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Matthew NeSmith of the US reacts during the third round of the Zozo Championship golf tournament at the Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club in Inzai, Chiba prefecture on October 15, 2022.
Matthew NeSmith of the US reacts during the third round of the Zozo Championship golf tournament at the Accordia Golf Narashino Country Club in Inzai, Chiba prefecture on October 15, 2022. Photo by Yuichi Yamazaki via AFP.

Scottie Scheffler leads an intriguing field to Memorial Park Golf Course for the 2022 Cadence Bank Houston Open. Check out our top PGA Tour golf picks and preview for the Houston Open.

Jason Kokrak's departure to the LIV Golf Invitational Series has left the Houston Open title vacant coming into the 2022 tournament. Scheffler, who's ranked No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) and fresh off of a T-3 finish at last week's World Wide Technology Championship, leads a strong but top-heavy field to Houston from Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

The reigning Masters champ won't just be handed Kokrak's title. Sam Burns, Tony Finau, and Hideki Matsuyama are three of the seven golfers from the top 50 of the OWGR also looking for a win this week. Russell Henley is also in the mix after snapping a five-and-a-half-year winless drought with his victory last week.

Here are our top picks and predictions for the 2022 Houston Open based on the odds at our top-rated sportsbooks.

Houston Open Odds

Scottie Scheffler+550+550+600+550+550
Sam Burns+1200+1200+1400+1200+1400
Tony Finau+1600+1600+1800+1700+1400
Aaron Wise+1600+1600+1800+1600+1800
Taylor Montgomery+2000+2700+2500+2700+2200
Maverick McNealy+2000+2200+2500+2600+2200
Hideki Matsuyama+2200+2200+2500+2500+2000
Russell Henley+2500+2200+2500+2200+2500
Jason Day+2500+2200+2800+2500+2500
Denny McCarthy+3500+3700+4000+4000+3500

Houston Open Odds Analysis

Scheffler is a monster consensus favorite. His implied win probability ranges from 14.29% via BetMGM to 15.38% via DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook. Burns and Finau follow suit at all three books, with BetMGM also offering the best value for Finau.

In terms of value plays near the top of the board, Matsuyama stands out. Entering the week 19th in the OWGR, he's fourth in this field by that measure but just seventh by the odds at DraftKings and BetMGM. FanDuel is offering the more conservative number.

Henley won last week's WWT Championship with opening odds as high as +6000 via DraftKings. Bettors should let that serve as a reminder of the value in some of these early-season fields on the fall swing.

Houston Open Picks

Memorial Park GC Profile

Par: 70
Length: 7,412 yards
Greens: Bermuda

This is just the third running of the Houston Open at Memorial Park Golf Course. Only six holes were played below par last year. Kokrak won by two strokes at minus-10 with only five others finishing better than 5-under par.

The easiest hole on the course last fall was the 587-yard, par-5 third at a scoring average of 4.76. Each of the other two par 5s also scored under par but there was a total of just 11 eagles carded during the tournament across seven holes. One of those was the 406-yard, par-4 13th with a scoring average of 3.854 and three eagles.

The par 4s range from 382 to 529 yards. There are three in each range of 400-450, 450-500, and 500-550 yards. Three of the five par 3s are shorter than 200 yards.

The greens at Memorial Park play firm and fast and water is in play on four holes. Trees are positioned to protect the fairways, but don't do enough to dissuade the Tour's longest hitters from using driver at every opportunity.

Houston Open Key Stats

  • Strokes gained: off-the-tee
  • SG: approach
  • SG: around-the-green
  • Bogey avoidance
  • Proximity 200-225 yards

Memorial Park is one of the longest and toughest non-major courses on the PGA Tour's rotation. As such, we'll need to prioritize strokes gained: off-the-tee with a preference for distance over accuracy with the driver. Having narrowed it down to a bombers' course, MPGC then becomes a second-shot golf course. Approaches from 200-225 yards will be most common for all in the field.

Still, it's possible to survive at this venue with a strong short game. Eight of the top-10 leaders in SG: around-the-green last year finished in the top 30 for the tournament.

Course history at Memorial Park is limited with only 13 members of this field having played all four rounds of the Houston Open each of the past two years at this venue. Burns leads that group with an average of 2.33 true total strokes gained on the field per round while recording back-to-back T-7 finishes. Adam Long, Scheffler, Henley, Mackenzie Hughes, and Aaron Wise also rank among the leaders. Matsuyama averaged 3.46 true total strokes gained on the field in a T-2 finish in 2020.

Who Will Win the Houston Open?

Joe Dahmen (+4500)

Dahmen tied for fifth in this event last year while ranking fifth with 1.37 SG: approach per round for the tournament. He brings a similarly strong form with the irons into this week.

The one-time PGA Tour winner enters the week at No. 100 in the OWGR and is coming off a T-3 finish last week. He had two finishes of T-16 or better in his previous three events without a missed cut since the Fortinet Championship to kick off the 2022-23 PGA Tour season.

Dahmen is 16th on Tour this season in bogey avoidance, T-33 in SG: off-the-tee, 37th in SG: approach, 43rd in SG: around-the-green, and 87th in proximity from 200-225 yards.

FanDuel is offering odds of +3700, so be sure to get the better value at DraftKings.

Who Will Win the Houston Open?

Matthew NeSmith (+5000)

NeSmith is making his third appearance at Memorial Park. He missed the cut in 2020 but improved to finish T-46 last year despite losing strokes with his putter. He gained 0.82 strokes around the greens per round.

Ranked 94th in the OWGR coming into this week, NeSmith has three straight top-10 finishes on the fall swing. He tied for ninth at both the Sanderson Farms Championship and against the elite field of the Zozo Championship with a co-runner-up finish at the Shriners Children's Open in between.

Across his last eight measured rounds, NeSmith is gaining strokes off the tee, on approach, around the green, and on the putting surfaces. His 2.23 SG: total over that span lead all golfers in this week's field.

NeSmith with odds around +4000 across the market but he has crept as high as +5000 via BetMGM as of Wednesday morning.

Garrick Higgo (+20000)

With only two full-field events left on the fall swing before we start getting more consistently strong fields in early January, it's a good time to back a long shot.

Higgo is coming off a missed cut at the WWT Championship last week; however, he was third at the Sanderson Farms Championship earlier this fall and T-29 at the Butterfield Bermuda Championship two weeks ago. The South African enters this week at No. 140 in the OWGR, but he's only a year-and-a-half removed from his first PGA Tour win in June 2021 at the Palmetto Championship.

Higgo is making just his first appearance at Memorial Park, but he sets up as a good course fit as a consistently strong putter and a long driver. He's tied for 61st early in this season in proximity on approaches from 200-225 yards and he's 42nd in SG: around-the-green.

FanDuel is offering market-low odds of +14000. The added profit potential makes Higgo a dart worth throwing at DraftKings.

Where to Bet on the PGA Tour

Here are our top-rated sportsbooks:

Houston Open picks made on 11/72022 at 7 p.m. ET.