The Professional Golfers Association of America was formed in February 1916, one month after wealthy store owner Rodman Wanamaker (the man the giant trophy played for this week is named after) had hosted a lunch meeting with the leading professionals of the age to set out the agenda for the formal organisation of the PGA.
In the October of 1916, the very first US PGA Championship was staged, in match play format. There was no tournament in 1917 or 1918 because of the First World War and the Second World War put paid to the 1943 renewal so this is the 104th edition.
Previously staged in August, as the PGA Tour season drew to a close, and after the other three majors had all been played, the US PGA Championship was very much viewed as the least prestigious of the four majors and the inception of the mega-money FedEx Cup Series in 2007 took a little more sheen off.
In order to give the Championship the gravitas it deserved, a change to the PGA Tour schedule in 2019 moved it to May and it became the second major of the year.
It was shuffled back to August again in 2020 because of the pandemic, when it was the first of only three majors played (the Open Championship was cancelled altogether), but, as was the case last year when Phil Mickelson caused an almighty shock at Kiawah Island, we're back in it's now usual May slot.
Southern Hills, Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Par 70, 7,546 yards
We're in for a real treat here, this year's venue is a terrific course and it's going to present a fantastic challenge.
The 1936 Perry Maxwell-designed Southern Hills was the venue for the US Open in 1958, 1977 and 2001, it hosted this event in 1970, 1982, 1994 and 2007, and following a Gill Hanse renovation in 2019, it also staged the Senior PGA Championship last year.
Hanse's renovation included the removal of numerous trees to open out the course, the rebuilding of all 18 greens, as well as every bunker, returning them to something very close to their original Maxwell design.
Fairway bunkers were repositioned and most of the holes were lengthened. Drainage creeks that were formerly underground have been reintroduced, including one that comes into play on holes 10, 11 and 17. Water is in play on 15 of the 18 holes.
The undulating Bermuda grass fairways are generous but uneven lies will be common so playing into the smaller than average Bentgrass greens will be no picnic.
For more on the course, and the Hanse renovation in-particular, please see this excellent piece here and I've looked at how it may play in more detail below.
Live on Sky Sports all four days, starting at 13:00 on Thursday.
Last Ten USPGA Championship Winners with Approximate Pre-event Exchange odds
2021 - Phil Mickelson -6 540.0539/1
2020 - Collin Morikawa -13 36.035/1
2019 - Brooks Koepka -8 12.011/1
2018 - Brooks Koepka -16 23.022/1
2017 - Justin Thomas -8 50.049/1
2016 - Jimmy Walker -14 220.0219/1
2015 - Jason Day -20 16.015/1
2014 - Rory McIlroy -16 6.86/1
2013 - Jason Dufner - 10 46.045/1
2012 - Rory McIlroy -13 23.022/1
Will the bombers prevail again?
The US PGA Championship is a nomadic event so we can't look too deeply into historic stats, but the courses are set-up similarly and they're usually long.
Collin Morikawa hit more fairways than anyone else when he won at Harding Park in 2020 and he only ranked 40th for Driving Distance but big hitters won the previous six US PGA Championships and last year's winner, Phil Mickelson, ranked 15th for Driving Distance.
Given how long Southern Hills is now, it's hard to imagine that length off the tee won't be a factor again this year. Both the par fives are lengthy, measuring 640 and 670 yards so very few will reach either in two although Retief Goosen, who won his first US Open here believes the big hitters will enjoy the venue post renovation.
"The course is made for the bombers. They made the fairways really wide so the long hitters are going to love it."
Goosen ranked first for Driving Distance when finishing third here last year in the Senior PGA Championship but the winner, Alex Cejka, only ranked 28th and KJ Choi finished alongside Goosen despite only ranking 41st so there's definitely more to Southern Hills than just it's length.
Do bear in mind that the stats below from the last three majors played at Southern Hills are pre- and post- the Hanse renovation but they should be of some use.
