After a memorable week at the year’s second major in Louisville, the PGA Tour returns to Fort Worth for the Charles Schwab Challenge. Colonial Country Club remains the venue and has been an annual stop on the PGA Tour since 1946. ‘Hogan’s Alley’ has produced a ton of great history and champions over the years, but it’s important to note that Colonial has recently received a bit of a makeover.

As soon as the final putt dropped at the 2023 Charles Schwab Challenge, famed architect Gil Hanse’s team began work to restore Colonial to many of the elements of Perry Maxwell’s original design. While very little has been written about the actual course changes, Colonial is certainly in good hands, as Hanse has performed terrific restorations at some of the most iconic and classical golf courses in America, including Winged Foot, Merion, LACC, Oakmont and The Country Club at Brookline, amongst many others. Hanse’s intention is never to change the identity of a golf course but rather restore it to the architects original intent. For this reason, I would expect the nature of Colonial, which features tight driving corridors and firm, small greens to remain unchanged.

Charles Schwab Challenge odds 2024: Bet this approach king now before his odds drop

Headlining the field is Dallas resident Scottie Scheffler, and he will be challenged by former Charles Schwab champion Jordan Spieth as well as Collin Morikawa, Max Homa, Tony Finau and Brian Harman, among others. Let’s dive into the slate.

$10,000-plus range Play: Collin Morikawa, $11,000:

While I do expect Scottie Scheffler to “rebound” from his hectic week in Louisville, let’s use this opportunity to highlight another strong contender at Valhalla. While Collin Morikawa’s Sunday performance in contention certainly left a lot to be desired, Colonial is an even far better fit for his skill-set. The two-time major winner remains one of the best short- to middle-iron players in this field, and he is beginning to chip and putt with far more confidence. While he came up short at Valhalla, I expect Morikawa to threaten once again on another great test of approach play.

Fade: Max Homa, $10,400: 2153574225

Ross Kinnaird

I haven’t really been able to get a great read on Max Homa all season, and I’ve found myself fading him more often than not. Homa is coming off another ho-hum finish at the PGA Championship, where the ball-striking looked just okay. Colonial is certainly the type of golf course that Homa typically succeeds at, yet I do not believe he’s at the current level of other players in this range. If I’m not starting my lineups with Scheffler, Morikawa is a much-preferred choice.

$9,000 range Play: Brian Harman, $9,500:

Brian Harman is my official pick to win this week, and I love him as a DFS option as well. The reigning Champion Golfer of the Year is coming off a top-30 finish at the PGA Championship, where he gained nearly six strokes on approach, and his ability to spike with his irons should work beautifully at Colonial. In 11 appearances at the Maxwell design, Harman has recorded eight top-30 finishes and three top-10s. The three-time PGA Tour winner always seems to raise his baseline on short, positional golf courses with smaller greens, and it should not come as a surprise that his best finish of the season came at TPC Sawgrass, another golf course that heavily accentuates precise short- to middle-iron play.

Fade: Adam Scott, $9,200:

I fell for the Adam Scott trap last week, and I’m certainly not making that mistake again, particularly at this price point. Scott lost strokes in both ball-striking categories last week at the PGA Championship, and his approach play has looked off all season. Colonial is a golf course that heavily favors recent approach form and precise short iron play, and Scott currently ranks outside the top-40 in all approach and short-iron stat categories I am looking at this week.

$8,000 range Play: Chris Kirk, $8,400: 2149555449

Jared C. Tilton

Chris Kirk is a former winner at Colonial, and he has recorded seven top-25 finishes in 12 appearances at the Maxwell design. Since his victory in 2015, Kirk has continued to find his way onto the first page of the leaderboard at this track, and this should not come as a surprise given his skill-set. Already a winner this season at Kapalua, Kirk has been one of the best wedge players on tour on all season, a skill that will continue to pay dividends at Colonial.

Fade: Denny McCarthy, $8,700:

I didn’t understand the Denny McCarthy love last week, and I certainly have zero interest in buying back in at this price point. I am continually much lower than market on Denny McCarthy, and I believe him to be one of the most over-priced players on the slate this week. In five appearances at Colonial, McCarthy has made just two cuts with zero top-25 finishes. While McCarthy is always a threat to catch fire with his flat-stick, his recent ball-striking form just isn’t cutting it for me.

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Ross Kinnaird

Aaron Rai’s combination of elite driving accuracy and middle- to short-iron play is a perfect fit for Colonial, and it should not come as a surprise that he finished 12th in this event last year. Rai made the cut last week at the PGA Championship, gaining over two strokes on approach at a course that I did not believe was a great fit for his style of play. Colonial’s tight driving corridors and small greens will be far more up Rai’s alley.

Fade: Rickie Fowler, $7,600:

While Rickie Fowler has certainly had some success at Colonial over the years, he continues to be priced on past performance, and he is just not playing at a level right now that inspires any form of confidence. Fowler is coming off a 63rd-place finish at the PGA Championship where he lost over four strokes on approach, and his recent iron form is far too large of a question mark for me to trust him on such a demanding approach course.

Flier: Emiliano Grillo, $7,100: 2152969469

Keyur Khamar

I was pleasantly surprised to find the defending champion priced this low, as Emiliano Grillo has been one of the most consistent Colonial performers of the last decade. In eight appearances at the Maxwell design, Grillo has recorded five top-25 finishes, three top-10s and the victory last year. While coming off a missed cut at the PGA Championship, Grillo did catch the wrong side of the draw and still gained over a stroke on approach. Colonial will be far more Grillo’s speed from a course setup perspective, and I expect the Argentine to continue his strong play in Fort Worth.

$6,000 range Play: Greyson Sigg, $6,900:

Greyson Sigg is quietly one of the better short iron players in this field, and he is coming off a 13th-place finish at the Myrtle Beach Classic, where he gained 7.5 strokes on approach. Sigg’s iron play continues to be a major strength, and he raises his approach baseline even further on shorter golf courses with small greens. I expect Sigg’s skill-set to shine this week at Colonial.

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Andy Lack is a PGA Tour writer and podcaster from New York City who now resides in Los Angeles. He hosts Inside Golf, a twice weekly podcast focused on the PGA Tour, betting, daily fantasy, golf course architecture, and interviews, as part of the BlueWire podcast network. As well as contributing to Golf Digest, Andy is also a data analyst and writer for Run Pure Sports, where he covers PGA Tour betting and daily fantasy. He came to Golf Digest’s betting panel after previously writing for, the Score and GolfWRX. In his free time, Andy can likely be found on a golf course. Follow him on Twitter: @adplacksports

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