It’s time to confess. I love predictions. For whatever reason, reading opinions on why a future outcome will happen based on convoluted thoughts fascinates me.
So, in preparations for the 2013 Masters, I’m ready to boldly go where many have gone before. I’m going to try and tell you what will transpire over the next four days (pending weather). And that leads us to my first prediction.
— The tournament will not end on Sunday. A storm is coming toward Augusta and play will likely be delayed either Thursday or Friday. Sorry work friends — I’ll be eating pimento cheese for a few more days. I’ll eventually be back.
— University of California student Michael Weaver, who qualified for his first Masters by finishing second at the U.S. Amateur, will make the cut and win low amateur. He’s been preparing for the week by playing with the likes of Jason Dufner, Nick Watney and Rory McIlroy. When I asked Weaver what he wanted for his 22nd birthday on Friday, he responded, “A tee time Saturday.” I like his chances.
— There will be a hole-in-one at 16. John Huh aced the hole on Monday. Defending champion Bubba Watson found the bottom of the cup Wednesday. The odds say it won’t happen. I say it will.
— The winner of the Par 3 Contest will not only fail to win the tournament, but he’ll miss the cut entirely. Sorry, Ted Potter, Jr. You beat Phil Mickelson and Matt Kuchar in the playoff on Wednesday, but I say your week ends on Friday.
— 53-year-old Fred Couples will make the cut. Ok, this isn’t that bold. Freddie has made 26 of 28 cuts during his career at Augusta National. In fact, he has finished in the Top 15 each of the last three years, and Augusta National Chairman Billy Payne improved his chances even more on Wednesday. Payne increased the cut from the Top 44 and ties to the Top 50 and ties. More golf on the weekend is a win for everyone.
— Lindsey Vonn will make an appearance at Augusta National. Hey, I can hope, right?
— Graeme McDowell will have a better finish than Rory McIlroy. Of the two guys from Northern Ireland, McIlroy is generating substantially more buzz to get his first Masters win. But McDowell’s tie for 12th in 2012 is a better Augusta showing that McIlroy has ever achieved. Nerves don’t work at The Masters. It will be a few more years until McIlroy conquers those Augusta nerves and wins his first green jacket.
— Tiger Woods will be in the final group on Sunday. He says his life is “more balanced” than it’s been in years, and his game shows it. He’s won three times already this year, but he hasn’t won this tournament since 2005. Woods often says he just wants to put himself in position to win. I say he does that this week.
— Yes, Tiger will be there, but Phil Mickelson will win the tournament. In a dramatic Monday afternoon in Augusta, Mickelson will make a gallery-driven final round charge, shooting a 63 en route to his fourth Masters title. No player cares more about winning at Augusta National than Mickelson, and if he wins, he’ll be considered perhaps the greatest Masters player of his generation.
— Callaway will sell 10 million Phrankenwood drivers. If Phil’s in contention, get ready to hear that term all week. It’ll be even more popular than “Dufnering.”
To see an interview with Cal’s Michael Weaver, watch Wednesday’s edition of “LIVE from Augusta National” on signalscv.com/masters. To hear more of Vince’s thoughts from The Masters, follow him at twitter.com/vincejohnson.