Address: 1125 E. Rio Salado Parkway
Tempe, Arizona 85281
Director of Golf: Daryl Crawford
Head Golf Professional: Joey Jones
Course Architect: Pete Dye
About This Course:
18 Holes of Championship Golf
Managed by OB Sports
Par 70 – 7002 yards from the tips
Rating/Slope: 73.8/131; 70.3/124; 67.4/115; 62.7/103; 76.1/132; 72.8/127; 67.7/115
by Nancy G. Howard, Editor/Publisher Arizona Golfer
with Alice & Danny Scott
One of the most iconic golf courses to inhabit the desert landscape of Phoenix, Arizona is ASU Karsten, celebrating its 25th Birthday in September, 2015. Named after PING founder, Karsten Solheim (the largest contributor of initial funding), it is home to the ASU golf teams. Built in part to attract collegiate recruits, it worked well to launch pros like Phil Mickelson, Billy Mayfair, Grace Park and the late Heather Farr who is beautifully commemorated by a detailed bronze statue.
Designed by Pete Dye, this 7002-yard gem is a short par 70 on the scorecard but long in character. Expertly managed by OB Sports and Director of Golf Daryl Crawford, quality is emphasized throughout the well-maintained grounds and facilities. The Scottish influence carries to the links layout in the shadows of the ASU Stadium with mountain range vistas on many holes and the sounds of the ASU Marching Band in the background during this time of year. The undulating fairways and massive mounds are like ski moguls. Pete’s infamous pot bunkers and waste areas with his signature use of railroad ties producing the bulkhead effect challenge golfers of all levels.
Holes #6, par 3, 209 yards and #7, par 3, 155 yards from tips –These are back to back par 3s that can give you a good chance to birdie and improve your scorecard or take a bite out of it. On #6, center left is your aim to avoid trouble on the right. Trust the yardage, as it is true. Hole #7 is a straightaway with a mounded bunker at left front you’ll want to avoid but trust your swing and yardage and you’ll have a chance at that birdie.
Hole #9, par 4, 446 yards from the tips: – A very long lake splits the fairways between 9 and 18, no doubt a bonanza for diving ball recyclers. On number nine, drive far left and then take the liberal stance of left again on the approach to ensure dryness.
Note: Teammates Michael and David thought Holes #2, #8 and #9 were their favorite challenges on the course. David particularly was commenting on the rough most of the day. It’s some tough grass to get out of, to say the least.
Hole #16, par 3, 248 yards from the tips: – This is just a great par 3, visually and challenging, hitting over water to the right if you go for the green. Most end up in the bunkers on the left to avoid just not enough distance to the green with your tee shot. However, you can be rewarded if you go for it to redeem a birdie. Just love this hole overall.
Hole #18, par 4, 471 yards from the tips: Not much to say about this hole except beward...it’s one challenging finishing hole, for sure. Strategy is the key to score.
The Trophy Room restaurant awards any score with a full bar, dining area, meeting room and a balcony for a gallery view of the course. Players are welcomed into the 21,000 sq. ft. Sun Angel Clubhouse full of everything ASU. Strategically central and perched on the hilltop above the practice facility and PING Learning Center, this boldly contemporary design and the ultra-cool environ may serve as many business folks as golfers. ASU Karsten is a wise and popular choice for many charity and championship tournaments.
Just minutes from the airport, visitors flying in get the birds eye view and may tee off on arrival, before takeoff or both while locals are lucky to be able to frequent this high value course any time to recall or create great golf memories. Once experienced, you know why it is the ‘Home of Champions’.