Share your thoughts on Marion Golf Course Set-up

I was curious to know what other fellow golfers think about the toughness of the course set-up at the U.S. Open. Personally I like the fact that the tour players have to "make shots" and be at the top of their game in "ball striking" to shoot par or better. When I watch them play on courses set up like this it seems appropriate that if they play well they shoot par. If they play excellently they can shoot under par, but not by a lot. I found it exciting to see them fight hard to maintain a level head and have to shake off a bogey then focus on the next hole which is not a lot easier. Great challenge. Something akin to what we face every day - fighting hard to shoot our handicap or a little better on those days where everything goes right (I mean correct).

Darius

My fav was the 266yd par three - yikes.

I was wondering when someone was going to open this can of worms! I almost started a post like this myself. I also like to see tour pros challenged... they have it pretty good sometimes and a tough US Open course can really make them work to produce a good score and win. That is fun to watch.

However, there is a limit to to the degree of difficulty that reduces my enjoyment of it and my respect for the USGA. They definitely crossed the line for me personally.... some of the best players in the world having to hit driver on a par 3???? Or a 530 yard par 4 to finish the round that not a single player gets a birdie on during the weekend??? The winner had to hit three absolutely perfect shots for a tap in par.  If holes are averaging almost a full shot over par then I think the USGA got it wrong. 

Honestly,  I can vent about this for a very long time. These are my opinions and everyone is of course entitled to one... I keep reading about this on other sites to try to find one that makes me change my opinion to a more positive one... unfortunately it hasn't happened yet.

Okay... enough... off to the range to beat on some limited flight Srixons. 

i liked how tough the course played because it showed that even though those guys are some of the best in the world that their good shots were really good and their okay shots still got them penalized so they had to really be on their game

The conditions and set up were in my opinion what is to be expected of the US open, but at the same time, just a little insane.  Lee Westwood told golf channel that a 4 handicap would shoot 95 on that course if he played well, but likely wouldn't break 100.  I agree that it was a great challenge and I think it would be a real eye-opener to everyday golfers (even low handicappers) to see and experience just how tough these conditions are.

I would love to give it a try, I would be interested in seeing if I could break a 100... it would be very humbling if I did not. Rex Hoggard of the Golf Channel got pulled in the media draw on Monday and shot 119. He is a 15 handicap.

I get your point...

To me however, our course has a 430 yard par 4 that is up hill from tee to green so it plays a little longer. I often am hitting driver 3 iron to get there except for those days when I am absolutely on my game when I hit a perfect drive and can come in with a 6 iron. So - I think the 18th was a real good test for them. If they can get there with two great shots (like Justin with his driver 4 iron) then it can be done. We have to remember these guys are hitting the ball a long long long way compared to us mere humans.

With regards to the 266 yard par 3, I am watching the Travelers today, and just saw a recap of Bubba hitting a 3 wood on a 280 yard par 4 leaving himself an eagle putt. Another player hit 3 wood and went through the green.

Length is not the issue for these guys. If anything was truly penal it was the rough placing a huge incentive to keep hitting fairways.

I keep thinking of Mike Weir shooting 69 on Sunday at the U.S. Open, so it proves to me that even someone who is still working on trying to get his game back on track could score well at Marion under tough conditions.

More musings...

It is nice that we can all have different opinions - that's what makes for a good conversation !

Darius

Darius,

Awesome way to put it. Agreed a lot with what you had to say. Awesome how we can have different opinions, that's what makes these chats possible. My thought process on the set-up of the U.S Open was that it was very fair. The U.S Open is the national championship, and so be it if it beats them up out there. I think one week out of the whole year it's nice to see them play in the most difficult of course set-ups. The tour players enjoy the test, if they didnt they wouldn't want to come back. But they do, even if they shoot high, and really anyone can go high..... The course had some long difficult holes and acetal short holes. So length was an issue in some cases, But overall a short straight ball hitter could play well also. Those are my thought, anyways hope everyone is practicing well. Better not be anyone using range balls to practice there shortgame! 

- J

Great topic... tough questions though because of individual preference.  I don't have an issue with how the course played per se but I think they weren't planning on having it as soft as it was.  For me have the rough as high as you want and the fairway as narrow as you want as well... keep the greens firm but having a 530 yrd par 4 and par 3's over 250 yards is a little ridiculous.  It is a par 3 intended to test your "2nd" shot to the green, not a driver and see who can hold it on.  Also I like there to be a little drama at the end where a birdie and not a bogie can win a tournament. On the same hand though you play the course and what it will give you so I guess it balances out as they were hitting a bunch of irons off the tee on the shorter holes.  Overall though enjoyable to watch and it goes to show that you don't need 7600 yrd courses to challenge the world's best.

 

Sean

I don't believe that many of the tour players enjoyed Merion as a 'test of golf'. There were some outright negative comments.

There were many other comments that definitely had negative undertones. They didn't seem to impressed with USGA's course manipulation. I think facial expressions, body language and actions also show a lot of unhappy players as well.

Like I said, I want to see the positive side of this but I think only one player was happy after the tournament ended.

P.S. I only practice my short game with ProV1x's. Always make sure there is at least one sleeve in the bag.