Butler National was former tour player George Fazio’s ideal of a championship course, with 10 forced-carries over water in 18 holes. Even before it opened, it was signed to eventually serve as permanent site of the Western Open. Problem was, when it opened, it was the last cool-weather venue on the PGA Tour to utilize bluegrass rather than bent-grass for its fairway, and several prominent golfers declined to play Butler National because of potential flyer-lies from those fairways. Eventually the turf was converted, but then the Shoal Creek scandal occurred. Rather than change its restricted men-only policy, the club relinquished its role of Western Open host after the 1990 event. So why include a club on America’s 100 Greatest that won’t allow female panelists a chance to evaluate it? Because we rank golf courses, not club policies.
100 Greatest: Ranked since 1975. Highest ranking: No. 21, 2007-'08. 2021-'22 ranking: No. 49.
Best in State: Ranked second, 2017-'22. Ranked third, 2015-'16. Ranked fourth, 2011-'14. Ranked inside the top 5, 1977-2010.
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