Carolyn Kaster / AP

By far, the most popular PGA Tour golf events to bet on are the majors — the four tournaments designated as the most prestigious and desirable to win. One of those majors — the US Open — deserves special attention.

Most PGA Tour events are showcases for how good tour pros are at the game of golf. The US Open does the exact opposite. Each course that hosts the Open is prepared especially for it, with rolling greens, par 5s converted into long par 4s, and famously thick rough lining both sides of narrow fairways. It also features the largest prize pool for top-finishers of the majors, with shares of $12.5 million.

The 2021 US Open, played at the notoriously difficult Torrey Pines South Course, is set to be one for the record books.  Torrey Pines last hosted the US Open in 2008, where Tiger Woods won his third US Open title after an all-time classic playoff battle with Rocco Mediate. Here’s your premier guide for betting on the US Open. We include the latest US Open odds, how to read the odds boards and how to grab some great bonuses, too.

2021 US Open golf odds

See below for updated odds from IA online sportsbooks for the next US Open. Use the drop-down menu to change your betting markets and click on any odds to claim your new sportsbook bonus:

Where is the US Open in 2021?

The 2021 US Open will occur at Torrey Pines Golf Course in La Jolla, CA, which is a suburb of San Diego. The Open will be played on the South Course. The event will mark the first time that the US Open has happened at Torrey Pines since 2008. Here are the key details:

  • Dates: June 17-20, 2021
  • Par: 72
  • Yards: 7,698
  • Average Temperatures: 61-72 degrees
  • Typical Weather: Variable, but mostly sunny
  • Purse: $12,500,000

Torrey Pines is an unusual golf course for a couple of reasons. For one thing, it is one of the few municipal golf courses to host a PGA event, much less a major.

The other interesting aspect is that, despite Torrey Pines’ position overlooking the Pacific Ocean, it is not a links course like Pebble Beach. The course’s name refers to a specific strain of pine tree that only grows in the area, and these trees dot the various fairways of the course.

2021 US Open favorites

Although new names and faces could rise to the top by the time the 2021 US Open rolls around, we already have a good idea about who are the leading candidates to win. Since you’re going to have your pick of choices at Iowa sportsbooks, let’s talk about the most likely golfers to take home the eponymous trophy. Each golfer’s name will have their current odds to win on FanDuel Sportsbook.

Dustin Johnson

A list of favorites for any PGA (or USGA) event must include Dustin Johnson. He is considered the best golfer in the world right now, and in his November 2020 victory at the Masters, he set a new record for the tournament by finishing -20 to par. The win was one of three during the 2020 season, and there’s no reason that “DJ” won’t just keep rolling in 2021.

Bryson DeChambeau

Bryson DeChambeau is the defending US Open champion after his win in September 2020 at Winged Foot. DeChambeau is one of the more unusual golfers on tour due to his swing and club selection. He is the longest driver in the PGA right now and favors using his length off the tee to set up shorter approaches. He also carries irons and wedges that are the same length, with their only variation coming in the loft of the club.

Jon Rahm

Jon Rahm is a Spanish golfer and former world No. 1, albeit briefly. He has consistently finished top — or close to it — at several tournaments in 2019 through 2020. Rahm also took home wins at the Memorial and BMW Championship in 2020. He is listed at shorter odds than DeChambeau, but he might be slightly less likely for the simple fact that he has struggled to put together a winning weekend in majors so far.

Rory McIlroy

Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy has already won the US Open once (2014) and is in a good position to do so again. He was the world No. 1 as recently as February 2020 and hasn’t missed a cut in his last 23 professional tournaments. Furthermore, he is likely the top player with the most experience playing on seaside courses and dealing with adverse weather during a round.

Long-shots for the 2021 US Open

Not everyone is still at their career apex. A quick check of the lower tiers of FanDuel’s odds display for the US Open includes many recognizable names. Rather than comment on the sad state of affairs for some of these players, let’s talk about some of the long-shots that could make some noise at the 2021 US Open.

Jason Kokrak

The first notable who could piece things together for a high-finish at the US Open is Jason Kokrak. The American golfer has been a tour pro for nine years, but secured his first victory in October 2020 and could be poised to enter a new era. He is decent in terms of his driving accuracy, driving distance, and scoring average, and he has the experience to be in the right headspace to handle the challenges at Torrey Pines.

