Here we are, the pinnacle of championship golf. The world’s best have convened at Shinnecock Hills, and we are set for the 118th U.S. Open.
The Skinny on Shinny
A full history of Shinnecock Hills is on our site, but you can find the cliff notes below. The full articles include great visuals of William Flynn’s vision for the course, what has changed at Shinnecock throughout the years, and what makes the course so architecturally sound.
Full versions of Part I and Part II
Link to our Full Fried Egg US Open Coverage
Shinnecock Hills is a special place in the golfing world. Established in 1891, it was one of the USGA’s five founding clubs. The course was originally designed by Willie Dunn but underwent a redesigns by C.B. Macdonald and Seth Raynor in 1917 and again by William Flynn in 1929. It has hosted numerous championships over the last 127 years but hasn’t held a major since the 2004 U.S. Open.
There have been significant changes to the course since the 2004 U.S. Open. The club, USGA and Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw brought back the essence of the original design by widening fairways, introducing more short grass around the greens, adding length, and expanding the green complexes. Fescue grass was also brought back as the primary turf in order to provide the best surface for championship golf.
The updated layout has all the angles and strategy that the designers intended. Plenty of thought will be required in order to gain the best angles and score well. As long as the USGA stays within itself, this will be a proper major championship.
A Brief History of Shinnecock Championships
This will be the fifth U.S. Open held at Shinnecock Hills. The course held the second-ever U.S. Open in 1896 and has since held the 1986, 1995 and 2004 editions. It also held the 1896 U.S. Amateur, 1900 U.S. Women’s Amateur, and the 1977 Walker Cup. In short, it has held some really cool events over the year.
The most recent showing at SHGC was filled with controversy. Rye grass covered the golf course, and the USGA let it get too dry. The ground was nearly frictionless, causing greens to be nearly unputtable.
Retief Goosen and Phil Mickelson provided the main attraction on Sunday. Phil birdied the 15th and 16th holes to tie for the lead, but a double-bogey on 17 would end his bid.
As mentioned before, the grass has been changed to fescue and will be much more manageable for the tournament committee.
Keeping up with Koepka
Oh yeah, the defending champion is Brooks Koepka, should probably mention him. The last player to win back-to-back U.S. Opens was Curtis Strange in 1988 and 1989.
Koepka suffered an injury earlier this year but has since rounded into form. His last three starts have been a T-11, 2nd and T-30. Look for Brooks to get off to a hot start and be in contention for the second year in a row.
With all the top players in the field, there are obviously some really good pairings this week. Here are some that we will be keeping an eye on. Full list of tee times can be found HERE
Rory McIlroy/Jordan Spieth/Phil Mickelson
Bryson DeChambeau/Matthew Fitzpatrick/Matt Kuchar
Hideki Matsuyama/Marc Leishman/Rickie Fowler
Sergio Garcia/Jon Rahm/Rafa Cabrera Bello
Justin Thomas/Dustin Johnson/Tiger Woods
Jason Dufner/Braden Thornberry (a)/Brandt Snedeker
The storylines are slammed, despite the youth movement in the game two 40 somethings dominate the headlines. Tiger Woods heads to Shinnecock 10 years removed from his last major, the 2008 U.S. Open. Phil Mickelson will look to complete the Grand Slam at the site of a near miss in 2004.
It’s a big week for fantasy golf. Paulie has you covered with his favorites, longshots, picks for DraftKings, and one-and-done league insight. Read his article HERE.
Andy also put together a list of five longshots he likes this week.
We have two podcasts on site this week to get your prepared for the U.S. Open.
Our preview pod with Brendan Porath and Sean Martin dives into Shinnecock Hills, the identity of the U.S. Open, and favorites for the week. We also dive into why Sean and Brendan hate Xander Schauffele. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, and the website.
Paulie also joined for a quick podcast on fantasy golf. Andy and Paulie discussed value picks in DraftKings, one-and-done leagues, and who they expect to seriously contend this week. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, and the website.
It’s recommended to get 30 to 60 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity per day. The good news is, walking 18 holes of golf exceeds this. When you walk, hydrate with Greater Than to avoid dehydration and fatigue. The world’s first All-Natural Coconut Water based sports drink has two times the electrolytes, has no added sugars and comes in three great flavors to make you want to play another 18. Use this link to earn 20% on your first purchase, or sign up for a monthly subscription of Greater Than and get a free Fried Egg hat with your subscription.
Sean Zak of Golf.com breaks down the 20 amateurs in the U.S. Open. Full article
The PGA Tour’s Jonathan Wall penned a piece about Corey Pavin’s 1994 win and the absurd Cleveland VAS irons he used.
The LPGA is in Michigan for the Meijer LPGA Classic. Tee Times
Quick video on Garrett Rank, the NHL referee who qualified for the U.S. Open.
Your head looks weird, buy a hat