Star athletes set to tee off at Edgewood | SierraSun.com
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Star athletes set to tee off at Edgewood

Celebrities and star athletes are set to tee off this weekend at the annual American Century Championship at Edgewood Tahoe in Stateline.

Though there won’t be the traditional fanfare and hundreds of spectators lining fairways that typically goes along with the tournament, dozens of notable athletes still agreed to compete in the 31st annual event with all prize monies going to COVID-19 relief and local nonprofits.

Through its charitable efforts the tournament has raised more than $5 million since its inception.

“The event has a tremendous tradition and is critical to that beautiful resort region,” said two-time defending champion and former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo. “It’ll be fun to try to win again, but the sense of community and charity fundraising will be most important.”

Romo will open today’s first round paired with a two legendary receivers, Jerry Rice and Larry Fitzgerald.

Fresh off signing a 10-year contract extension that tops out at $503 million, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl winning quarterback Patrick Mahomes will be making his American Century Championship debut. Mahomes is set to tee off today with teammate Travis Kelce, and fan-favorite Charles Barkley, who will be making his 25th appearance.

“I want to give a shout out to Lake Tahoe, I know they’ve had a difficult time,” said Barkley at a recent press conference. “And even though fans can’t come to the golf course, I really hope they come up and put some money into the city. A lot of people out there are going to lose their livelihood and the casinos are obviously at the mercy of all that also. So I’m just glad to be going to Lake Tahoe and thank NBC and American Century.”

Barkley finished last year in 88th place out 90 players, and joked about coming out on top this weekend.

“I’ll tell you this,” Barkley said, “if the players are really smart, they’d all bet some money on me and let me win this thing, and we would break every casino in the world. That would be my suggestion to all the players, put a couple hundred dollars on me and find a way for me two win this thing. That would be a nice little check for them.

“But listen, I’m not going to win the thing, but I’m going to play well,” Barkley added. “I’m excited to get to Lake Tahoe. It’s such a wonderful place. And the people are fantastic up there. And hopefully, like I say, even though we won’t have crowds on the golf course, I hope the people in this area come to Lake Tahoe and support the casinos, because it’s been a really difficult time. There’s a lot of people that work in these places, in the bars and restaurants and waitresses and on the floors. I hope people still come and support Lake Tahoe.”

Other notables in the field include: Oscar De La Hoya, Jerome Bettis, Canelo Alvarez, Steve Young, Stephen Curry, Aaron Rodgers, Roger Clemens, Greg Maddux, Marcus Allen, Ozzie Smith, Tim Brown, Charles Woodson, and celebrities Alfonso Ribiero, Rob Riggle, Ray Romano, and Larry the Cable Guy.

Players are set to tee off at 10:50 a.m. today for the tournament, which will run through Sunday. The event features a record purse of $600,000, which will be donated to charity. The tournament can be viewed on NBC Sports Networks and the NBC Sports App.

Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. Contact him at jscacco@sierrasun.com or 530-550-2643.


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