NATIONWIDE - WNB Golf Classic Preview
From The Sports Network

DATES: Thursday, September 24th through Sunday, September 27th
SITE: Midland Country Club, Midland, Texas
COURSE ARCHITECT: Ralph Plummer (1951), Ault, Clark & Assoc. (re-design, 1988)
PAR: 72
YARDAGE: 7,380
Hole-By-Hole:1 - Par 4 426 Yds10 - Par 4 431 Yds
2 - Par 5 579 Yds11 - Par 3 185 Yds
3 - Par 3 204 Yds12 - Par 5 552 Yds
4 - Par 5 536 Yds13 - Par 4 435 Yds
5 - Par 4 436 Yds14 - Par 4 411 Yds
6 - Par 4 458 Yds15 - Par 5 601 Yds
7 - Par 4 419 Yds16 - Par 3 189 Yds
8 - Par 3 224 Yds17 - Par 4 386 Yds
9 - Par 4 438 Yds18 - Par 4 470 Yds
36 3,720 Yds36 3,660 Yds
Annual:  18th
Television:  None
Defending Champion:  Marc Leishman (Not defending)
Runner-Up:  Keoke Cotner
Tournament Record:  264 (Chad Campbell, 2001)
54-Hole Record:  195 (Chad Campbell, 2001)
36-Hole Record:  128 (Kevin Johnson, 2000)
18-Hole Record:  62 (Kevin Johnson, 1997; Dicky Thompson, 1999; Guy Boros,
  Todd Barranger, 2000 - Club at Mission Dorado)
Course Record:  63 (Jim McGovern, 2002; Brian Guetz, 2007)
Total Purse:  $525,000
Shares:  1st Place - $94,500; 2nd Place - $56,700; 3rd Place - $35,700
2008 Finish
Marc Leishman267Won Joon Lee280
Keoke Cotner278Spencer Levin280
Aron Price279Five players at281
Greg Chalmers280
Darron Stiles280
Past WNB Golf Classic Winners
YearWinner (Score) -- Runners-Up
2008Marc Leishman (267) -- Keoke Cotner
2007*Brad Adamonis (278) -- Tjaart van der Walt, Vance Veazey, Ron Whittaker
2006*Brandt Snedeker (272) -- Aron Price
2005Kris Cox (270) -- Craig Bowden, Jerry Smith, Chris Tidland
2004*Charley Hoffman (282) -- Jeff Gove, Craig Lile
2003D.J. Brigman (272) -- Jason Dufner, Mark Hensby, Jimmy Walker
2002*Tag Ridings (272) -- Mark Hensby
2001Chad Campbell (264) -- Todd Fischer
2000Kevin Johnson (268) -- Mark Hensby
1999David Berganio, Jr. (269) -- Paul Gow, Dicky Thompson
1998*Stiles Mitchell (276) -- Woody Austin, Jeff Barlow
1997Paul Gow (267) -- Steve Lamontagne
1996Michael Christie (270) -- Anthony Rodriguez
1995Hugh Royer III (275) -- Paul Claxton, Frank Conner, Keoke Cotner,
Franklin Langham, Dave Miley, Chris Smith,
Phil Tataurangi
1994Bruce Vaughan (269) -- Gary Rusnak, Bob Wolcott
1993#*Franklin Langham (202) -- Doug Martin
1992#Taylor Smith (205) -- Pete Jordan, Andrew Morse

* - Won in Playoff

# - 54-Hole Tournament

Note:Formerly called Ben Hogan Permian Basin Open (1992), NIKE Permian
Basin Open (1993-99), Buy.Com Permian Basin Open (2000-01), Permian Basin Open (2002), Permian Basin Charity Golf Classic (2003-06).

