Big G and Wee Neil have been discussing the ‘Greatest Golf Courses’ in the world. Always a debate and a topic in golf magazines, golf channel, on the course and yes in golf blogs. What is the greatest, or more appropriately, the greatest ranked golf courses in the world, country, or any given state and what makes a course the greatest? Design, condition, difficulty, or accessibility?
Magazines like Golf Digest have run numerous articles ranking World’s 100 Greatest, America’s 100 Greatest Public, Top 100 US Golf Courses, (without looking I guessed 8 of top 10 are super private and one listed had to be Pebble Beach), and whatever category they can come up with to fill space. For the record I know I’m just filling space with this blog, but hey you’re still reading.
Without the use of statistics, the greatest of anything is subjective. Even with statistics it still is an opinion; Jack or Tiger? Brady or Montana? Aaron or Bonds? Big G or Wee Neil? My answers to these questions can be discussed later but the answers should be painfully obvious.
Determining which golf courses are the greatest is obvious someone’s subjective opinion. Golf Digest released their biennial 2019-20 ranking of America's 100 Greatest Golf Courses in January 2019 as compiled by their panel of experts. Being the skeptic that I am and doing a little math, this panel of experts must be pretty worn out from traveling the country and playing golf.
To compile a list of 100, I feel they should have at least visited 500 courses just to have a reasonable sample size. That equates to playing golf five times a week over the course of two years and I haven’t even added travel to the mix. Possible but not probable.
Then there are the uber-private courses that don’t want to be known so when asked by Golf Digest “hey, we’re considering your course for our top 100. Can we come and play?” “NO!!!”
Maybe the opposite happens. “Absolutely! We can’t wait to host you. Should we call Wheels Up for you? Do you prefer lobster or steak or both?”
See where I am going with this?
Getting past my skepticism and moving forward let us talk about ‘the greatest’. A Golf Digest panel member made this comment about their Greatest Course in America: ‘Every single shot is a double bogey waiting to happen. The course is brutal unless you can throw it up in the air and hit it a decent distance.’
Every time I am on the tee box it is a double bogey waiting to happen, however does this read like it is a place you want to play?
The only brutal I want with my golf game is the weather on the bucket list trip to Scotland.
Plus, what are the chance any of us would have the opportunity to play on this course or most of the listed courses? In my world, (yes my world is a very unique place), the two biggest criteria that decides what is the greatest golf courses are accessibility and fun factor. The referenced course may be the greatest to some and Golf Digest’s panel, but not to me because I can’t call for a twilight rate and brutal does not equal fun.
The greatest golf course in the world is the one you and your beer guzzling, cart girl chasing, hooking the ball buddies, are currently playing. Make the trip to Pebble and the Wee Course or visit us here in Myrtle Beach and enjoy. Listen to the Boy’s Podcast and their list for guidance and offer your opinion on the greatest golf courses.
Now who out there is a member at Cypress Point or Shinnecock and needs a fourth? I’m available!!!!!!!
p.s. - Jack, Montana, Aaron and Big G. (Wee Neil is in a Senior Qualifier and Big G is on the bag so caddie GOAT defaults to Big G).