Image for Matt Cooper Matt Cooper - November 16, 2022

RSM Classic Predictions: Tony Finau Is the Clear Favorite After His Stunning Win Last Week

  • A 13th visit to the popular Sea Island Resort for the tournament
  • Unusual format with two courses used before the cut
  • Tony Finau is the clear favorite after his stunning win last week

The RSM Classic Odds

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Player

Odds 

Tony Finau

+800
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Brian Harman

+2000

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Jason Day

+2500

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Seamus Power

+2500

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Taymor Montgomery

+2800

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Tom Hoge

+2800

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Denny McCarthy

+3300

BET HERE 

Keith Mitchell

+3300

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Joel Dahmen

+4000

BET HERE 

Justin Rose

+4000

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The RSM Classic Picks

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RSM Classic Predictions Tony Finau

The RSM Classic Profile

The Sea Island Resort in Georgia has always been a popular spot for PGA Tour players with many of them residing there either permanently or owning a second home on the property.

Back in 2010, it hosted a tournament for the first time and it has never left.

It’s never expanded beyond being a Fall Series event, rarely attracting the biggest names in the sport, but that hasn’t stopped it from being a good watch for punters.

Why so? Well, this tends to be a week for specialists, when neat and tidy performers, unfazed by wind, tend to thrive and, what’s more, many of them win when a big price.

Course Report

The Seaside Course hosts three of the four laps and is a Harry Colt/CH Alison original from the late 1920s that was upgraded by Tom Fazio in the late 1990s.

It’s a touch over 7,000 yards with a par of 70 that features strong sea breezes and plenty of water hazards. It’s often referred to as being links-like but the Bermuda grass across the layout somewhat argues against that notion.

As might be guessed from the yardage, length is a little irrelevant with big-hitter Cameron Champ saying: “I'm just trying to find the fairways and the middle of the greens. I’ll take my 20-footers.”

Vaughn Taylor concurs, explaining that even without a driver from the tee, “you’ve got a lot of wedges in and short irons, so you immediately get aggressive.”

The Plantation Course is also around 7,000 yards but with a par of 72 - it is where players pile on the birdies.

The Favorites

It’s a first visit to the resort for Tony Finau since 2014 and he should be feeling confident because he finished that week 14th despite getting off to a slow start.

Moreover, he’s in great form at the moment, winning last week’s Houston Open by four shots.

It was the third win in seven starts and he is the clear favorite.

Lefty Brian Harman arrives fresh from finishing runner-up at El Camaleon in Mexico two weeks ago - a similar test to this week so a good pointer.

That said, although he has made eight cuts in 10 starts at the tournament he has only one top-five finish.

Aussie Jason Day is in a fine run of form, landing top 25s in each of his last four starts and they would have all been top 20s but for a very slow start in Mexico.

Like Harman, however, he has a somewhat underwhelming course record: a best of 12th and just one top 40 in three starts.

Irish Power

The profile of Irishman Seamus Power would suggest that he’d enjoy this week.

He’s landed top 20 finishes at Corales Puntacana, Harbour Town, Southwind, Port Royal, El Camaleon and Waialae - all of them breezy venues, (mostly) on the short side, with Bermuda greens.

But on his first four visits he struggled, missing the cut every time.

Last year, however, that changed and he finished fourth after heading into the final lap in second.

This year he arrives fresh off a victory at Port Royal and third at El Camaleon, both of them great pointers for this week.

He’s the pick of the top of the market as he seeks to climb the world rankings and earn a spot on Europe’s 2023 Ryder Cup team. 

Take him each way at +2500 with bet365. 

Kisner’s Sweet Spot

The compilers have decided that Kevin Kisner’s rather flat form is something of a threat to his chance this week.

He ended last season with finishes of 20th and 48th, then started this campaign with 72nd in the CJ Cup.

But consider his Sea Island form: 11 starts, five top-seven finishes, a win in 2015, and a playoff defeat in 2020.

Remember also that this is exactly the sort of test he adores, with wins at Colonial, Austin, and Sedgfield, plus extra hole defeats at Harbour Town and Sawgrass.

He also not only always references that he is well aware that modern golf courses, with their emphasis on length, don’t play into his short-hitting hands, but he has also been very adept at making hay when the conditions do suit him.

And finally, don’t be put off by his form.

His last two stroke play wins were preceded by failures to break the top 50 and final rounds of 75 and 79, while ahead of his near miss here two years ago he missed the cut after a 76.

Arriving here off 71 reads rather well in that context!

Take him each way with Caesars Sportsbook offering +5000 for six places.

Back Simpson’s Veteran Wiles

Rather than get involved with a traditional match bet to close, let’s instead create a rather different one between Webb Simpson’s current form and his course form.

It’s impossible to describe his recent results as anything other than poor because he hasn’t landed a top 40 in his last six starts.

But at Sea Island, he has been relentless.

He’s completed nine tournaments and finished top 40 in eight of them - and when he didn’t finish in the top 40 he was one shot shy of that mark!

What’s more six of those nine starts were top 12 so commonly he really enjoys the challenge.

Take that course form and back him at +105 with bet365 to land another top 40 (he’s as low as -115 elsewhere). 

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How to Watch The RSM Classic

  • Tournament: The RSM Classic
  • Location: Seaside and Plantation course, Sea Island Resort, St Simon’s Island, Georgia
  • Date: Thursday, November 17 - Sunday, November 20
  • How to watch: Thursday-Friday 12-3 p.m. ET. Saturday-Sunday 1-4 p.m. (Golf Channel). And all four days on Sky Sports.
Image for Matt Cooper

AUTHOR

Matt Cooper

68 Articles

Matt Cooper has been a sports journalist since 2009 with his work appearing at ESPN, Sky Sports, NBC, Sporting Life and the Planet Sport Network among many others, in addition to guest appearances on the BBC and CNN. Although a specialist in golf, who has traveled the world to cover the sport, Matt has also covered rugby, cricket, football and the Olympics. Email: [email protected]

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