Tyrrell Hatton

The other notable long-shot has to be Tyrrell Hatton. While a listing at +5,000 isn’t awful — after all, even Dustin Johnson only merits a +850 — it seems a bit long for the 10th-best golfer in the world and a 2020 tournament winner. Two of his tournament wins have come on links courses and their variable conditions, so he should be able to navigate the perils of the US Open better than most.

What about Tiger Woods at the 2021 US Open?

Though his star cannot possibly reach the zeniths it did in the early 2000s; Tiger Woods remains the most famous golfer on the planet. It is unlikely that anyone over the age of five has not heard his name before. So, each major tournament always brings questions about how Woods will perform.

In 2021, however, there will be no Tiger at the US Open. Woods was involved in a serious car crash in the early Spring and is sidelined indefinitely with multiple leg injuries.

It’s a shame for more than one reason, as after his throwback win at the 2019 Masters anticipation for Torrey Pines was high. It was, after all, the site of his third US Open win and he prevailed after a 19-hole (18 plus sudden death) with Rocco Mediate.

Before his injury he was the 40th-best player in the world, according to the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR), and was 38th on the PGA’s Money List in 2020.

US Open live betting

When legal sports betting  arrived in Iowa, no one imagined that it would be different from the smoky backrooms or giant sportsbooks in casinos. To be sure, there are retail sportsbooks in Iowa, but there are also online sportsbooks. With online sportsbooks comes live sports betting, including on the US Open.

You can make live bets on all manner of sporting events, including golf tournaments. Live betting, or in-game wagering, are wagers you can only make after the beginning of a game, match or tournament. However, they add multiple new dimensions to betting, including wagering on individual shots. If a player seems to be hotter than usual, you can throw some money behind him instead of having to sit idly and watch your pregame picks fall apart.

To that end, the pregame bets will continue into the rounds at Torrey Pines. As players move up and down the leaderboard (and get cut), their odds will change. If you’re on your game and astute about keeping track, you might find some good opportunities. Live betting on golf is probably a bit easier than on other sports, too. An average pairing on the US Open will spend 10-15 minutes on each hole and up to four hours to complete the round. That should give you more time to plan out your next wager than live bettors in sports like basketball or football ever have.

The most important thing, however, is that betting on the US Open at Iowa sportsbooks is not a passive event. If you are not satisfied with how things are going, you can always throw your hat into the ring again.

Best Iowa sportsbook app for betting on the US Open

Iowa is home to several of the best online sportsbooks right now. Even if the number wasn’t growing, it would be a wealth of opportunities for Iowans to place their wagers on their favorite sporting events, including the US Open. However, folks in the Hawkeye State may be wondering what the top betting app available is right now.

Fanduel IA Sportsbook appFor golf bettors, you’re going to have a tough time finding a better betting home than FanDuel.

FanDuel Sportsbook is, unsurprisingly, the sports betting arm of the daily fantasy sports provider. In fact, FanDuel is now part of a larger gambling conglomerate known as Flutter Entertainment.

FanDuel gets the nod for the best app for the US Open based upon the sheer breadth of wagers it offers for golf. FanDuel announced it’s official partnership with the PGA Tour in August 2020. In late-January, the operator promises to provide real-time highlights of tour events to all FanDuel app users. Even during a month-long lull in the action in December 2020, you could still find options to bet on US Open futures, Masters futures, PGA Championship futures and Open Championship futures.

There were also options for the European Tour and the Ryder Cup. There was even a prop bet running about which player would reign supreme on the season’s money list.

Even a top competitor, like DraftKings, was only managing odds on the Masters and the Open Championship at the same point in time. So, FanDuel is the ticket for anyone who wants to have some genuine flexibility and golf betting options.

How to bet on the US Open

Betting on golf, whether for the US Open or not, is unique in the landscape of sports betting. The game’s structure means that specific types of bets are more prominent or less available than in other sports.

Futures betting (to win bet)

Perhaps the most unusual thing about betting on the US Open is that the primary betting type is likely the futures bet. Absent any meaningful way to set a spread or moneyline, and most golf bettors are first concerned with picking the golfer(s) that will win the event. For this reason, you will commonly see this type of wager titled a “to win” bet.

