Memorial Park Redo Earns Raves, But Will It Draw A Decent Field?

It’s been swell to read all of the positive reviews this week of Tom Doak and Brooks Koepka’s renovation of Memorial Park, host to next year’s Houston Open.

But as Brentley Romine writes, a fall date on the PGA Tour is not an easy sell to players. Will the rejuvenation of a muni make a difference next year?

In a world where many pro events are contested on private or expensive courses, the addition of Memorial Park to the Tour equation in Houston is a breath of fresh air.

“One week out of the year the PGA Tour is going to play an amazing golf course that was actually built for them, built with them in mind, but with the different teeing areas, for the other 51 weeks out of the year, the citizens of Houston are going to be able to play a world-class golf course for a reasonable amount of money,” Harmon said.

“… The city is going to love it. Everybody’s going to want to play there.”

But will the Tour’s stars? This year’s Houston Open field marks the weakest non-opposite-field event in nearly five years, according to the Official World Golf Ranking, which rates the strength of field a 73.

Either way, the story of a public course rejuvenation is always more important to golf than the coming and goings of PGA Tour players who, uh, come and go like ships in the night. So either way, 2020 at Memorial Park should be special.

Butch Harmon posted some nice images of next year’s venue on Instagram: