Erin Hills in Wisconsin is set to host its very first US Open this week — and some of the players think the golf course is set up awfully tough. Sure the US Open is renowned as the sternest test of all golf tournaments, with par being a score that will usually keep a player in the hunt. (The other Majors are far more welcoming to red numbers.) The US Open greens will be tough as ever, but the Erin Hills’ setup has extremely long fescue designed to be particularly penal for golfers who stray from the fairway.
The Erin Hills fairways are unusually capacious for a US Open, but you don’t have to miss by much to be in the very long stuff searching for a ball you may not find. As Kevin Na says: “Erin Hills is a great design course but the fescue is almost unplayable.” For those golfers who get stuck there, it’ll help to remember the enduring quote from Sandy Tatum, who ran the U.S. Open committee back in 1974, when Winged Foot was so difficult the results were called the “massacre at Winged Foot.” Tatum simply said: “We’re not trying to embarrass the best players in the world. We’re trying to identify them.”