Large Crowds Expected at Colonial

By Joey McReynolds

An intriguing field has Colonial Country Club expecting large crowds at the 69th annual Crowne Plaza Invitational.
Rachel Smith, a retail ticket and sales associate, said ticket sales are on the rise.
“The excitement is building by the day,” Smith said. “We are expecting a crowd of well over 100,000 guests.”
Tournament Director Michael Tothe says that number could reach 150,000 guests. He is expecting a 10-15% increase in attendance from the previous year.
“Adam Scott has a lot to do with it,” he said.
Scott will return to Colonial to defend his 2014 title. He won a playoff over Jason Dufner, who will also return to the event.
Jordan Spieth, a Dallas-Fort Worth native, will draw large crowds coming off a Masters win in April.
“Jordan Spieth being from Fort Worth means a lot,” Tothe said. “There are a lot of Texas players.”
Spieth will look to rebound after missing the cut at the Player Championship in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. This will mark Spieth’s second tournament since his Masters win.
Ryan Palmer, another Texas native, enters the tournament with 25-1 odds, according to CBS Sports. 
Other notable participants include Zach Johnson, Boo Weekly, Patrick Reed, and Steve Stricker.
Johnson enters the tournament having finished in the top-10 at Colonial five straight times from 2009-2013. Like Spieth and Scott, Johnson is a Masters champion.
The tournament features a $6.5 million purse, with the winner pocketing $1.17 million, according to the tournament’s official website.
The first round begins Thursday at 7:30 a.m., with the final round of competition slated to begin Sunday at the same time.
Tothe says the Crowne Plaza Invitational, like TCU football, is a must see event in Fort Worth.
“There’s a buzz around Colonial,” Tothe said.