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BMW Championship preview: Glover, Cantlay both chasing 3-peat

Andy Lyons / Getty Images Sport / Getty

It's very rare that a three-peat is in play on the PGA TOUR, but at this week's BMW Invitational at Olympia Fields, two players are gunning for the feat.

Lucas Glover comes in red-hot with wins at the Wyndham Championship and FedEx St. Jude Championship the past two weeks, and he's going for his third in a row at the second event in the FedEx Cup. Patrick Cantlay, who lost in a playoff to Glover last week in Memphis, collected victories at this event in each of the past two seasons.

With 50 players in the field but only 30 advancing to next week's TOUR Championship, there will be plenty of high drama just outside Chicago.

Where: Olympia Fields Country Club (North Course), Olympia Fields, Illinois
When: Aug. 17-20

How to watch

Date Time Channel
Aug. 17 2:00 - 6:00 p.m. Golf Channel
Aug. 18 2:00 - 6:00 p.m. Golf Channel
Aug. 19 1:00 - 3:00 p.m. Golf Channel
3:00 - 6:00 p.m. CBS
Aug. 20 12:00 - 2:00 p.m. Golf Channel
2:00 - 6:00 p.m. CBS

Last year's result

Ben Jared / PGA TOUR / Getty

After winning the tournament at Caves Valley in Maryland in 2021, Cantlay became the first player to successfully defend a FedEx Cup Playoff event with his victory in Delaware last year. The American made a clutch birdie on the 71st hole to secure the one-shot win over Scott Stallings. It was a much different triumph at 14-under than his previous BMW Championship win, in which he had to get to 27-under and outlast Bryson DeChambeau in a six-hole playoff.

Expect a much different scene at Olympia Fields, as the North Course traditionally presents a much stiffer challenge than Caves Valley or Delaware. The last time the BMW Championship was played at Olympia Fields, Jon Rahm claimed victory in a playoff over Dustin Johnson with an outrageous 66-foot birdie on the first extra hole. However, Rahm's winning score was 4-under for the entire week - a signal that the historic layout is up for the test from the world's best.

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3 reasons to watch

Chance for 3 in a row

Glover entered the Wyndham Championship with just four wins over his 19-year career. Two weeks later, he's got six and has jumped all the way to No. 4 in the FedEx Cup standings. According to the PGA TOUR, this is the 63rd time since 1997 that a player has had a chance to win three weeks in a row, with only 18 completing that feat. Of those 18 successful attempts, 14 came from Tiger Woods. Cantlay's quest for three straight BMW Championships would make him just the 10th man since World War II to do it. The fact the event has been held on a different course each time only adds weight to what the 31-year-old hopes to accomplish.

Race for the top 30

Gregory Shamus / Getty Images Sport / Getty

While a win at the tournament is top of mind for most players, getting inside the top 30 and qualifying for the TOUR Championship isn't far behind. The cut for next week at East Lake will raise the stakes down the stretch at Olympia Fields with some big names needing strong weeks to advance.

The bubble currently has Jordan Spieth, Sungjae Im, Chris Kirk, and Sam Burns occupying the final four slots, with Sahith Theegala, Justin Rose, Kurt Kitayama, and Denny McCarthy the first four to miss out.

Rank Player Points
27 Jordan Spieth 1422
28 Sungjae Im 1420
29 Chris Kirk 1361
30 Sam Burns 1361
31 Sahith Theegala 1294
32 Justin Rose 1256
33 Kurt Kitayama 1242
34 Denny McCarthy 1192

Other notables residing in slots 30-50 include Matt Fitzpatrick, Cameron Young, and Hideki Matsuyama.

Push for the Ryder Cup

It's impossible to see what Glover has accomplished the last couple weeks and not think of the Ryder Cup at the end of September. The 43-year-old was nowhere near the radar of the American team prior to his victories and now he's knocking on the door for a captain's pick. Glover admitted he wasn't thinking about the Ryder Cup until he claimed his second win - but he desperately wants to represent his country.

Captain Zach Johnson will finalize the American roster after the TOUR Championship, with the top six qualifiers joined by six captain's picks. With Xander Schauffele and Spieth virtual locks as captain's picks, that leaves four slots. Golfers like Glover, Young, Collin Morikawa, Burns, Keegan Bradley and Rickie Fowler have work to do this week to impress the captain.

Betting odds

Rory McIlroy +700
Scottie Scheffler +750
Jon Rahm +800
Patrick Cantlay +1100
Viktor Hovland +1600
Xander Schauffele +1800
Max Homa +2200
Tommy Fleetwood +2200
Collin Morikawa +2500
Jordan Spieth +2500
Tyrrell Hatton +3000
Cameron Young +3300
Hideki Matsuyama +3300
Lucas Glover +3300
Rickie Fowler +3500
Russell Henley +3500
Tom Kim +3500

Odds via theScore Bet

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