USPGA Championship Outsiders Worth Backing 2019

Nick Bonfield picks out five USPGA Championship outsiders worth backing ahead of the second Major of the year at Bethpage Black

USPGA Championship outsiders worth backing
Bubba Watson looks well suited to Bethpage Black
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Nick Bonfield picks out five USPGA Championship outsiders worth backing ahead of the second Major of the year at Bethpage Black

USPGA Championship Outsiders Worth Backing

On Thursday, the USPGA Championship heads to Bethpage Black for the first time as it slots into an unfamiliar position as the second major of the year.

The course, which hosted the 2016 and 2012 Barclays and the 2009 US Open, won by Patrick Reed, Nick Watney and Lucas Glover respectively, is renowned as being one of the toughest in the country.

The par-70 layout plays over 7,500 yards from the tips and the golf course has been pelted by rain over the last couple of days, meaning it will play long and present a significant challenge.

With seven par 4s over the 460-yard mark and three par 3s over 210 yards, it’s no wonder the longer hitters are being favoured by the bookmakers. Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy – who lead the betting – are three of the most powerful hitters in the game.

The good news is there is excellent value further down the betting, a product of the best players in the world being in form and seemingly good fits for Bethpage Black.

Below, I’ve picked out five USPGA Championship outsiders who I feel represent good value.

Expand USPGA Championship Golf Betting Tips 2019 – Final Round

USPGA Championship golf betting tips

USPGA Championship Golf Betting Tips 2019 – Final Round

Who is going to win at Bethpage Black?

Expand USPGA Championship Weather Forecast 2019

USPGA Championship weather forecast

USPGA Championship Weather Forecast 2019

See what conditions the players will face this…

Expand USPGA Championship Tee Times 2019 – Round 4

USPGA Championship Tee Times 2019

USPGA Championship Tee Times 2019 – Round 4

Who is teeing off when?

Adam Scott - 55/1

I’ve been impressed when I’ve watched Adam Scott this season. He looked in great form at the Farmers Insurance Open – where his putting was as good as I’d seen it – and played well at both TPC Sawgrass and Augusta National. He remains one of the best ball-strikers in the game and he pushed Kopeka all the way lat last year’s USPGA en route to a third-place finish. What’s particularly encouraging is the fact he ranks 15th in Strokes Gained: Putting on the PGA Tour. That, combined with an excellent long game, could mean he’s in the hunt come Sunday.

Bubba Watson - 60/1

Bubba Watson isn’t having a brilliant season, but he’s been pretty steady of late. He hasn’t missed a cut since the Sony Open in January and he finished 12th in his last start at The Masters, two events after a season-best tie for 4th at the Valspar Championship. What makes Watson so appealing at this price is the fact he ranks second in the PGA Tour’s Strokes Gained: Off-the-tee category. He’s missed the last two PGA Championship cuts, but he came close to winning in 2010 when he lost to Martin Kaymer in a  play-off.

Related: Getting to know Bubba Watson

Jason Kokrak - 125/1

Jason Kokrak isn’t a household name, but he’s been in good form this season and I have a feeling a big-hitting, lower-profile American will feature on the final leaderboard. Kokrak is yet to record a victory on the PGA Tour, but he’s had four top-tens since March, including a second at the Valspar Championship. What’s encouraging is that he’s played well on tough courses this season, and they don’t come much tougher than Bethpage Black. His chipping and putting is a slight concern, but he ranks 10th on the PGA Tour in Strokes Gained: Approach the Green and 17th in Strokes Gained: Total.

Thomas Pieters – 175/1

I’m a big fan of Thomas Pieters and I’m convinced he’ll win a Major before the end of his career. His form hasn’t been particularly encouraging so far this season, but he did finish 6th at the Oman Open four events ago and played some good golf en route to a top 25 last week at the Byron Nelson. Pieters averages more than 310 yards off the tee this season and ranks 27th on the European Tour in Strokes Gained: Off-the-tee. He’s hitting more than 70 per cent of greens in regulation this year and he’s a quality putter when he gets going. At this price, I’m definitely taking a punt, especially given he finished 6th at the USPGA Championship last year. 

Luke List – 250/1

I have to admit, this selection is informed more by inkling than anything else. He’s not in great form and he hasn’t made a cut at the PGA Championship, but the course should suit him and he’s played challenging layouts well in the past. List ranks 10th on the PGA Tour in Stokes Gained: Off-the-tee and 3rd in Driving Distance, and if there’s ever a course where length is important, it’s Bethpage Black. Putting is a concern, but his tee-to-green stats are very good indeed.

Nick Bonfield
Content Editor

Nick Bonfield joined Golf Monthly in 2012 after graduating from Exeter University and earning an NCTJ-accredited journalism diploma from News Associates in Wimbledon. He is responsible for managing production of the magazine, sub-editing, commissioning and feature writing. Most of his online work is opinion-based and typically centres around the Majors and significant events in the global golfing calendar. Nick has been an avid golf fan since the age of ten and became obsessed with the professional game after watching Mike Weir and Shaun Micheel win The Masters and PGA Championship respectively in 2003. In his time with Golf Monthly, he's interviewed the likes of Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose, Jose Maria Olazabal, Henrik Stenson, Padraig Harrington, Lee Westwood and Billy Horschel and has ghost-written columns for Westwood, Wayne Riley, Matthew Southgate, Chris Wood and Eddie Pepperell. Nick is a 12-handicap golfer and his favourite courses include Old Head, Sunningdale New, Penha Longha, Valderrama and Bearwood Lakes. If you have a feature pitch for Nick, please email with 'Pitch' in the subject line. Nick is currently playing: Driver: TaylorMade M1 Fairway wood: TaylorMade RBZ Stage 2 Hybrid: Ping Crossover Irons (4-9): Nike Vapor Speed Wedges: Cleveland CBX Full Face, 56˚, Titleist Vokey SM4, 60˚ Putter: testing in progress! Ball: TaylorMade TP5x