This Week in Golf -- Sept. 20 through Sept. 23

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PGA TOUR - TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP, East Lake Golf Club, Atlanta, Georgia - The final event of the 2012 FedExCup season kicks off on Thursday at East Lake.

Rory McIlroy enters the event as the leader on the points list as he has won three of the last four PGA Tour events he competed in. McIlroy started that run with an 8-shot win at the PGA Championship.

He won the last two Playoff events and increased his points lead over Tiger Woods to more than 3,000. However, all 30 players that made the Tour Championship had their points reset so that all 30 have a mathematical chance to win the FedExCup title with a win this week.

Last year, Bill Haas parred the third extra hole to defeat Hunter Mahan to win both the Tour Championship and the FedExCup. The shot that everyone remembers was on the second extra hole.

Haas pulled his second shot left of the green and his ball rolled down into the edge of the water. He blasted his ball out of the water to two feet and made par, while Mahan 2-putted for par.

Mahan failed to get up and down for par from a bunker on the third playoff hole, and Haas won the title when his 4-foot par putt found the bottom of the cup. Haas started the week 25th in the points list, but won the FedExCup title as the top players on the points list didn't do enough to hold him off.

Haas struggled to a final-round 78 at the BMW Championship two weeks ago and cost himself a spot in the field. Mahan did qualify, but is 23rd on the points list and has just one top-10 finish since he won in Houston the week before the Masters.

Of the previous five FedExCup winners, just two are in the field this week. Woods, a two-time winner, and 2010 champ Jim Furyk are at East Lake.

Golf Channel has extensive coverage the first two days, then early coverage on the weekend before handing off to NBC.

Next week is the Ryder Cup, where the European team will look to retain the Cup at Medinah. The following week the Fall Series starts with the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospital for Children Open, where Kevin Na won last year.


NAVISTAR LPGA CLASSIC, RTJ Capitol Hill Golf Club (The Senator Course), Prattville, Alabama - The LPGA Tour returns to the United States for one event before heading to Asia for its next four tournaments. This is the final full- field event in the U.S. this year for the tour.

Last year, Lexi Thompson became the youngest winner in LPGA Tour history as she cruised to a 5-shot win. Thompson led Stacy Lewis and Becky Morgan by two strokes after 36 holes.

The teenager then fired a 5-under 67 in the third round to grab a 5-shot lead entering the final round. Her lead in the final round ballooned to seven, but then shrunk to three.

Thompson birdied 16 and 17 to give herself a 5-shot cushion and that helped let her enjoy the walk up the 18th fairway. She parred the last to become the youngest winner in tour history.

Now 17, Thompson was also the youngest player to play in, and make the cut in an LPGA Tour major.

After back-to-back top-5 finishes at Mobile and the ShopRite, Thompson has finished no better than tied for 14th and missed three straight cuts at one point.

Golf Channel has coverage of all four rounds.

After a 2-week break, the LPGA heads to Asia for four straight events. First up will be the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia, where Na Yeon Choi held off Yani Tseng for the title last year.


WNB GOLF CLASSIC, Midland Country Club, Midland, Texas - The Tour heads to Texas for the WNB Golf Classic.

Danny Lee will be on hand to defend his title this week at Midland Country Club. Lee parred the first playoff hole last year to beat Harris English.

Lee, a former U.S. Amateur champion, will look to become the first player to successfully defend his title on the Tour.

English, who won last year's Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational as an amateur, moved on to the PGA Tour this year, but is not playing this week as he failed to qualify for the Tour Championship.

This is the final event of the year with no television coverage.

The tour will be in North Carolina next week for the Chiquita Classic, where Russell Knox won last year.