JDC has Major Feel

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About 40 players from the U.S. Open, plus 20 entered in the British Open, have committed to play in the 2012 John Deere Classic.

Top U.S. Open finishers who are also headed to the Quad Cities event are Michael Thompson (T-2), Kevin Chappell (T-10), 2006 John Deere Classic champion John Senden (T-10), former Players Champion K.J. Choi (T-15), three-time defending John Deere Classic champion Steve Stricker (T-15), Sweden’s Fredrik Jacobson (T-15), Blake Adams (T-21), and the U.S. Open’s low amateur Jordan Spieth, 18, a leading member of the University of Texas’ 2012 NCAA championship team (T-21).

Rookie John Peterson, who make the only hole-in-one at the 2012 U.S. Open, is the next player in line to receive a sponsor exemption for the JDC.

Among other U.S. Open players on the commitment list are: Sang-Moon Bae of Korea, Shane Bertsch, Matt Bettencourt, Tommy Biershank, Robert Castro, Joe Durant, Martin Flores, Robert Garrigus, Hunter Haas, Brian Harman, Charles Howell III, Colt Knost, Spencer Levin, Edward Loar, Bill Lunde, Steve Marino, David Mathis, Carl Petterson of Sweden, D.A. Points, Chez Reavie, 2011 John Deere Classic runner up Kyle Stanley, and Chicago area resident and multiple Tour winner Mark Wilson.

British Open contestants already committed to play in the John Deere Classic include: Bae, Byrd, Chad Campbell, Choi, Daniel Chopra, former Players champion Tim Clark, former British Open champions John Daly, David Duval, and Todd Hamilton; James Driscoll, Howell III, Mayakoba Classic champion rookie John Huh, Jacobson, Zach Johnson, Garth Mulroy of South Africa, Petterson, Reavie, Andres Romero, Senden, Stanley, and Stricker.

The field also includes 24 tournament winners in the last two years, including eight 2012 winners – Stricker, Wilson, Snedeker, Stanley, Huh, Petterson, and Zach Johnson.

2005 John Deere Classic champion Sean O’Hair also is in the field.  Other defending champions in the field are Bryce Molder (Frys.com), Chris Kirk (True South Classic in Madison, Miss.), Scott Stallings (Greenbrier), Brendon Todd (PGA Tour Qualifying School), and Jerry Kelly (ADT Skills Challenge along with Zach Johnson).

Other major championship winners in the field include Lee Janzen (U.S. Open), Rich Beem (PGA Championship), and Shaun Micheel (PGA Championship). Former Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup team members include Chris DiMarco, J.J. Henry, and Jeff Overton.

The field also includes three former U.S. Amateur champions: Ricky Barnes, Danny Lee, and Colt Knost.

Stricker will be attempting to become only the fifth player in history to win the same tournament four consecutive times when the PGA TOUR returns to TPC Deere Run, July 9-15. Young Tom Morris, Gene Sarazen, Walter Hagen, and Tiger Woods (twice) are the only other players to achieve the feat at a championship level. 

This year’s purse is $4.6 million with the winner receiving $828,000.