2021 Senior PGA Championship
1st Alex Cejka -8 DD 28th, DA 34th, GIR 4th, SC 14th, PA 4th
2nd Tim Petrovic -4 DD 10th, DA 15th, GIR 9th, SC 32nd, PA 10th
T3rd K.J Choi -3 DD 41st, DA 29th, GIR 9th, SC 13th, PA 15th
T3rd Retief Goosen -3 DD 1st, DA 29th, GIR 13th, SC 16th, PA 5th
T5th John Riegger -1 DD 38th, DA 6th, GIR 3rd, SC 18th, PA 39th
T5th Bob Sowards -1 DD 34th, DA 44th, GIR 20th, SC 12th, PA 2nd
T5th Mike Weir -1 DD 29th, DA 67th, GIR 39th, SC 29th, PA 1st
2007 US PGA Championship
1st Tiger Woods -8 DD 14th, DA 9h, GIR 4th, SC 14th, PA 4th
2nd Woody Austin -6 DD 55th, DA 43rd, GIR 22nd, SC 1st, PA 28th
3rd Ernie Els -5 DD 3rd, DA 57th, GIR 54th, SC 7th, PA 1st
T4th Aaron Oberholser -1 DD 30th, DA 22nd, GIR 4th, SC 5th, PA 47th
T4th John Sendon -1 DD 18th, DA 22nd, GIR 2nd, SC 43rd, PA 27th
2001 US Open
1st Retief Goosen -4 DD 17th, DA 15h, GIR 4th, SC 5th, PA 24th
2nd Mark Brooks -4 DD 73rd, DA 3rd, GIR 1st, SC 1st, PA 57th
3rd Stewart Cink -3 DD 6th, DA 77th, GIR 17th, SC 2nd, PA 2nd
4th Rocco Mediate -2 DD 33rd, DA 56th, GIR 17th, SC 7th, PA 16th
T5th Paul Azinger +1 DD 13th, DA 33rd, GIR 11th, SC 6th, PA 50th
T5th Tom Kite +1 DD 60th, DA 21st, GIR 17th, SC 12th, PA 22nd
DD = Driving Distance
DA = Driving Accuracy
GIR = Greens In Regulation
SC = Scrambling
PA = Putting Average
Super scramblers set to shine at Southern Hills
Hanse has been responsible for a number of renovations but given his modus operandi is to restore venues to something close to their original ethos, I'm not convinced form at any of them will help us much but for the record, he's recently worked on Winged Foot, before Bryson DeChambeau won the US Open there in 2020, TPC Boston, which hosted the now defunct Dell Technologies Championship and the 2020 Northern Trust, Ridgewood Country Club (Northern Trust 2010, 2014 and 2018), Plainfield Country Club (2011 and 2015 Barclays) and Aronimink Golf Club, which hosted the 2019 BMW Championship.
Hanse also designed the unique Olympic Golf Course in Brazil where Justin Rose claimed the gold medal in 2016 and the Castle Stuart Golf Links which hosted the Scottish Open between 2011 and 2013 and again in 2016.
Scanning through the relevant leaderboards for the courses above may pay dividends but we're probably better off concentrating on the test in hand and everything points to the importance of approach play, scrambling and even bunker play.
Although the fairways are described as generous, on many holes, the players are going to need to hit the correct side of them in order to play safely into the smaller than average greens.
According to the PGA Director of Golf at Southern Hills, Cary Cozby, post renovation, the greens are around 15% percent larger but they play about 10% smaller than the old greens because of the new edges and roll-offs.
It's worth highlighting that the original designer, Maxwell, also worked on the Augusta's greens and a comparison can been made between the two courses.
Following Hanse's handy work, the perched up putting surfaces are hard to hold with shaved runoff areas and no rough. The greens are slopy, heavily protected by sand and very well described here by Bernhard Langer.
"The greens are extremely severe, a lot of slope, a lot of very tight pin positions, which means you're going to have some long putts, which can lead to three-putt. The other thing about the greens is they have a lot of false fronts and false sides where the ball just runs off.
"All of a sudden that green becomes very small. And then within that small green there's lots of humps and hollows which makes it pretty challenging. If you do miss it and it runs off, you're chipping into the grain, which is a tougher chip than when the grass grows with you."
The last three major winners here have all ranked fourth for Greens In Regulations and unsurprisingly given Bernhard's description, Scrambling has also been a key stat.
Wind almost certain to be a factor
It's early days but unsurprisingly, wind is forecasted to be a factor throughout the week so in addition to having a great tee-to-green game and sensational short game, an ability to handle windy conditions could also be key.
Is There an Angle In?
As highlighted earlier, the Championship has moved around a bit in the calendar over the last few years but a previous win earlier in the season has been a very strong pointer historically with as many as 18 of the last 22 winners having already won an event prior to success in the US PGA Championship.
It's not especially incredible that a major should be won by someone that had already tasted success earlier in the season, especially when it used to feature towards the end of the season, but it's worth highlighting that the list of 18 includes some very unlikely US PGA winners, with the likes of Y.E.Yang, Rich Beem, David Toms and Keegan Bradley all winning a tournament earlier in the season before they won what was then the final major of the year.
Is There an Identikit Winner?
This used to be a great Championship for big outsiders and the three winners between 2001 and 2003 - David Toms, Rich Beem and Shaun Micheel - went off at huge prices. They were very hard to pick and had either Chris DiMarco or Justin Leonard won the 2004 playoff at Whistling Straits instead of Vijay Singh, the run of triple-figure priced winners would have stretched to four.
The 2009 champ, Y.E Yang, went off at around 330.0329/1, Keegan Bradley was matched at a whopping 650.0649/1 before the off 11 years ago, the 2016 winner, Jimmy Walker, was matched at a juicy 220.0219/1, and Mickelson was a massive 540.0539/1 chance 12 months ago, but six of the last ten winners (Collin Morikawa, Brooks Koepka twice, Rory McIlroy twice and Jason Day) were all easy enough to find so it's been a mixed bag of late.
Whether we get an outsider or not, the chances are they'll be a first-time major winner that's inside the world's top-50...
