Singh, Mike Weir, Ernie Els, Padraig Harrington: Where will these guys be on Sunday?
All these names are proven winners on the tour, but no one can predict how they're going to play this week.
The big names on top of the leaderboard always attract the attention, and if Tiger isn't on top, one of these guys just might take his place.
What Kind Of Impact Will The Weather Have?
Thunderstorms are predicted for Friday and Saturday, but Sunday is forecast as Sunny and warm as of this writing.
As always, rain affects how the ball bounces, and sudden storms will change how the holes are playing from one group to the next.
Who Will Win?
The biggest question is the most important question: Who Will Win?
Mickelson seems to be the best guess going in, given his pedigree and the revelation that his poor play earlier this year was from an arthritic ailment that now is under control.
But there are no guarantees on the golf course, and Mickelson used to be famous for his flameouts on Sunday.
My prediction? The PGA Tour gets another new champion.