Cadence Bank Houston Open Preview

Houston seems to be a busy place in the sporting world recently. It will easily provide the toughest test of golf in the fall portion of the 2022-23 schedule at Memorial Park.

Looks peaceful! The course is not. Play well my friends!

Cadence Bank Houston Open

Memorial Park Golf Course

Houston, Texas

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Memorial Park Golf Course

Yards (per official scorecard):7,412
Par:70 (35-35)
Greens:7,000 square feet; MiniVerde Bermuda.
Stimpmeter:Approaching 12 feet.
Rough:419 Bermuda; close to 2.5 inches.
Bunkers/Water Hazards/Holes in Play19/2/4
Architects:John Bredemus (1936); Tom Doak (2019).
Course Record (TOUR):62; Scottie Scheffler, Round 2, 2021.
Course Tournament Scoring Record:267 (-13); Carlos Ortiz (not entered) 2020.
Facts of the Week:Third event at Memorial Park.
Purse:$8.4 million; $1.512 million winner.

Notes:

  • Field of 132
  • 72 hole stroke play, top 65 and ties play the final two rounds.
  • Non-traditional Par-70 with five Par-3 holes and three Par-5 holes.
  • Front plays easier than the back.

Recent Winners

Italics – not entered this week

YearWinnerNotes
2021Jason Kokrak (-10)Closed 66-65 to steal it on Sunday from Scottie Scheffler.
2020Carlos Ortiz (-13)Closed with 65 to overcome a one shot deficit after 54 holes.
 
 
 

The fall fun of birdie fests will take a back seat this week. Memorial Park, muni or not, will put up a very real challenge tee to green this week. Fairways aren’t easy to hit so controlling the ball out of the dried out Bermuda rough will be the next challenge. Thankfully the putting surfaces here aren’t completely ridiculous or even par would have a chance at winning.

Better give it a knock from the tee box and have steady hands on and around the greens!

This Week – Cadence Bank Houston Open

Scottie Scheffler (+550): I don’t think anyone will argue he’s the favorite this week but for that price it’s hard to get involved. Monster finish at Mayakoba combined with his 54 hole lead here last year (plus course record) suggests he’s the man to beat. Hasn’t won since the Masters if you’re wondering.

Sam Burns (+1200): Won at Colonial in his last visit to the Lone Star state on a course that also isn’t a pushover. Love him on Bermuda and in this part of the world. A pair of T7 paydays here suggests he likes it as well. Bet.

Aaron Wise (+1600): Seems like he’s in this part of the column weekly! Only non top 15 finish in his last five was in his backyard in Las Vegas so go figure. The others have been either T15 or T6. Another top 10 wouldn’t be surprising this week.

Tony Finau (+1800): Rust bust last week in Mayakoba but with the Presidents Cup and two wins behind him since the 4th of July, not sure what the motivation is this week.

Jason Day (+2200): Anytime my Aussie buddy/boss Ben Everill gets on the JDAY TRAIN, look out! I’ll have a nibble just to tell him I was listening! Makes sense as he hits it a mile and will putt the dimples off.

Hideki Matsuyama (+2200): Debut event at Memorial Park was T3 with a 63. Back again two years later tells me what I need to know.

Russell Henley (+2200): Last win before last week was in Houston but not at Memorial Park five years ago. I’ll let him enjoy the return to the winner’s circle.

Maverick McNealy (+2500): T18 or better in four straight but nothing inside T10. Doesn’t hit as many GIR as he would like but big ones this week plus being a super putter has my attention again.

Eyes On

Players NOT LISTED in previous articles this week

Joel Dahmen (+4000): T3 last week T5 last year. Converging.

Si Woo Kim (+5000): Bermuda, yes.

Davis Thompson (+7500): No value but interesting.

Dylan Frittelli (+15000): Wind won’t bother him.

Longer Shots/Funny Money

Ryan Palmer (+17500): Top 20.

MJ Daffue (+17500): Sneaky tee to green.

David Lingmerth (+20000):  Rolls in T11, T8 last two weeks. Heat at 200-1.

Brent Grant (+40000): Ball-Striking machine.

Cole Hammer (+75000): Didn’t get it done at KFT Q-School. Should be relishing this chance.

Last Week – World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba

Scottie Scheffler (+900): Hey, look who’s grinding to get back to No. 1 in the world! Nothing like proper motivation for a fall event. Third visit suggests he’s comfortable here (4th, T18). Don’t have to worry about rust remediation as he took care of that at Congaree.  Should factor Statistically Speaking! Blazed home with 62, co-low round of the week, on Sunday for T3.

Viktor Hovland (+1100):  NOT the favorite? Ok! Probably not likely that he wins for the third consecutive year but hardly impossible with his skill set. Played in Japan and at Congaree with nothing worse than 71 so he’s hardly limping in this week. T10 with four rounds in the 60s so he’s figured it out here to say the least.

Collin Morikawa (+1600): More MC than top 10s in his last nine worldwide. Will need a hot putter to keep up this week. I don’t see this number as value in any way. First time at the event as well. New putting coach! Still T63 Putting. Sad face. T1 GIR and T2 Fairways. We know what the issue is!

Tony Finau (+1800): Back from a well-deserved break from TOUR action, it’s a soft landing spot for the big hitter. Tough week to knock any rust off though as 20-under will be the target. If you believe in the “every-other-year” theory, he’ll contend. 3-under isn’t enough here, MC.

Billy Horschel (+1800): Closed with 66 at Congaree for T7 so that should have eyes on him. Course Horse who is playing his fifth consecutive season here doesn’t hurt either. T56 with four rounds of par or better.

Aaron Wise (+1800): Like Horschel, playing well, 6th at Congaree, and plays well here (32-under last two; T15-2nd).  Plenty of GIR and birdies, makes sense. T15 with a round of 71, just like Morikawa. Par is a killer in this event.

Eyes On

Players NOT LISTED in previous articles this week

Keith Mitchell (+5500): Lotsa birdies, good recipe this week. NOT. EVEN. CLOSE. BUD. MC.

Patrick Rodgers (+6600): Guess his podium last week didn’t inspire. T27.

Harris English (+7000): I know, I know, I wrote about him already but 70-1 seems a bit steep here. T32.

Davis Riley (+9000): Solo fifth the last time he was in Mexico on a Norman design. Closed with 66 at Congaree LTO. 4 rounds in the 60s for T21. Go LOWER.

Mark Hubbard (+9000):  He’ll be passed over because of MC last week. He was five under. MC on the number.

Longer Shots/Funny Money

Kevin Yu (+11000): Tee to green machine coming off T3. 75-67 MC.

Garrick Higgo (+12500): Closed 64 last Sunday for the low round of the day. 69-73 MC.

David Lipsky (+14000): Only two top 10s in 2022 are on Paspalum. MAKE IT THREE TOP 10s 2022! T10.

Chez Reavie (+16000): T33 or better in 5 of last 6. WD.

Jason Dufner (+60000): Never MC here. 73-66 and now he has. MC.

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