Following Scottie Scheffler's victory in the US Masters in April, 18 of the last 26 majors have now gone to a first-time major winner and 39 of the last 40 majors have gone to someone inside the top-50.
Since Bradley's win in this Championship 11 years ago, last year's shock winner, Lefty, is the only major champion that wasn't inside the world's top-50.
Looking at this event alone, 22 of the last 36 winners (61%) were breaking their major duck when they won and that's quite an impressive number given Mickelson's surprise second success last year, that Brooks Koepka has won two of the last four US PGAs (his third and fourth major wins) and that Tiger Woods has won five of the last 36.
And finally, as Dave Tindall highlights in his 10-year trends piece, seven of the last ten winners have been in their 20s so this is the major where the young guns shine. And given the 2010 winner, Martin Kaymer, and the 2011 winner, Keegan Bradley, were both 25 when they won this, it's actually nine of the last 12 winners that have been in their 20s.
We don't have much to go on at all but what evidence we do have suggests this isn't going to be an easy place to play catch up.
Tom Lehman won the Tour Championship wire-to-wire at Southern Hills in 1996, Retief Goosen led after every round when he won the US Open in a playoff here in 2001 and Alex Cjeka, having led the Senior PGA Championship after round one last year, began rounds three and four in second place.
The man Goosen beat in extra time - Mark Brooks - shot 64 in round two to draw alongside Goosen at halfway, having been six back and tied for 26th and Tiger Woods was never headed in this event back in 2007 after a second round 63 saw him go from tied 23rd and six adrift to two clear at halfway.
Having won his first major at Augusta in April, world number one, Scottie Scheffler, is bidding to emulate Jordan Spieth, who won his second major, the US Open at Chambers Bay in 2015, in his next major start having won the US Masters.
Scheffler currently sits tied for 20th at the halfway stage of the AT&T Byron Nelson Championship but that's after a triple-bogey seven at the 13th in round two so he may yet get involved over the weekend and his price will shorten if he does.
Scheffler has won four of his last six individual events and he's a very worthy favourite, but can he keep the hot streak going?
Jon Rahm is also looking to win his second major championship, having won the US Open at Torrey Pines last year.
The Spaniard was starting to be a bit frustrating to follow with a serious of near misses following that major success, but he finally won again last time out at the Mexico Open two weeks ago and his exceptional tee-to-green game should see him take to Southern Hills.
It's now eight years since Rory McIlroy won his third and fourth major championships back-to-back. He won his second US PGA Championship at Valhalla, just a few months after wining the Open Championship at Hoylake and he arrives in Oklahoma in fine fettle having finished second at the US Masters and fifth at the Wells Fargo Championship.
Like Rahm, McIlroy isn't playing in the AT&T Byron Nelson Championship but the next man in the market - Jordan Spieth - is and he's playing nicely again.
Spieth is currently tied for sixth with two rounds to go in his home state of Texas and he's bidding to win back-to-back PGA Tour titles, having won The Heritage last time out.
Spieth is another who's price will shorten up if wins this week and his short game wizardry should reap rewards at Southern Hills but the US PGA Championship is the one Spieth needs to complete the Grand Slam of majors, so he'll feel more pressure than most if he's in-the-mix next week.
The Sportsbook are now paying a whopping ten places for anyone that wants to play each-way at the US PGA Championship, but I've already backed my two on the exchange and first up is the world number four, Cameron Smith.
Smith is an exceptional putter, but he doesn't have any real weaknesses at present and given he's 28 and in search of his first major, he's a great fit stats-wise too.
In search of his third victory of the year, having won the Sentry Tournament of Champions and the Players Championship, Smith looks destined for major championship success sooner rather than later and this venue looks perfect for him.
He's ranked inside the top-ten for Greens In Regulation more often than not this year, he's a terrific scrambler and he won't mind a jot how hard the wind blows. I thought 28.027/1 on the exchange was a cracking price.
Looking at the green complexes at Southern Hills, and seeing how much imagination is going to be required to save par when greens are inevitably missed, one man came to mind immediately - the 2019 Open Champion, Shane Lowry.
Lowry hasn't won this year yet but he's been close on several occasions, finishing second at the Honda Classic and third at both the US Masters and The Heritage, and he looks the perfect fit for the venue.
Lowry isn't the longest of the tee, although he averages almost 300 yards so he's no slouch, but it's on and around the greens that the Irishman shines.
Daniel Berger, who's an industry-wide best price of 66/1 with the Sportsbook, is the only man with a better Sand Save % than Lowry and the Irishman ranks first for Scrambling on the PGA Tour.
Lowry ranks a respectable 41st for Greens In Regulation and a very solid 16th for Strokes Gained Putting on the PGA Tour and at a juicy price of 50.049/1 on the exchange, he's a cracking bet.
Cameron Smith @ 28.027/1
Shane Lowry @ 50.049/1
I may yet add another pick or two before the off and I'll update the preview and tweet it out again if I do and I'll be back on Tuesday or Wednesday with the Find Me a 100 Winner column and a look at the side markets.
*You can follow me on Twitter @SteveThePunter