Best exotic prop bets for the 2022 U.S. Open: Justin Rose going in the right direction

Justin Rose Golf
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Ricky Dimon

Golf · 1 week ago

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Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports--just about any and all you can think of!--and coaching tennis in Atlanta, Ga. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me.

The U.S. Open is here, which basically means everyone has a chance to talk about the rivalry that is the PGA Tour vs LIV Golf. Of course, neither one of those entities has anything official to do with the U.S. Open. The year’s third major is sanctioned by the USGA, not by the PGA Tour. Thus qualified players from either one of those tours are allowed to play this week at The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts. With basically everyone (other than Tiger Woods) in the field and (other than Dustin Johnson) willing to speak with the media, LIV Golf and its ramifications for the PGA Tour are the talk of the town.

Mercifully, that’s not what we are worried about here. For now we are all about what’s going to happen on the course at The Country Club this week. Amidst all the noise, it should be an incredibly entertaining U.S. Open. Without further ado, let’s dive into some of the best exotic prop bets to be made.

Be sure to check out Diane Knox Balas’ full U.S. Open preview and course insights

Justin Rose to be the top English player (+400)

A 59 was right there for Justin Rose in the final round of last week’s RBC Canadian Open. All he needed was a par on the 72nd hole, but a bogey (Rose actually bogeyed two of the last three holes) made it a 60. The bottom line is that the 41-year-old is in fine form. His T4 at the RBC was his third top-14 finish in his last 4 tournaments. It is also worth noting that Rose is a former U.S. Open champion (2013) and has 18 other top-1o performances at majors — plus a gold medal in Rio 6 years ago. As a +400 fourth choice among the English players, the veteran has great value. Matt Fitzpatrick, Tommy Fleetwood and Tyrrell Hatton are a solid group but most definitely unspectacular.

Corey Conners to be the top Canadian player (+130)

There is a lot to like about Corey Conners finishing as the No. 1 Canadian. One, he is playing great; two, the competition level is unspectacular at best. Adam Hadwin (+300) is the second favorite ahead of Mackenzie Hughes (+400), Nick Taylor (+500), Roger Sloan (+1600) and Ben Silverman (+2000). Conners has 5 top-13 performances since early March and he has been in the top 10 at the Masters 3 years in a row. He knows what he is doing on the big stage. Hadwin hasn’t placed better than T18 since early April and has never finished better than T24 at a major. Hughes has missed 7 cuts since the start of January. Conners should be the frontrunner here without any trouble.

Diane Knox Balas also has her best top 5 and top 10 prop bets for the U.S. Open

A hole in one in at the tournament (-140)

For last month’s PGA Championship I nailed no hole in one in the tournament at -125. The par-3s at Southern Hills are borderline impossible and everyone knew the weather that week was going to be bad. That’s a tough recipe for aces. I don’t see the same story taking place at The Country Club. The four par-3s are far more manageable and the 11th hole is just 131 yards long. Although the green at the 11th isn’t the easiest, the pin position on at least one of the days and possibly two will be forgiving. It will be somewhat windy this week in Brookline, but nothing out of control. Let’s call an ace.

Cameron Young to beat Mito Pereira and Billy Horschel (+190)

When you can get Cameron Young as the underdog in this 3-ball group (both Pereira and Horschel are +165), it’s an opportunity that should not be missed. Since the Masters, Young has 3 top-3 finishes in the span of 4 starts. Pereira is playing well, but in his next shot at major his demons from the 72nd-hole collapse at the PGA Championship could be a factor. Horschel won The Memorial earlier this month, but he has never been a major play. In the 4 biggest events on tour, the 35-year-old has only 1 top-10 result in his entire career.

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