1 / 10
One of the top players of the 1980s, Curtis Strange had led the PGA Tour money list in 1985 and ’87, but his best was yet to come. In 1988 he became the first player to top $1 million in official single-season earnings and would win the first of his landmark back-to-back U.S. Open titles. His first win in 1988 was the Independent Insurance Agent Open, his third Houston title. Needing a birdie on the 72nd hole to force a playoff with Greg Norman, he laced a 4-iron to 4 feet and made the putt.
2 / 10
A Texas tournament couldn’t ask for much more than a close finish between favorite sons Byron Nelson and Ben Hogan, and that’s what the inaugural Houston Open got in 1946. Nelson, in his final year as a regular on the PGA Tour, edged Hogan by two shots at River Oaks Country Club. It was Nelson’s 49th win and, though he was only 34, he was already headed into retirement. Hogan, just six months younger, had 21 wins going into 1946; he would win 13 times that year on his way to a 64-win career.
3 / 10
The University of Houston has historically been one of the best college golf programs in the country. But until 2003, no former Cougar had ever won the hometown PGA Tour event. Fred Couples ended that drought in 2003 at the unlikely age of 44. After his first win in five years, he broke down in tears during the TV interview.
4 / 10
Arnold Palmer was a three-time winner on Tour when he teed off in the 1957 Houston Open, but Doug Ford was the bigger star. In 1955 Ford had won the PGA Championship, been named PGA Player of the Year and made the first of his four Ryder Cup appearances. Palmer, however, shot 9-under 279 to nip Ford by one stroke. Ford was hardly deterred, though. He went on to capture the 1957 Masters, and a year later, as defending champion, he helped 1958 champ Palmer put on his first green jacket (pictured).
5 / 10
Stuart Appleby’s first wife, Renay, was killed in an automobile accident in London in the summer of 1998. Appleby returned to the course at that year’s PGA Championship, agreeing to an interview session to get all the painful questions out of the way. Or so he thought. They resurfaced when he won an event in Australia that December, and again when he won the 1999 Shell Houston Open. By then, he was more comfortable talking about his late wife.”Renay was always telling me that I had to stay positive and keep practicing,” he said. “I had to try to be Renay and talk to myself about what I had to do to win.”
6 / 10
David Duval was on the way to establishing himself as the world’s No. 1-ranked golfer when he won the 1998 Shell Houston Open. Duval had won three times in late 1997, including the Tour Championship, and had won in Tucson in February 1998. In Houston, he closed with a 64 to edge local favorite Jeff Maggert, who had grown up near Houston and still lived in the area. Duval ended up leading the money list in 1998 and ascending to the No.1 ranking the following year.
7 / 10
Payne Stewart earned his first PGA Tour win in four years beating Scott Hoch in a playoff. Hoch led by six shots with seven holes to play, but collapsed with three bogeys and a double bogey coming in. Stewart, who had been winless since the 1991 U.S. Open, made a 16-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole, then won the playoff with a par on the first extra hole. A 71st-hole bogey caused future Golf Channel personality Charlie Rymer, then a PGA Tour rookie, to miss the playoff by a stroke.
8 / 10
Most golf fans know about Roberto De Vicenzo’s scorecard gaffe that cost him a spot in a Masters playoff. But consider yourself a golf expert (or a De Vicenzo superfan) if you also know that the Argentine won the Houston Champions International by one stroke over Lee Trevino just a month later. “Before I sign, I call my lawyer,” De Vicenzo joked afterward, but he was taking no chances. He had tournament director Jack Tuthill go over his scorecard.
9 / 10
Bobby Locke had already won more than a dozen times in his native South Africa when he hosted Sam Snead for a series of exhibition matches. Locke won 12 of the 16 matches, and Snead persuaded him to come to the U.S. and play the PGA Tour. Locke would go on to win 11 times in just 59 events on the U.S. tour. His first title was the 1947 Houston Open, which he won by five shots. Footnote: the co-runner-up was Ellsworth Vines, a former world No. 1 tennis player who later became a golf pro.
10 / 10
When Anthony Kim beat Vaughn Taylor in a playoff in the 2010 Shell Houston Open, it appeared that Kim had an unlimited future. Just 24 at the time, Kim already had won three times on Tour, been part of the 2008 U.S. winning Ryder Cup team (beating Sergio Garcia, 5 and 4 in singles) and risen to as high as No. 6 in the world rankings. But injuries would curtail Kim’s career, and he virtually disappeared from the golf radar.
Images from the European players and their wives and girlfriends at the 43rd Ryder Cup gala.
Image of Bryson DeChambeau and how his body has transformed, through the years, from an NCAA champion to becoming a multiple PGA Tour winner.
Here's a look at some of the best photos of the Match II with Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning, Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady from Medalist Golf Club.