G.C. of Houston Key Fantasy Stats

Houston Open

October 10th – 13, 2019

Golf Club of Houston (Tournament Course)

Humble, TX

Par: 72 / Yardage: 7,441

Purse: $7.5 million

with $1,350,000 to the winner

Defending Champion:
Ian Poulter

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:

The longtime lead-in to the Masters took last year off due to lack of sponsorship and is now part of the fall stretch of tournaments for the 2020 season. It will return to the Golf Club of Houston’s Tournament course for this year for the final time before shifting to Memorial Park which held the event 14 times between 1947 and 1963.
So for this year, we are basing this on the most important stats for the Golf Club of Houston, based on data from the 2018 Houston Open (wasn’t played in 2019), and using data from all the players in the field with stats from 2020. What we do is take their rank for each stat and then add up the four categories.
The scoring average of the field at G.C. of Houston in 2018 was 70.60 so with par being 72, that means the average score was par and a half under par, making G.C. of Houston the 42nd hardest course to score on in 2018. It’s also important to see how the weather could play a factor, in 2018 weather couldn’t have been better, but in 2017 when conditions were overcast with some showers over the weekend with the wind blowing 10 and 20 mph the course played to a 71.98 average and was 24th hardest on tour. This year it will be hot the first two days with a front going through on Friday dropping temperatures to the mid-70s for the weekend. It will blow 12 mph on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday and be very nice for Sunday. So the significant factor for the players, it will be windy which gives the course some bite.

In looking at the stats for Golf Club of Houston from the last time it was played one thing is apparent, the course is for bombers. In past years most of the players in the top ten were in the top-ten in driving distance stats, but that didn’t happen in 2018 as only 1 of the 13 top-ten players finished in the top-ten. The only way to explain the difference was the weather and since it will be windy I can see long hitters having the advantage again. Look at some of the champions at Golf Club of Houston, J.B. Holmes, Matt Jones, Phil Mickelson hit it long. So those that know how to beat it out there have a significant advantage since accuracy doesn’t come into play. So for our first stat, we pick Strokes Gained from tee-to-Green because this is a good barometer if a player is considered a “bomber.” Last time in his Houston Open win, Ian Poulter who isn’t considered a long driver, more in the middle of the road in distance was 23rd for the week in SG Off-the-Tee and 4th in SG Tee-to-Green. So you can see one of the keys for Poulter’s victory Our second stat is Proximity to the hole because the greens are smooth (44th hardest last time) to hit, but it’s essential to get it close to the pin from the fairway. For the week Golf Club of Houston was T-24th for the year with the players hitting it an average of 34 feet, 11 inches away Poulter was T-4th in Greens hit and 29th in proximity to hole Next is scrambling if you miss the green you have to get it up and down. One of the things that the folks that run this event use to do were get conditions on the course to match those at Augusta National since the course used to be played the week before the Masters. So scrambling is very important in the Houston Open. It ranked 48th on Tour, and Poulter was T-14th showing the importance of getting it up and down from off the green. Last is par breakers because you have to make a lot of birdies and eagles to do well. Last year the course ranked 32nd as Poulter was T-1st in this stat because he made lots of birdies (23) with ranked him T-1st so you can see the importance of this and all of our stats for this week.

*Strokes Gained Tee-to-Green: The per round average of the number of Strokes the player was better or worse than the field average on the same course & event minus the Players Strokes Gained putting value.

*Proximity to Hole: Average length that a player hits from the pin with shots from the fairway.

*Scrambling: So which course is tough to get it up and down on holes players miss the greens. Since all of the area’s around the greens are mowed short, making it a lot like Augusta National it should be easier for players to getting it up and down.

*ParBreakers: The course allows a lot of birdies and eagles to be made, so ParBreakers is important for the players.

The 131 players of the field of 144 that have stats from 2020:

Click any column title in the table header to sort columns.

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