Franklin Templeton Shootout Updates and Information

Greg NormanNAPLES, Fla. - Franklin Templeton Shootout host Greg Norman has paired a collection of golf's most decorated individuals into two-man teams as the 23rd annual Shootout returns for an 11th time to Tiburón Golf Club at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples, December 7-11.

Norman recently announced the 24-man field that features some of golf's young stars, including 2011 PGA Champion Keegan Bradley, Player of the Year candidate Webb Simpson and the talented and colorful Rickie Fowler. In addition, World No. 5 Steve Stricker leads a group of 12 individuals who have compiled 15 titles this year. There are also six major championship winners and a pair of Hall of Famers scheduled to compete. As a group, they have amassed 132 total PGA TOUR victories, including nine major championship trophies.

Fred Funk and Brandt Snedeker have both withdrawn due to recent unscheduled surgeries. Funk will be replaced by Chad Campbell, who finished tied for fifth at this year's Open Championship and has four career victories. Bo Van Pelt, who won Sunday in Malaysia, will replace Snedeker. Funk had to undergo thumb surgery and Snedeker had surgery on his hip.

"I received a lot of feedback from the players this year regarding who they would like to play with," Norman said. "The fact that so many were interested is a nice reflection of how they view this event and what it means. The balance of this group is tremendous, and I can envision some very competitive teams rising to the occasion this year.

Rickie Fowler"Personally, I look forward to playing alongside Fredrik Jacobson, who won on TOUR earlier this year," Norman added. "I've admired his game and have come to enjoy his company."

Throughout its history, the Shootout has included many of golf's greatest players. As a premier PGA TOUR post-season event, the Franklin Templeton Shootout will once again feature a modified alternate-shot format during the first round, a better ball Saturday and a final-round scramble. This year, Golf Channel will televise Friday and NBC will broadcast the weekend competition.

For the latest Franklin Templeton Shootout news and information, please visit the official tournament website awww.franklintempletonshootout.com

Below is a snapshot of the 12 teams striving to earn this year's title:

Fredrik Jacobson & Greg Norman:
These two will be playing together for the first time. Jacobson earned his first career victory earlier this season at the Travelers Championship. He also finished T14 at the U.S. Open and T16 at the Open Championship. Norman, who won in 1998 with Steve Elkington, will be making his 22nd appearance while Jacobson will be making his Shootout debut.

Jerry Kelly & Steve Stricker:
This marks the fourth consecutive year the 2009 champions will play together. Kelly and Stricker are both from Madison, Wisc., and were born exactly three month's apart. They have combined for 14 PGA TOUR victories - Kelly three and Stricker 11, including two this year. Kelly has won two Shootout titles in six appearances. His first came in 2006 with Rod Pampling. Stricker, ranked fourth in the world, will compete for the fourth consecutive year.

Keegan Bradley & Brendan Steele:
This duo of PGA TOUR rookies combined for three wins this year. Bradley is a two-time winner, including his victory at the PGA Championship. Steele won the Valero Texas Open. Both have famous relatives. Steele's uncle is an actor who plays "Luke" on General Hospital and Bradley's aunt is World Golf Hall of Fame member Pat Bradley.

Charles Howell III & Justin Leonard:
This Oklahoma State and University of Texas team is together for the first time. Howell III is a two-time winner on TOUR and has enjoyed a consistent year, finishing third twice and among the top 10 on seven occasions. Leonard is a 12-time winner whose best finish this year was second at Disney. Leonard will be making his seventh appearance in the Shootout while Howell III is making his fourth and first since 2007.

Rickie Fowler & Camilo Villegas:
You might have to fight the crowds to follow this team. These two dynamic young players could be favorites when the competition begins. Both have a "go-for-it" attitude. Fowler recently won his first professional event in Asia. Since 2010, when he was named Rookie of the Year, Fowler has been among the top 10 in 11 tournaments and finished second three times. Villegas is a three-time winner on TOUR and was a member of Norman's President Cup team in 2009.

Anthony Kim & Webb Simpson:
Another dynamic young team. Simpson has enjoyed a breakthrough year with multiple wins that earned him the No. 2 spot on the TOUR's Official Money list, a nomination for Player of the Year and a trip to his first Presidents Cup. While this is Simpson's first Shootout, Kim returns for his third. Last year, he and Chris DiMarco were tied for third. Combined, this duo has won five TOUR titles in the past four years.

Stewart Cink & Bo Van Pelt:
Van Pelt is the hot player on this team, which will compete for the first time. Including his win in Malaysia, Van Pelt has six top-10 finishes this year in addition to the eight he accumulated in 2010 and is currently ranked 25th in the world. Cink, winner of the 2009 Open Championship and owner of six career victories, will be making his sixth appearance at the Shootout.

Jason Dufner & Sean O'Hair:
This is a rookie team to the Shootout. Both will compete for the first time and bring impressive credentials. O'Hair has won four times, including this year's Canadian Open. Dufner is enjoying his best year on TOUR, with seven top-10 finishes that include a pair of runner-up finishes in playoffs-one of which occurred at the PGA Championship.

Chad Campbell & Chris DiMarco:
Campbell has four career victories and DiMarco three. Although this will be the first time they have played together, both have two top-five finishes in past Shootout appearances with different partners. Another common factor, each has finished second in major championships during their career--DiMarco three times and Campbell once.

Rory Sabbatini & Jhonattan Vegas:
Sabbatini is from South Africa and Vegas is from Venezuela, where the entire country celebrated when he became the first ever Venezuelan to not only be a member of the TOUR but to win this year at the Bob Hope Classic. Sabbatini is a veteran player who won for the sixth time this year with his victory at The Honda Classic.

Mark Calcavecchia & Nick Price:
Two of the game's nicest guys and great competitors have a combined 25 appearances in the Shootout. Calcavecchia is a two-time Shootout champion, most recently in 2007 with Woody Austin. Both of these major champions spend most of their time on the Champions Tour these days. Each has earned a victory this year and, combined, they have 24 top-10 finishes on the age 50-and-over circuit.

J.B. Holmes & Kenny Perry:
This Kentucky duo has experienced Shootout success together. This will be Perry's eighth appearance and Holmes' fourth. Perry is a multiple champion of the Shootout, most recently in 2008. For Holmes, a two-time TOUR winner, this will mark the first time back in competition since undergoing brain surgery in late summer. Perry, a 14-time winner on TOUR, won this fall on the Champions Tour for the first time.

 

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