2023 Charles Schwab Challenge Round 1 Matchup Odds & Pick: Bet Eric Cole Over Sam Stevens

2023 Charles Schwab Challenge Round 1 Matchup Odds & Pick: Bet Eric Cole Over Sam Stevens article feature image

Via Warren Little/Getty Images. Pictured: Eric Cole of the United States 4during the second round of the 2023 PGA Championship at Oak Hill Country Club on May 19, 2023 in Rochester, New York.

PGA Championship hangover? Not for us here at Action Network, although I may have had a little too much (Stephan) Jaeger at Oak Hill Country Club and found myself stumbling home on Sunday after his Sunday implosion accounted for nearly a five-unit swing for me in various markets.

It still ended up being a profitable event because of some nice top-40 calls on Justin Rose (+160), Cameron Davis (+260) and Harold Varner III (+210), but now is no time to count our money, as there is value to be pinpointed during this week's Charles Schwab Challenge. Let's discuss a play tomorrow that I will be backing in the head-to-head section for the first round at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth.

If you haven't already, you can find me on Twitter @TeeOffSports. There, I will provide a link to my pre-tournament model, a powerful and interactive data spreadsheet that allows user inputs to create custom golf rankings. That sheet is released every Monday, so be sure to check it out and construct your own numbers from my database of information.

Charles Schwab Challenge Round 1 Matchup Pick

Eric Cole -110 Over Sam Stevens (bet365)

My numbers don't love the options presented to us across nearly any market in the space we can find. I'd probably grade the play I am offering as a three if we were grading the strength of it out of 10, but I do still have an edge.

Nonetheless, I believe Sam Stevens might be marginally overvalued for this event when we dive into the numerical data for the week.

My model noticed this somewhat alarming trend that his profile appears to be getting boosted because of his recent form. We see that with him making five of his last six cuts and climbing up my sheet for projected safety, but the concerns come into play when we pinpoint Colonial Country Club and his sub-par skillset for the track.

Stevens is a golfer who starts experiencing a decrease when running information for a strategic venue over a bomb-and-gouge setup. That stems from the removal of his distance, which has hurt his upside in the past when we look at these short, methodical layouts that only project him 89th out of 120 players in this field over the past season.

That concern gets extrapolated further when we identify his 113th-place rank for Weighted Approach + Weighted Putting, a category I created to try and figure out which golfers in the event would most likely find success in a pitch-and-putt contest.

On the other hand, Cole profiles much better on this type of methodical course as a golfer with a strong wedge game and an elite putter who doesn't smash it long off the tee.

I am going to play this as a standard bet of 1.1 units to win 1, but I only had about 15 points of value on this selection, equating to a respectable 3% long-term edge.

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