2010 U.S Open Golf Odds: The Top 10 Contenders

Jeffrey Fann@TalkinACCSportsAnalyst IJune 14, 2010

PEBBLE BEACH, CA - JUNE 14:  The seventh green is seen during a practice round prior to the start of the 110th U.S. Open at Pebble Beach Golf Links on June 14, 2010 in Pebble Beach, California.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

This has to be one of the biggest June's in sports in years. You have the World Cup, the NBA Finals, the recent completed Stanley Cup finals, and conference expansion news.

Now you have the golf's second major, the U.S Open coming up this week.

I've been looking forward to this one since the Masters ended.

Phil Mickelson Β  is still trying to take over the World No. 1 ranking from Tiger Woods.

Woods is trying to hang onto his No. 1 ranking as he returns to the location of his greatest golf triumph, Pebble Beach where beat the field by astonishing 15 strokes in the 2000 U.S Open.

Who are the top 10 contenders this year?

In my 2010 Master's Preview , four of my top six contenders finished in the Top Four. Let's see if I can do it again.

1) Phil Mickelson

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He's a five-time U.S. Open runner-up, and a four-time major championship winner. He won the Master's earlier this season. He has three top five finishes in his last five starts.

Mickelson would love to win at Pebble Beach. If he drives the ball anywhere close to decent he should be right there come Sunday.

Odds of Winning: 6 to 1

2) Lee Westwood

Lee Westwood is the world's best player without a major. He finished second and tied for third twice in his last three majors. Westwood has the physical tools required to win majors. His issue is between the ears, and that usually shows up in the one question mark in his game, putting and chipping.

He won this week at the St. Jude Classic and that should give him plenty of confidence heading to Pebble Beach.

Odds of Winning: 8 to 1

3) Jim Furyk

Furyk's career is starting look like Tom Kite's or Fred Couple's. Consistently one of the best players on tour, he has been unable to break the one major win mark. He's one of the more accurate drivers on tour and has two wins on this season.

Pebble Beach is long, but not the monster some U.S Open courses have been recently. He won the U.S Open in 2003.

Odds of Winning: 10 to 1

4) Ernie Els

Els in the leading money winner on tour in 2010. He's already won twice this season, and is a two-time U.S. Open winner. He also finished second to Tiger Woods in the 2000 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

Els has missed the cut in two of his last three starts and that has to be a concern, but we know he's capable of winning this week. Else just needs to believe he can win.

Odds of Winning: 12 to 1

5) Dustin Johnson

Do you know why I like Johnson? It's because he won twice at Pebble Beach. He won there earlier this year and the AT&T Pebble Beach event last year.

Even if the course setup will be much tougher for the U.S Open, he obviously likes the surroundings.

He's long off the tee ranking second on tour, but not that accurate. Angel Cabrera proved in his 2007 U.S. Open win that you don't necessarily have to hit the fairway every hole, though it sure does help.

Odds of Winning: 15 to 1

6) Luke Donald Β 

England had four players ranked in top 10 of the world and Luke Donald is one of them.

Donald has four top 10 finishes this season and a solid T-16 finish at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am earlier this year. Donald is short hitter, but so was Corey Pavin the 1995 U.S Open winner.

If the wind kicks up Donald won't contend, but if the weather is fairly calm he can be a factor.

Odds of Winning: 20 to 1

7) Rory McIlory

The talented young Irish player got his first PGA tour at the Quail Hollow Championship earlier this year in Charlotte, NC. He also had a top 10 finish at the Memorial. Those are two quality courses and fields that McIlory had good results in.

Could his first major win be far behind?

I think the U.S Open is the toughest major for a young player to contend in because of the patience you need to play with, but McIlory finished 10th last year.

Odds of Winning: 25 to 1

8) Tiger Woods

Woods's game is a mess, but if there is any player on tour that can pull together for one week it's him. In the 2000 U.S Open, Woods put on the greatest display of golf I've ever seen.

Maybe being back at Pebble Beach can remind of how he played golf ten years when destroyed the field. His chances of winning are slim, but he always has a chance.

Odds of Winning: 30 to 1

9) Hunter Mahan

Mahan, 28, is another young player who may be ready to break through for a major win. He finished T6 at last year's U.S. Open and has three top 10 finishes in his last five Majors.

He ranks in top 50 in both driving distance and accuracy. He has a win this year at the Phoenix Open.

All About Sports odds of Winning: 35 to 1

10) K.J Choi

I always reserve the 10th spot for a darkhorse contender. I feel like K.J. Choi can be that guy. Choi is a world class player with a steady temperament.

He ranks in the top 40 of every PGA Statistic except driving distance and putting. He's third on tour in scoring average with a 69.8 strokes per round.

He's a seven-time PGA tour winner and it wouldn't surprise if he's somewhere on the leaderboard Sunday.

Odds of Winning: 40 to 1

This article is also featured at All About Sports

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