Shreveport product Sam Burns tees off today as the defending champion at the PGA Tour’s Charles Schwab Challenge in Fort Worth, but that’s not the only reason he’s feeling very comfortable despite last week’s missed cut at the PGA Championship.
“I think this event is extremely special to me just because I grew up going to this event as a kid and watching so many guys win here,” Burns said Wednesday. “I always thought it was such a cool golf course, and I always wanted to be a part of it. I just wanted to play in it.”
Burns cited fond memories of the 2011 win at Colonial Country Club by fellow Shreveporter David Toms, when Burns was 14 and watching outside the ropes. That wasn’t the only trip west on I-20 to this event, and last year, he joined Toms in the event’s winners’ circle with a closing round 65 and a playoff victory over his PGA pal, hometown hero Scottie Scheffler.
They are in a featured pairing, teeing off today at 8:04 on the 10th tee with Davis Riley along for the walk. Scheffler, who grew up in Highland Park in the heart of Dallas, is the tournament favorite.
Earlier this year, Burns picked up his most significant Tour win in March at the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play Championships, down I-35 in Austin.
Burns ranks fourth on tour in strokes gained putting, but his iron play has been erratic this season. The former LSU All-American, a Calvary Baptist graduate, ranks 165th in greens in regulation and 190th in proximity to the hole.
He shot a miserable second-round 84 in trying conditions last week at the PGA Championship, finishing 14-over par and getting the weekend off.