Looking for a favorite in next week’s Zurich Classic of New Orleans? You’ll have plenty to choose from.
The tournament released its final field of 156 players Friday for the tournament, which runs Thursday through April 26 at TPC Louisiana in Avondale.
The field includes nine former Zurich Classic champions, eight major championship winners and three players ranked in the world top 10.
Topping the list is Australian Jason Day, ranked No. 5 in the world. He’s followed closely by American Dustin Johnson at No. 6 and No. 8 Justin Rose, the 2013 U.S. Open champion.
Based on their recent play, Johnson and Rose could be considered early favorites in this year’s Zurich field.
Except for a missed cut in the Honda Classic, Johnson hasn’t finished out of the top six in his past six events, including a win in the WGC-Cadillac Championship and a tie for sixth at the Masters.
Rose was co-runner up last week at the Masters with Phil Mickelson, four strokes back of Jordan Spieth. They tied at 14-under-par, a score that would have won 70 of the previous 78 Masters.
Two other top-20 players are also entered: No. 13 Rickie Fowler and No. 19 Billy Horschel, the 2013 Zurich Classic champion who went on to capture last season’s FedEx Cup title.
Seung-Yul Noh of South Korea is back to defend his title, his first won on the PGA Tour. Other former Zurich champions in the field include former LSU All-American and 2001 PGA champion David Toms (2001), Jason Bohn (2010), K.J. Choi (2002), Jerry Kelly (2009), Andres Romero (2008), three-time major champion Vijay Singh (2004) and Nick Watney (2007).
Other former major champions set to compete are 2011 PGA champion Keegan Bradley, 2009 U.S. Open champion Lucas Glover, two-time U.S. Open winner Retief Goosen, 1997 British Open champion Justin Leonard and 2003 Masters winner Mike Weir.
In addition to Toms, other former LSU players in the field include 2011 NCAA individual champion John Peterson, former Episcopal star Andrew Loupe and Curtis Thompson.
Thompson, the older brother of LPGA major winner Lexi Thompson, and Loupe are in the field on sponsor’s exemptions.
Baton Rouge native Heath Slocum is also entered, as is former Tulane golfer Michael Thompson.
Another prominent entry is Troy Merritt, who shot a 10-under 61 Friday and leads by four strokes midway through the RBC Heritage this week in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. John Merrick, another Zurich participant, is tied for second with defending RBC Heritage champion Matt Kuchar.
Tickets are $25 each day of the tournament and $75 for the week. The first two rounds will be televised by the Golf Channel; the final two rounds are on CBS.
Zurich Classic of New Orleans
Final entry list
Brendon de Jonge
Charles Howell III
Carlos Sainz Jr.
Tyrone Van Aswegen
Bo Van Pelt