Herman's March

One of the Valspar’s last commitments came from Jim Herman, who decided to play after making eight birdies in last Monday’s Seminole Pro-Member tournament. His hot play continued on Thursday at Innisbrook’s tough Copperhead Course, where Herman birdied nine of his first fourteen holes en route to a nine-under 62 and a two-shot lead.

Chasing Herman is the field’s highest-ranked player, Henrik Stenson, whose hot putter led him to a seven-under par 64 just a week after he was forced to WD from the WGC-Mexico because of a stomach bug. Stenson’s 64 was matched by Russell Henley, and rounding out the top five are James Hahn (-6) and rookie Seamus Power (-5). Full Scores.

Fog suspended the start of the Valspar by over an hour, keeping the first round from being completed. Round two will start at sunrise today. Here’s your coverage schedule for today and the rest of the weekend:

Golf Course Architecture 101: Routing, Variety and Naturalness

Continuing our dive into the basics of golf course architecture this week, we look at some of the more artistic aspects of the craft. An architect’s ability to route, create variety and make his work appear natural are a few traits that separate the good from the great. Learn about routing, variety and naturalness here, as well as last week’s part I in case you missed it.

A statement win

The Southern California Trojans triumphed at the prestigious Southern Highlands Collegiate, winning by ten shots over the fourth-ranking Oklahoma State. The seventh-ranked Trojans were led by star Freshman Cheng Jin and Sophomore Justin Suh, who finished in a tie for third place. If Jin’s name sounds familiar, it’s because the now Freshman is the same Cheng Jin who played in the 2016 Masters by way of his 2015 Asia Pacific Amateur win. On the individual side, Oklahoma’s Grant Hirschman used a final round 68 to come back from five shots behind and force a playoff with 36-hole leader Cal’s Collin Morikawa. Hirshman was able to win with a par on the first playoff hole and pick up the biggest win of his collegiate career. Full results.

Quick hooks

Round two of the Hero Indian Open is underway, follow along here.

The USGA is considering a scaled back version of the ball.Not really news,

Tiger is officially out for Bay Hill and had no timetable for a return.

Speaking of Tiger, Jamie Diaz writes about what if he is done.

Beef and Long John team up to do a Q & A.

Featured Tweet

The Trap Draw is back

After a brief hiatus, Big Randy and Tron are back on the blower and welcome PGA Tour rookie JT Poston. JT took a slightly different path to the PGA Tour than most, attending a small school and earning his PGA Tour card via the Web.com Tour despite entering the 2016 Web season without status. Listen on the website or iTunes.

Right on plane

 

Love golf? Sign up for our newsletter sent every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. It will keep you feeling like an insider in just a couple of minutes each week.