Scheduled for July 19-22 this year, the True South Classic at Annandale Golf Club is expecting to see some of the game’s biggest stars in attendance this year. In a press release by Bruno Event Team, the new management firm in charge of the tournament which takes place outside Jackson, Miss., the tournament claimed the following:
All the stars on the PGA Tour including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh, Dustin Johnson, Keegan Bradley, Bubba Watson and more are expected to compete for the $3 million purse. The tournament will feature a standard eligibility field of 132 players and 72 holes of stroke play …. Past champions of the tournament include Fred Funk (2004), John Huston (2003), Steve Lowery (2000), the reigning FedEx Cup champion Bill Haas (2010) and the current No. 1 in the world ranking, Luke Donald (2002).
“We are very excited to be back involved in this tournament with its rich history,” stated Gene Hallman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bruno Event Team. “Jackson and the entire state of Mississippi have always supported this event in a big way. We will work closely with the Century Club Charities and fully intend to dedicate our company’s resources to ensure this a permanent event on the Mississippi sports calendar.”
Sounds like a great way to elevate the status of a tournament that has been previously irrelevant, except for one major problem: The True South Classic happens to take place at the exact same time as the British Open. That $3 million purse certainly sounds enticing, but considering that’s less than half the purse being offered at The Open Championship, I don’t imagine the True South Classic is going to live up to their billing.
Unless one of the aforementioned stars is a closet fan of heat stroke, there simply aren’t many scenarios that would warrant someone skipping a major championship to play anywhere in Mississippi in the middle of July. Who knows? Didn’t Tiger Woods receive treatment for his sexual escapades somewhere in Mississippi? Maybe he’s due for a refresher course on discretion.
Bubba Watson definitely isn’t a big fan of Europe, so maybe if the True South Classic allows the 2012 Masters Champion to play barefooted in overalls like in the “Golf Boys” video and they let him circumvent any tour rule that says it would be illegal to drive the General Lee on the course during play he’d consider it. Otherwise, I’m gonna go out on a limb and say the True South Classic is going to remain the premier destination for fledgling PGA Tour veterans and naive tour rookies who don’t know that it’s 114 degrees in Mississippi in July.
Thanks to Eye On Golf for the story.