Watson looks to keep adding to trophy case at Greenbrier

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS — When he claimed the Travelers Championship 10 days ago, Bubba Watson clinched his winningest year yet on the PGA Tour.
Three titles versus only two missed cuts in 15 starts has the Greenbrier’s adopted favorite surging into this week’s event.
“My expectation is always trying to win,” he said Tuesday. “The goal was always to get that next trophy.
“Hopefully I’ll make some putts like I did at Travelers. That’s the key to anybody’s game. We can all hit the ball, so it’s just making putts at the right time.”
Watson built a home at the Greenbrier four years ago and quickly emerged as a de facto spokesman for the resort.
“I was looking for a second home to just have a vacation site. I was looking in Montana, Colorado, all these different places, kind of northern,” he said. “Webb Simpson told me about this place, and Scott Stallings, after he won (in 2011) told me how amazing this place was.”
Watson’s first three times playing the Greenbrier Classic resulted in finishes of 30th, 16th and 13th before falling off to 70th in 2017.
“You try to block it all out and just play golf,” he said. “But as people, we’re always putting pressure on ourselves. So yeah, it would be a huge accomplishment to win here in front of my home crowd. What a dream that would be.”
At age 39, Watson has finished three seasons ranked among the top 10 in the world and he current sits 12th. He’s third in the FedEx Cup standings.

Old White TPC suits Simpson
After four top-15 finishes in seven Greenbrier Classic appearances, Webb Simpson senses it’s only a matter of time before he wins one.
“I feel very confident here,” Simpson said before Tuesday’s practice round. “This is one of those courses where I don’t I feel likeI don’t have do anything extraordinary to have a good, solid week and have a chance on Sunday.”
Simpson finished third here in 2014 at 10-under and tied for seventh in 2012 at 11-under par. Currently ranked 21st in the world and 10th in the FedEx Cup, he won The Players Championship in May and has earnings surpassing $3.7 million this year.
More success could be forthcoming this week at the Greenbrier, which has become a favorite for Simpson and caddy Paul Tesori.
“Paul and I put together a list of about seven courses that, no matter what, we should never miss,” he said. “And this is one of those.”
The par-70 course plays 7,286 yards and has toughened considerably since the inaugural Greenbrier in 2010 saw golfers combine for 325 rounds below par, including Stuart Appleby’s 59. Last year’s field featured 213 rounds below par.
“This one’s not so much one of those bomber golf courses, so I love having options off the tee,” Simpson said. “You get to a hole, there is not necessarily a right club or a wrong club.”

Greenberg thinks Carter will stick
ESPN college basketball analyst Seth Greenberg, visiting for the Greenbrier pro-am, projects Jevon Carter will last in the NBA “for a while because of his toughness.”
Carter recently made his summer league debut after being picked 32nd overall by the Memphis Grizzlies.
“He’s going to be a second-unit guy, but you know who you’re getting. He knows exactly who he is and how he wins, so he’s not going to try to get outside of himself,” Greenberg told MetroNews “Talkline” on Tuesday.
While WVU’s career steals leader probably won’t ever command “$25 million a year,” Greenberg predicted Carter’s ball pressure will be disruptive to halfcourt offenses.
“Let’s face it, in the NBA the first six or seven guys get paid, and everyone else is on minimum contracts, and you need to fill out your roster. Why wouldn’t you fill it out with Jevon Carter?” he said.