U.S. Open 2021: 5 dark horse sleepers who can win at Torrey Pines

Jason Kokrak, U.S. Open 2021. Mandatory Credit: Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Kokrak, U.S. Open 2021. Mandatory Credit: Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports /
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U.S. Open sleepers
Garrick Higgo, U.S. Open 2021. Mandatory Credit: David Yeazell-USA TODAY Sports /

The 2021 U.S. Open is heading back to Torrey Pines and, while we look at the betting odds, these five sleepers and dark horses could win this week. 

While the U.S. Open has only been played at Torrey Pines once before back in 2008, it’s already in the lore of the golfing world for the result it produced — namely, an iconic Tiger Woods victory. Now, the major championship circuit circles back to the venue in 2021 in hopes that the same type of drama can deliver once again.

The favorites are obviously dominating the conversation when it comes to the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines. Jon Rahm returns from his COVID-19 absence that robbed him of a victory at the Memorial and will tee it up at a place where he’s had a ton of success during the PGA Tour season. Moreover, we’ll be looking for the likes of Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy, Collin Morikawa and so on to pop up with a major on the line.

However, the first two major championships of 2021 have been won by relative dark horses and sleepers with Hideki Matsuyama and Phil Mickelson emerging victorious. So what would make the 2021 U.S. Open any different? With that thought process, we’re breaking down five sleepers (worse than +5000 odds) who could win at Torrey Pines.

Note: All odds are courtesy of WynnBET and all stats are via PGATour.com unless otherwise noted.

U.S. Open 2021 sleeper No. 5: Garrick Higgo (+6000)

Fresh off winning at the Palmetto Championship in just his second PGA Tour start of his young career, 22-year-old South African Garrick Higgo might be the hottest golfer in the world right now. The win at Congaree marks the sixth time he’s won (across four different tours) over essentially the past two years. He’s simply been phenomenal as of late.

Now, it should be said that the trend is often to fade the winner of the previous week, whether the next tournament is the U.S. Open or an opposite field event. But with the way that Higgo has been playing and winning early in his young career, the blissful ignorance of youth might be playing in his favor as he heads to Torrey Pines with the best in the world.

For such a young player, Higgo’s ability to succeed in every facet of the game is of paramount importance. At Congaree, h was inside the top 15 in Strokes Gained for Off the Tee, Approach and Putting. The one worry is that his Around the Green game has been a tad shaky, which could hurt him at the penal rough of Torrey Pines. With that said, his form and overall game just look too good to pass up as a possible sleeper.