January 4, 2017

The Honors Course

Ooltewah, Tenn. / 7,450 yards, Par 72 / Points: 63.6556
The Honors course hole 8
Courtesy of Dan Reynolds

32. The Honors Course

Pete Dye (1983)/Pete Dye (R. 1988, 1999, 2008)

Considered radical in the early 1980s because of its acres of tall, native-grass rough, durable Zoysiagrass fairways and terrifying greens perched atop bulkheads of rock, today The Honors Course is considered a well-preserved example of Pete Dye's death-or-glory architecture. Other than reducing the contours in a couple of greens (particularly the 18th) in the late 1990s, and adjusting the bunkering in 2008, Dye has left the course alone. Georgia architect Bill Bergin did create a new practice facility at the club in 2015.

100 Greatest History: Ranked since 1987. Highest ranking: No. 21, 1987-88. Previous ranking: No. 31


Panelist comments:
“The slick, severely-sloped greens -- with multiple tiers providing ample hole locations -- combined with the demanding tee shots framed by at least one water hazard (7, 8, 15, 16) render the course very challenging for golfers of all abilities."

“Some of Pete Dye's most interesting, well-done bunkers and green complexes. He's known for his "Dye-abolical" green complexes, but I found these greens to be fair and quite varied in shape and size. For the most part, you're rewarded for making a precise shot."

“A gently rolling piece of land where all the fairways move just enough to provide an interesting array of shots but don't make walking difficult.”

"The club's tranquil setting and lovely ambience (in part driven by its championship history and openness to amateur golf) render a round at The Honors Course a very pleasant and memorable experience."

"A terrific walk in the park -- one of the Southeast's gems.”


Courtesy of Dan Reynolds

Hole No. 2

Courtesy of Dan Reynolds

Hole No. 8

Courtesy of Dan Reynolds

Hole No. 9

Courtesy of Dan Reynolds

Hole No. 16

Hole No. 15