Looking ahead to the 2016 Masters

It was an interesting year in 2015 with the collapse of Tiger Woods and the emergence of a new generation of superstars. The golf landscape is changing and it will be interesting to see if 2016 build on those changes or if Tiger and Phil can force at least a temporary return to the ways things used to be.

Odds for the 2016 Masters championship have been on the board for a while now, but with the PGA Tour slowing to snail’s pace throughout the winter, it’s a great time to think about handicapping the first major tournament of the 2016 season before you start golf betting online.

Here’s a breakdown of the oddsmakers’ favorites to sport the green jacket at Augusta National in the spring of 2016.

Jordan Spieth (6/1)

Spieth took the golf world by storm in 2015 and it was sparked at Augusta with a wire-to-wire victory in which the 22 year old tied Tiger Woods’ 1997 record score of 18-under par for the Masters tournament.

Spieth has proven he’s no fluke either, with a U.S. Open win, a T4 finish at the British Open and a runner-up showing in the PGA Championship. While his 28 birdies at Augusta in 2015 dominated the course, there has been just one repeat Masters winner in the past 15 years and that was Woods in 2001 and 2002.

Rory McIlroy (7/1)

McIlroy finished fourth at the 2015 Masters – the only major tournament title he has yet to claim. While that was a career-best finish, McIlroy trailed off toward the end of the season and his Masters odds reflect that decline, as well as Spieth’s dominance.

Augusta hasn’t been kind to McIlroy before the past two years, finishing no higher than 15th and missing the cut in 2010. McIlroy has considered cutting back his European tournaments to limit his travel load and focus on this elusive championship.

Jason Day (7/1)

Day won the PGA Championship in 2015, just one of his five tournament victories last season which helped push him to No. 1 in the World Golf Rankings. His best showing at the Masters was a T2 finish in 2011, two strokes back of winner Charl Schwartzel. Since then, Day has posted finishes of T28 in 2015, T20 in 2014, third in 2013, and withdrew from the 2012 Masters tournament.

His ability to hit long from the tees – third overall in driving distance – and limit strokes when on the green – second in putting average – puts him up there with Spieth and McIlroy at Augusta this coming spring.

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