This week the PGA Tour makes its annual stop on the Monterrey peninsula for the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro Am. This week the players will stick a tee in the ground on three different courses; Pebble Beach Golf Links, Spyglass Hill Golf Course and Monterrey Peninsula Country Club Shore Course. You are hard pressed to find an area with more exceptional courses than here. Pebble Beach will play to a par of 72 at 6737 yards while the Shore Course will play to a par of 70 at 6875 yards. Spyglass will encompass 6938 yards and play to a par of 72. This week the players will traverse some of the perennially ranked hardest holes on tour such as 6, 8 and 16 on Spyglass Hill.
There is a long and storied history at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro Am. Consider the tournament course record of 62 has been shot by five players including the likes of David Duval (1997) and Phil Mickelson (2005). If you look at the list of past champions it is a distinguished group of Hall of Famers as well as current PGA Tour stars. Imagine having you name next to Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson, Payne Stewart, Tiger Woods, Davis Love II, Phil Mickelson (4-time winner) and Mark O’Meara (5-time winner). That is what the 150+ PGA Tour professionals are trying to do this week with the winner taking home $1,152,000 for first out of a total purse of $6,500,000.
Alongside the pros this week will be a laundry list of celebrities. As fans walk around the track this week they are just as likely to see Dustin Johnson or Phil Mickelson as they are to see Tony Romo, Aaron Rodgers, Bill Murray or Wayne Gretzky. Why so many celebrities at a Pro Am? Well it is charity of course. In 2012 alone, $9 million was generated for charity and over $100 million generated since 1937 through charities like the Monterrey Peninsula Foundation and Birdies for Charity (since 2008). Here is a sample of some of the celebrities that won money for charities during the 3M Celebrity Challenge. It’s always good to what the regular player get excited. Check it out.
YouTube Video Courtesy of jh12sports
The field this week has its share of heavy hitters. There is no doubt about that. Phil Mickelson arrives after an incredible win last week at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, Dustin Johnson is here and he already won the Tournament of Champions to start the season. Brandt Snedeker, leader of the Fed Ex Cup, is here to take a crack at the Pro Am along with Nick Watney, Hunter Mahan and others. Who do I like this week? Let’s break down my idea of the contenders at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro Am.
Up Next: The Contenders