Alabama vs. Texas: Our staff predictions

Men's Rankings »

RankNameSchoolRating
1Joey GarberGeorgia  68.61 
2Robby SheltonAlabama  68.62 
3Patrick RodgersStanford  68.67 
4Ollie SchniederjansGA Tech  68.81 
5Cameron WilsonStanford  69.05 

Men's Team Rankings »

RankNameRatingEvents
1Alabama 68.92 
2Georgia 69.62 
3Georgia Tech 69.62 
4Oklahoma State 69.72  10 
5California 69.81  11 

PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. – Goliath vs. Goliath. No. 1 vs. No. 2. The way it was meant to be, without the BCS getting involved.

Sunday afternoon at Riviera Country Club promises to be epic, as the Alabama Crimson Tide (the top seed for match play and second-ranked team in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings) take on the Texas Longhorns (the third seed for match play and top-ranked team in the Golfweek/Sagarins).

Our crew on the scene - Ryan Lavner, Sean Martin, Lance Ringler and Ron Balicki - have kept you up-to-date on the latest storylines all week long, while our Tracy Wilcox has brought you images from every corner of golf that Riviera has to offer.

But, now, it is time for our crew to put all of that said knowledge to the test. They've watched all 10 players who will take the course on Sunday, and seemingly know how each match might play out.

(In case you don't know everyone on these squads, check out Lance Ringler's scouting report for the final.)

Take a look at our staff picks below. In case you don't want to do the math, only one of our experts is taking Texas to win it all.

Let us know whom you think will win at the bottom of this file with the Facebook interface.

 

Bobby Wyatt (Alabama) vs. Toni Hakula (Texas)

Cory Whitsett (Alabama) vs. Dylan Frittelli (Texas)

Scott Strohmeyer (Alabama) vs. Cody Gribble (Texas)

Justin Thomas (Alabama) vs.  Jordan Spieth (Texas)

Hunter Hamrick (Alabama) vs. Julio Vegas (Texas)
Ringler

Bobby Wyatt. Hakula has won 2 points for Texas, while Wyatt has been shutout. While I like the momentum Hakula has, Wyatt will not want to leave Riviera being shut out.

Dylan Frittelli. Going with the veteran who has had an outstanding season.

Cody Gribble. Coin flip here. The player that wins this championship will be the MVP. Both players enter this match undefeated and I am giving the edge to Texas sophomore.

Jordan Spieth. It does not get any better than this match-up featuring the top two players in college golf. Thomas has struggled in match play and Spieth appears to be getting better each day.

Julio Vegas. Vegas would be another candidate for MVP this week. Vegas has shown no let-up and appears to be getting better as the week continues.

Martin

Bobby Wyatt. Often overlooked because of teammates Justin Thomas and Cory Whitsett, Wyatt is No. 18 in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings.

Cory Whitsett. Was fourth in stroke play and won his first two matches in convincing fashion. Seems to love Riviera.

Cody Gribble. Closed Saturday's match in style, with a conceded birdie on the 17th. This will be a tight match between two unsung heroes.

Justin Thomas. He moved to No. 1 in the Golfweek rankings with his performance at Riviera.

Julio Vegas. He's come up huge for Texas and I expect him to do more of the same. He's 17th in Golfweek's rankings.

Lavner

Toni Hakula, Simple case of who’s hot, who’s not -- Hakula is 2-0 this week, Wyatt 0-2.

Cory Whitsett. Whitsett has played as well as anybody in the field this week.

Scott Strohmeyer. A savvy match-play performer, ‘Strobie’ will improve to 3-0.

Justin Thomas. This should be tight, but Thomas will show why he’s my pick for Player of the Year.

Julio Vegas. It won’t matter if my predictions pan out, but Vegas has played well all week and he’ll shine again.

Balicki

Toni Hakula. Hakula has not played the 18th hole yet in match play

Cory Whitsett. On a roll with two impressive wins so far.

Cody Gribble. Gribble wins the battle of the two match-play unbeatens.

Justin Thomas. Thomas ready to put exclamation point on a great rookie year.

Hunter Hamrick. Tide senior ready to end his college career on the highest note of all.

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