Experts’ Picks and Predictions for the third major of 2023, the 123rd U.S. Open at Los Angeles Country Club.
America’s national championship returns to the West Coast of the country for a third time in the last five years, and to Los Angeles Country Club, site of the 123rd Open, for the very first time.
As the landscape of the sport continues to radically shift back and forth, one thing remains constant, the four biggest events in golf and what it means to claim one of these prestigious titles.
While Tiger Woods and Will Zalatoris will be missed this week on the course, there is no shortage of golfing superstars in attendance in ‘La-La Land’ this week. Amongst them, defending champion Matt Fitzpatrick returns to defend his title after he produced one of the most memorable shots in major championship history en route to claiming last year’s U.S. Open at Brookline.
The Englishman will attempt to become just the eighth player in U.S. Open history to win back-to-back Opens. A feat last accomplished by Brooks Koepka, who will be aiming to win back-to-back majors following his phenomenal triumph at last month’s PGA Championship.
Like Koepka, 2023 Masters Champion, Jon Rahm, will attempt to win a second major title this year. Meanwhile, Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth will both be looking to add another to their collection after a lengthy absence.
Will local star Max Homa win his first? Can Collin Morikawa win a third and like Rory, need only the Masters to complete a career Grand Slam? Or will someone new breakthrough on the sport’s grandest stage.
Whatever Sunday may bring, it is all perfectly set up to be another enthralling major championship. LACC awaits, so without further ado, here is who our staff are selecting to win the 123rd United States Open.
Expert Picks and Predictions for the 123rd U.S. Open
After winning his fifth major title last month, Koepka will take to LACC in search of a sixth immediately. It’s nigh impossible to rule Brooks out in a major and a handful of our experts are backing him to claim number six in quick succession this week.
Mike Randleman: “He’s been the best player at the majors this year with a T-2nd and win. Koepka has an affinity for the U.S. Open and will claim his third title this year.”
Connor Murphy: “Koepka should be the odds-on favorite and is absolutely built for grind-it-out U.S. Opens. In his 9 appearances, he has two wins and 5 top 10s.”
Kathlene Bissell: “I’m convinced. People who can really play golf have picked Brooks Koepka for the PGA and now the U.S. Open, so I’m getting on the Brooks bandwagon.”
Brett Hoffman: “Hideki rolls into the week in good form, off the heels of a T16 at Memorial, T29 at PGA, and T23 at Byron Nelson. At the 2022 U.S. Open, Matsuyama made a final round charge to capture solo 4th.
A big game hunter, the 2021 Masters champion thrives in majors and seems to be fully recovered from a nagging neck injury. Hideki ranks #6th on TOUR in “Scrambling” and #21 in “Strokes Gained – Total”, 2 key metrics he’ll lean on in Tinseltown.”
Bill Felber: “Jon Rahm won the Masters, and Brooks Koepka won the PGA. The 2023 Major season is shaping up like a chalk player’s dream. I see no reason why that picture should change this week. For that reason, I’ll ride with Scottie Scheffler. He has eight top 10s in his most recent 13 Major starts, so he’s a great bet to be around at the finish.”
A four-time winner already in the state of California, a major breakthrough for the hometown hero would be awfully sweet for Max this week. A couple of our experts believe it will be a fairytale ending for Homa in LA this week.
Hans Geevers: “In relation to this week’s current listed 2023 U.S. Open field, in the last eight rounds played on the PGA Tour, Max Homa ranks second in strokes gained putting and seventh in birdie or better percentage.
It should also be noted that Max Homa’s last two PGA tournament wins took place in the state of California (2023 Farmers Insurance Open: 2023 Fortinet Championship).”
Alana Bannan: “Despite not recording much success at Majors, it’s hard to bet against Max Homa when he’s playing in his home state and town. Homa also holds the LACC course record of 61, which he shot back in 2013 at the Pac-12 Championships.”
Derek Helm: “Jordan Spieth has been in contention far too often to not have a win this year. He finished 5th at the Memorial and before injuring his wrist had five top-5 finishes in six events. Spieth wins his 2nd US Open and 4th Major Championship.”
Ryan Redding: “How could a Cali kid not win the US Open in Los Angeles, right? Morikawa and Homa are the hometown picks, but Homa’s major track record is anything but impressive, and Morikawa is coming off a W/D at the Memorial due to an injury. My pick? It may be boring, but Jon Rahm will extend Europe’s US Open win streak to three and bag his second US Open and third major championship.”
Josh Chandler: “It’s incredible that a win for Jon Rahm this week would not only be his second major championship in 2023; but also his fifth win of the year already. Two of those wins came in the State of California. During a week in which, somehow, the Spaniard seems to be going overlooked with the recent run of Scheffler and Brooks, Jon will remind everyone exactly how good he is and claim his second Californian major.”
The 123rd playing of the U.S. Open gets underway this Thursday, June 15th.