The PGA Tour will swing through California’s Lake Tahoe area this weekend for the Barracuda Championship in a tournament that would be unique even outside these pandemic-altered times.
The event will be broadcast from Tahoe Mountain Club’s Old Greenwood Golf Course July 30 to Aug. 2 on The Golf Channel. This will be the only way to watch this tournament, since the ongoing coronavirus pandemic is preventing the presence of on-site spectators.
The action will begin at 7 p.m. Eastern time Thursday and Friday and 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Pro golf’s top talent won’t be at the Barracuda, however, as players like Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas have already committed to playing at the 2020 World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational this weekend.
The Barracuda, which was pushed back a month due to the aforementioned pandemic, comes with a twist. It’s the only PGA Tour event that uses the so-called “Modified Stableford” scoring format. In keeping with how I usually golf, players are aiming to score the most points, not the fewest.
Players who land an eagle will score five points, a birdie will net two points and par will be zero points. Players on the wrong side of par will lose points.
Tournament officials say this scoring format can encourage aggressive play. So if you need a little more action than golf normally provides, this might be the tournament for you.
“The strategy in Modified Stableford formats can, in most instances, be summed up in three words: Go for it,” an explanation on the tournament website states.
Collin Morikawa won last year’s Barracuda Championship. Tournament officials said 132 PGA Tour members will compete for a share of the $3.5 million purse this year.
The Barracuda (I still haven’t come up with a good reference to the Heart song) will come on the heels of the 3M Open in the Twin Cities. Heading into that tournament, Thomas was leading the PGA Tour's points-based, season-long competition known as the FedExCup.
The winner of the Barracuda will come away 300 points richer in the FedExCup standings.
How to watch the PGA Tour Barracuda Championship
The Golf Channel can be accessed with a cable TV package or by using several streaming services that carry it. That includes Hulu with Live TV or FuboTV, which both cost $55 a month, or YouTube TV at $65 a month. Sling offers the Golf Channel with its Blue package with the sports extra add-on for a total of $40 a month.
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