Both Universities are well respected, unless you are a fan of one school, then you probably hate the other. I personally don’t care about either school, but there golf courses are another story. I have had the pleasure of playing all four courses. Three of them have very similar backgrounds, and in relation, the fourth is a new upstart.
I have played both Universities main courses in the last year, and I am very surprised to not have a clear favorite. Both courses have positives and negatives that make them very similar to me. Bold and fun greensites? A check for both. Routings that make the best of the properties? Both do well on this, I really don’t like long distances between green and tees and both courses do well on this. As I went through my check list they both keep coming out close.
So I went to there second courses, and this is were it can get more interesting. The Gray is a short course by today’s standards and probably not much use for the University golf teams. But it is a lot of fun for the recreational golfer. While UofM’s is a full bodied course, it just feels slightly off. Not surpringly, it’s designer had said in the past he wished he could build the course over.
As I get older I still prefer to walk, but now I look out a number of years and think if I would still enjoy the walk. I know I would not get bored and would be excited to play both courses at OSU and could handle to walk even on extremely hot and humid days. The two courses at UofM do not hold that same excitement and I know on summers hot and humid days I would not want to be walking up and down those hills.
My victory goes to OSU. But it is exciting to think about how both Universities could make changes to bring these courses back even more to the greatness they hold.