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Course Review: Seven Oaks at Colgate University
28 Apr 2015
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The Seven Oaks Golf Course is designed<br /> by the legendary Robert Trent Jones, Sr.
The Seven Oaks Golf Course is designed
by the legendary Robert Trent Jones, Sr.
by Alan Alsheimer, Jr. - AmateurGolf.com Player Staff

Named for the ancestral home of the Colgate family, Seven Oaks is nestled on the Colgate University campus in Hamilton New York (named after Alexander Hamilton). It is consistently rated as a Top Public Course in New York State by Golfweek and Golf Magazine, and as a Top 10 “Most Impressive” NCAA campus golf course.

Designed by Robert Trent Jones, Sr. in 1934, the idea for the course was driven by Gene Sarazen’s vision to create an “Augusta of the North”. Seven Oaks has hosted numerous elite events including the 1977 NCAA Championship won by Curtis Strange and an Inaugural Ben Hogan Tour event: The Central New York Classic, in 1990.

It has hosted many US Open qualifiers, US Amateur Qualifiers and NYS State Amateur Championships. A 7000-yard, par-72 layout, it requires precise execution and accurate placement of the ball. The greens are large, fast and receptive. However, if your approach angles aren’t correct, the pins can easily become impossible to attack.

Growing up playing the course regularly, and having won events on this course, it is a fun-filled challenge that requires the strategy and thinking of a competitive chess match. There aren’t any “easy” holes to make up ground, and in fact, to this day, the competitive course record stands at (-7 under) 65, a number well supported by its 74.6 course rating and slope of 143. That should say enough right there given the high level of talent that has walked the fairways of Seven Oaks over its 80 years.

Best of all, it’s very close to Syracuse, just a 25-minute drive, and even closer to the Turning Stone Resort in Central NY. With tee times available to the Public, and 18-hole rates Monday through Thursday of $35 ($85 on weekends), I have yet to play a course that offers more for the money, and I’d be hard pressed to believe one even exists.

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