For the second time in less than 6 months the disc golf world will descend on Tyler, Texas for the Annual Texas State Disc Golf Championship. This time, for the 26th edition. The previous, 25th, edition of this tournament was held in this same Tyler, Texas park in October of last year. The originally scheduled event was pushed back from it's original March 26th start date and off the National Tour schedule due to the COVID pandemic. It was made up October 2nd-4th, albeit without as much glitz and glamour. Bradley Williams won the October event by 3 strokes over G.T. Hancock after shooting a blistering 47 on the first day of the tournament. Last years event was held on 2 of the 3 courses that sit in Lindsey Park. This year's, however, will just be played on the Gold Course more commonly known as Dogwood. It is the newest addition to the Lindsey Park complex and known to be the most difficult, as well. According to the event organizers the setup will mirror the October setup so anyone who played then will, assuredly, have a leg up.
This course plays narrow with tree lined fairways and will, undoubtedly, favor golfers that can control and shape their shots. Players will need to take every advantage they can get as there were only 4 holes that played under par in the final round of last years event that was played on this course. The entirety of the Sunday round last year saw one player submit a bogey free score card as Caleb WIlkins managed to shoot a 6 under on his way to a third place tie for the tournament. The holes to watch will be the 681 foot par 4 10th and the par 3 11th that saw just 3 birdies between them in that final round. This year's event should be a fun affair with some of the top names in disc golf attempting to take on this exciting course. While our list of Usual Suspects has performed well at this event in years past, this will be the first time on this course for a few of them so it may take some time for them to find their stride on this difficult course.
Garrett Gurthie: Garrett comes into this event with a 10th place finish and 3rd place finish to his name. Like many others, he skipped the October event but already has a top 5 to his name thus far this year. As a bomber he may struggle early on but as a constant professional I would expect him to dial it in as the weekend progresses.
James Conrad: Conrad struggled last week in Waco but faired well in Las Vegas. As a player long known for throwing putters off the tee, he will mostly likely benefit from their control in the woods. He has a 5th place and 10th place finish in previous years at this event and I would expect nothing less from him this year.
Paul Ulibarri: Ulibarri continues to impress early on in the season with consecutive top 15 finishes in Vegas, Scottsdale and Waco. He has 2 top 10 finishes to go along with a 14th place finish at this event despite skipping last years festivities. Despite that, I would expect him to compete going into Sunday's final round.
Ricky Wysocki (Pick To Win): His play speaks for itself. He won last weeks event, The Open at Belton and he has played here twice in the last five years and won both times. The course may be different but Ricky is not. If he is playing on the lead card Sunday it should be no surprise to anyone.
Bradley Williams: A newcomer to the Usual Suspect's but this should be no surprise as he has finished 1st, 5th, 3rd and 1st in his 4 appearances here including winning last year on this course. I would be more surprised if he wasn't in contention come Sunday than if he was.
Tanner Girouard: A dark horse pick coming into this weekend, he struggled in Waco last week, finishing 90th out of 130 players. A look at his previous 3 times playing here shows why he may be a player to watch this weekend. He finished 8th, 15th and 7th in the last 3 events and while he may not win this one he still could end up hot on the heels of some of the bigger name players.