By Mike McAllister, PGATOUR.COM
DUBLIN, Ohio -- PGA TOUR pros get a look at Muirfield Village every year when the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance comes to town in late May. This week, the U.S. and International teams get a second look at Jack Nicklaus' course this year.
There will be some differences in the course set-up for The Presidents Cup, Nicklaus said Tuesday.
LESS ROUGH: Nicklaus said the rough is usually 2-1/2 inches for the members. This week, it will be 2-1/4 inches. "Obviously that means that the driving of the golf ball is going to be far more aggressive," Nicklaus said. The decision was one that TOUR officials wanted and mentioned to Nicklaus a year ago.
14th HOLE: At the Memorial, this par-4 hole is 363 yards on the scorecard. This week, it's 325 yards. "Probably on a couple of rounds, give them the opportunity to drive the green," Nicklaus said.
16TH HOLE: A new tee was added to the par-3 hole to "give it a little more variety," Nicklaus said. "I think even with some of the tough pin positions, they might even more the tee forward to try to find a little more aggressive shot down near the end of the match.
18TH HOLE: A new tee was built after this year's Memorial. "I didn't build it for The Presidents Cup," Nicklaus said. "I built it because I said I was tired of seeing guys drive over the nine bunkers that we put out there."
Nicklaus said none of the changes were specifically designed for this week's event. But the time of the season will give it a different feel than during the May event.
"We think that the golf course will play faster in the fall, which it usually does," he said. "The weather forecast is actually pretty good, so the golf course should be relatively dry. It will make it harder to keep the ball in the fairway, but the rough is not signature enough, so that's OK.
"This is match play, not medal play. It's an event to have a few birdies and not play defensive golf, but play offensive golf."