Great golf from a loaded-up field at the Charles Schwab Challenge was to be expected on Thursday in the first PGA Tour round in 91 days, and great golf is what we got. We enter Round 2 with a leaderboard rife with stars and superstars, fascinating rounds from several of the top players in the world and enough Bryson DeChambeau memes to fill up Twitter for the rest of the season.
Colonial Country Club laid down from the very start as the scoring average in Round 1 dipped into the 60s and never let up through the end. Justin Rose took advantage early, and Harold Varner III did the same late. Both shot 63 and share the lead by one over Jhonattan Vegas and Abraham Ancer.
They were far from the only big names to show out after the long break, though, as Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Bryson DeChambeau all made appearances on the leaderboard at certain points throughout. Let’s take a look at the top of the leaderboard and recap what was a really fun first day back on the PGA Tour.
Round 1 leaderboard breakdown
T1. Justin Rose, Harovld Varner III (-7): Both hit it beautifully. Varner didn’t miss a green in regulation, and Rose’s swing — which he clearly grinded on during quarantine — looked absolutely silky. The numbers back it up, too, as Rose gained over three strokes from tee to green. A big day for both players, but Rose — a defending champion here — has the most staying power looking toward the rest of the week.
T3. Justin Thomas (-6): No surprises here. The only eyebrow-raiser is how he put the round together. Thomas led the field in strokes gained putting, which is great but possibly unsustainable. As the week goes on, I suspect his ball-striking will improve and maybe the most well-rounded player in the world will make a run at PGA Tour victory No. 13.
T3. Collin Morikawa (-6): I’m not saying coming on the First Cut podcast means you’re going to get a bump on the PGA Tour in your first start back, but I’m not not saying that either. Morikawa is one of the 25 best players in the world right now and maybe the best iron player alive (No. 1 on Thursday in strokes gained on approach shots). It’s time for everybody to be introduced.
T3. Jhonattan Vegas, Abraham Ancer (-6): Two nice players who have had solid careers and played terrific golf early on Thursday. Ancer continued his post-Presidents Cup mini-heater, which has included three top-15 finishes and this early number at Colonial. It would be awesome to see him get win No. 1 here.
T7. Bryson DeChambeau (-5): Oh baby, where do we begin? DeChambeau, who looks like he ate Brian Harman during quarantine, hit six drives of 320 yards or more on Thursday (and he said he was holding back!). We can (and will) giggle about how much weight he’s gained, but finishing first in strokes gained off the tee is indicative of his overall strategy. If you follow the PGA Tour closely, you know being the best driver (or at least among the best drivers) is the quickest route to…
Read More: 2020 Charles Schwab Challenge leaderboard breakdown, takeaways: Justin Rose, 2020-06-11 23:48:00