Top Contenders in the Field
Keoke CotnerT-57T-23T-6mcT-622nd
Won Joon Lee---------------T-4
Darron Stiles---------------T-4
Fabian Gomez------------T-45T-8
Cameron Percy------T-50------T-8
Vance Veazey---mcmc---T-2T-13
Tom Gillis---------T-46T-10T-13
Mark Brooks---------------T-15
D.J. BrigmanWon------T-38---T-21
Bubba Dickerson------mc------T-27
Fran QuinnmcmcmcT-54T-64T-35
Garth Mulroy------------T-5mc
B.J. Staten------------T-5mc
Chris TidlandmcT-6T-2mc---mc
Kris Cox------Won------mc
Blake Adams---------------mc
Kevin JohnsonT-16mcT-20T-27mc---
Sports Network Selections

Pick to Win - Tom Gillis
Darkhorse - B.J. Staten
Last Week's Pick to Win (Andrew Buckle) - Finished tied for 9th
Last Week's Darkhorse (Steve Wheatcroft) - Finished tied for 17th
Only four tournaments remain as players jockey for position for the season- ending Tour Championship. The top-60 players on the money list will advance to the final event of the season. Jhonattan Vegas currently resides in the 60th spot, just $2,281 ahead of 2000 PGA Championship runner-up Bob May. No lead is safe, however, as Justin Hicks, 63rd on the money list, is just $4,196 behind Vegas.

Last year, Marc Leishman cruised to an 11-shot win over Keoke Cotner at this event, shooting a four-under 68 in the final round to claim his first Nationwide Tour victory. Leishman, who led by five shots heading into the final round at Midland Country Club, finished at 21-under-par 267 and tied the all-time Nationwide Tour record for largest winning margin.

Leishman will not be on hand to defend his title, as he earned his PGA Tour card for 2009 by finishing 19th on the 2008 Nationwide Tour money list. Leishman has had a very good rookie season on the PGA Tour this year, making 17 cuts in 25 events, with his best finish being a tie for second two weeks ago at the BMW Championship. Leishman is playing this week in the final event of the PGA Tour Playoffs for the FedExCup at THE TOUR Championship.

In 2007, Brad Adamonis escaped a four-way playoff to win this event, beating Tjaart van der Walt with a par at the eighth extra hole for his first Nationwide Tour title. Adamonis and van der Walt played six playoff holes head-to-head after Ron Whittaker was eliminated on the first sudden-death hole and Vance Veazey was knocked out on the second. The four players ended regulation tied at 10-under 278. Adamonis won the second-longest playoff in Nationwide Tour history by making eight consecutive pars -- the last one coming on a four-foot putt at the par-three 16th to finally finish off van der Walt.

In 2006, Brandt Snedeker birdied the 72nd hole to force a playoff against Aron Price, then birdied the first playoff hole to win this event. Snedeker became the first player in the history of this event to win wire-to-wire.

This will be the eighth straight year in which Midland Country Club is hosting this event. The previous 10 years of the tournament were all held at the Club at Mission Dorado.

In 2002, there was plenty of drama at this event. Sitting in the fairway on the first playoff hole, Tag Ridings slammed a 138-yard pitching-wedge into the bottom of the cup for eagle to defeat Mark Hensby for his first career title.

When Chad Campbell captured the 2001 event, he set a tournament record of 24- under 264, breaking the previous mark of 267 set by Paul Gow in 1997. Campbell's 54-hole mark of 195 was also a new record.

There have been six playoffs in tournament history. The first came in 1993 when Franklin Langham defeated Doug Martin on the first extra hole; the second came in 1998 when Stiles Mitchell knocked off Jeff Barlow and Woody Austin with a par on the first playoff hole; the third was in 2002 when Ridings hit his remarkable shot; Charley Hoffman defeated Jeff Gove and Craig Lile with a birdie on the third extra hole in 2004; Snedeker defeated Aron Price with a birdie on the first playoff hole in 2006; and Adamonis triumphed in 2007 in a four-way playoff. Michael Christie (1996) and D.J. Brigman (2003) own the best final-day comebacks at this event when they overcame three-shot deficits.

The Nationwide Tour moves to California next week for the inaugural Soboba Classic at The Country Club at Soboba Springs in San Jacinto.

09/22 16:15:36 ET

As of September 22, 2009, at 04:15 PM ET

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