The final leg of the 2022 PGA Tour’s West Coast Swing is the Genesis Invitational. Tournament host Tiger Woods will not participate, but he’ll welcome and watch the tour’s elite players compete for a huge $12 million dollar purse.
This is the biggest purse in the history of the tournament and a significant jump from last year’s $9.3 million. The event runs from Feb. 17-20, and the winner will receive nearly $2.2 million.
All of the world’s top-10 ranked players will tee it up at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, CA. That includes world No. 1 Jon Rahm, last week’s Phoenix Open playoff winner, Scottie Scheffler, and runner-up Patrick Cantlay.
Scheffler went to Highland Park High School and lives in Dallas. He played college golf in Austin at the University of Texas and earned his first victory on the PGA Tour last week at +2700 odds to win.
Fellow Dallas resident, Texas Longhorn, and three-time major winner Jordan Spieth is also playing in the Genesis Invitational. The former No. 1 ranked player is currently No. 14 in the world, and he finished second in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am earlier this month.
Last year’s dramatic Genesis Invitational playoff winner and hometown champion, Max Homa, returns to defend his title.
Top players to watch and odds to win the Genesis Invitational
While Jon Rahm is the favorite to win, he’s got much stronger competition at the top this week.
Here are the golfers ranked top 10 in the world competing in the Genesis Invitational. Odds to win from DraftKings Sportsbook are for news and entertainment purposes, as sports betting is not yet legal in Texas.
- Jon Rahm (+800)
- Collin Morikawa (+1800)
- Patrick Cantlay (+1000)
- Viktor Hovland (+2500)
- Rory McIlroy (+2200)
- Dustin Johnson (+1600)
- Xander Schauffele (+2200)
- Justin Thomas (+1400)
- Scottie Scheffler (+2200)
- Hideki Matsuyama (+1800)
Rahm (33) and Cantlay (31) have the most consecutive rounds of par or better on the PGA Tour entering the Genesis Invitational. Tournament host Tiger Woods has the PGA Tour record of 52 consecutive rounds at par or better.
Other noteworthy names
The rest of the star-studded invitational field of 121 players includes these top-30 players:
- Cameron Smith (+2200)
- Jordan Spieth (+4000)
- Brooks Koepka (+3500)
- Sam Burns (+4000)
- Abraham Ancer (+8000)
- Tony Finau (+5000)
- Matt Fitzpatrick (+3500)
- Sungjae Im (+4000)
- Jason Kokrak (+7000)
- Patrick Reed (+9000)
- Kevin Na (+7500)
- Will Zalatoris (+2800)
Defending champion Max Homa (+5000) is ranked No. 34 in the world top-10 of the current FedExCup Standings.
Other golfers to watch who are playing well, moving up the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR), and among the top-20 in the FedExCup Standings include:
- Talor Gooch (+4000)
- Tom Hoge (+9000) – 2022 winner, AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
- Russell Henley (+4000)
- Seamus Power (+6000)
- Mackenzie Hughes (+9000)
- Cameron Tringale (+8000)
- Luke List (+8000) – 2022 winner, Farmers Insurance Open
Three Masters Champions who also won the Genesis Invitational add to the prestigious field. Dustin Johnson (2017), Bubba Watson (2014, 2016, 2018), and Adam Scott (2020) will tee it up. Johnson has finished top-10 in the event in seven of the last eight years.
The international contingent of players in the top-55 of the OWGR
- Paul Casey (+6000)
- Joaquin Niemann (+6000)
- Thomas Pieters (+7000)
- Marc Leishman (+5000)
- Corey Connors (+10000)
- Sergio Garcia (+6000)
- Si Woo Kim (+9000)
- Christiaan Bezuidenhout (+10000)
- Min Woo Lee (+18000)
Other international players to watch include former Texas Longhorns Jhonattan Vegas (+15000) and Dylan Frittelli (+30000).
Winning scores over the last four years have ranged from -9 to -12 (273 to 270). The 72-hole winning score prop is set at 270.5.
The median four-day score over the last five years has been just about 1-under par, and the cut line has been over par at the Genesis Invitational for every year over the last decade. A total of 37 players finished under par in the 2021 event.
Players with the most birdies or better averages at the Riviera
And with a minimum of 12 rounds over the last eight years include:
- Dustin Johnson, 4.34
- Justin Thomas, 4.29
- Adam Scott, 4.21
- Paul Casey, 4.21
- Bubba Watson, 4.16
Top finishers at the Genesis Invitational
If you look at top-10 finishers in the 2021 event you’ll see the strength and caliber of players that make this event so competitive and special.
- 1. Max Homa (win in playoff)
- 2. Tony Finau
- 3. Sam Burns
- 4. Cameron Smith
- Jon Rahm (T5)
- Viktor Hovland (T5)
- Matthew Fitzpatrick (T5)
- Dustin Johnson (T8)
Adam Scott won in 2020, and other top-5 finishers included Matt Kuchar, Max Homa, Rory McIlroy, Hideki Matsuyama, and Bryson DeChambeau, who is not playing in this year’s big event while rehabbing from hip and hand injuries.
Multiple top-10 finishers in the event over the last five years include:
- John Rahm
- Dustin Johnson
- Adam Scott
- Max Homa
- Tony Finau
- Justin Thomas
- Hideki Matsuyama
- Rory Mcllroy
- Cameron Smith
- Kevin Na
Other multiple top-15 finishers include Patrick Cantlay, Xander Schauffele, Viktor Hovland, Will Zalatoris, Talor Gooch, and James Hahn.
Riviera Country Club
The Par 71, 7,322 yard-layout is a classical tree-lined design with a myriad of interesting doglegs, undulating contours that create uneven lies, and tricky runoff areas around the greens.
Narrower Kikuyu grass fairways make it one of the toughest on Tour in driving accuracy and greens in regulation. It will play very firm and fast with warmer conditions recently in Los Angeles.
The green complexes have as much slope outside of Augusta National for The Masters. Short game strategy and success are more difficult, from holing short putts on bumpier Poa annua surfaces to getting up-and-down from just off the green.
Riviera has ranked as the toughest greens on Tour in very close range. Last season, only two major championship venues at the U.S. Open and PGA Championship yielded a lower Greens in Regulation percentage than Riviera (54.2%).
This tournament has ranked in the bottom two in average Driving Accuracy every year since 2015.
Golf at Riviera requires a player’s full focus while executing all shots in the bag. Stronger approach play and ball striking skills are essential for success. Strokes Gained: Around the Green is also a more impactful statistic than usual at Riviera.
You can follow tournament updates and highlights on the Genesis Invitational Twitter account.
Next week, the PGA Tour heads to Palm Beach Gardens for the start of the Florida Swing. The Honda Classic is played at PGA National Champion Course and the tournament begins Thursday, Feb. 24.