In general, you will have the entire field of players available for your wager. Except in extremely rare cases, each player will be an underdog to win and will be listed with a positive moneyline payout next to their name.

This fact might seem strange since someone has to be the favorite to win. However, since player performance is unpredictable in any given week, the chance a particular player will win — even the favorite — is much less than the chance that someone else will.

The US Open field is usually filled with familiar names. There are numerous pathways for top professionals to receive an invitation, and it usually boils down to the best players during the tour in a given year. Although some other players will make it through special exemptions, past wins or qualifying events, the eventual winner rarely comes from this group.

When should you bet on US Open?

In terms of the best time to bet on US Open futures, it’s important to do a couple of things. First of all, you want to watch the sportsbooks soon after the previous year’s US Open concludes. It’s quite helpful to establish the baseline estimate that each book has for the following year.

That baseline can lead to one of the first times to think about placing a wager. You should recheck the odds after the first month or two of the tournaments takes place. If it seems like a certain player is putting it together better than before, you might be able to catch a good price before the smart money adjusts.

The other time to bet is in the last few weeks before the US Open itself. Recent performance is one of the strongest indicators for a golfer’s chances of success. And a surging player who is feeling comfortable in his swing and rhythm is a good bet to continue doing so at the US Open.

Other common golf bets

In addition to futures betting, there are also several common types of wagers that you’ll be able to make on the US Open. They include:

  • The Field: This one is similar to the futures bet described above, but there might be some limits put on which players are involved.
  • Head-to-Head: If you’re a fan of the moneyline but also betting on golf, this is the bet you want. It’s simply a wager about which of two players will perform better during the tournament.
  • Each Way: It’s hard to pick a winner, but less difficult to choose which players might finish in the top three, top five, or top ten. Although the payouts won’t be as large in each way bet, you’ll probably have a much better chance of success.
  • First Round Leader: Exactly as it sounds, this bet is about which player will “win” the round on Thursday.
  • Group Matchups: Another option for moneyline fans is this one, which takes the head-to-head and adds players to each side. You’ll still be choosing which group will have the lowest score.
  • Nationality: If you want to mix in a dash of patriotism with your betting, you can wager on a couple of different country-specific options. You can bet either on the nationality of the player to win the US Open, or you can bet on which player from a certain country will perform best out of his fellow countrymen.

Golf props

Like most sports, there are numerous proposition bets that you can make on golf tournaments. Although props are usually about ancillary statistics in other sports, they are more about yes/no questions when it comes to tournaments like the US Open.

So, a sportsbook might ask you whether you’ll see a hole-in-one or whether the tournament will go to a playoff. You may also be able to make a point spread-like bet on the eventual margin of victory. First-round leader bets would qualify as props, and you can probably bet on which player will have the low round each day of the tournament.

US Open betting tips

Whether you’re new to betting on golf or an old hand, it’s a good idea to get a few basic concepts at the forefront of your mind. Golf is an extremely temperamental sport to bet, and the US Open, with its heavy rough and adverse conditions, might be the crankiest event of all. So, here are a few tips to help you make the best decision you can:

  1. Know the Course: Above any other tournament, the conditions at the US Open will come into play. As stated earlier, the winning score for this event is commonly above par, and at most, only a few players ever go into the red. Torrey Pines South Course is one of the hardest courses in the PGA rotation to play and is often one of the tour pros’ least favorite because of it — even with the tremendous views. So, understand what changes have been made to the course in recent times, both aesthetically and in preparation for the US Open.
  2. Dig into Players’ Stats: Once you have an idea about the kind of player who will win, it’s time to do your homework on the competitors. The US Open is designed to be the ultimate test of a golfer’s game and punish those who have deficiencies. So, it’s not enough to belong off the tee – you need to be accurate. On the other hand, it’s not enough to be simply accurate, either — you have to have the driving distance to negotiate one of the longest courses on the entire Tour. Look at how golfers deal with adversity under stats like their sand saves percentage or scrambling. The numbers might tell a different story than the public perception about which players are set to lead the way.
  3. Look at Recent History: Golf is a game of streaks for players. A world-class player can inadvertently tweak a small part of his game and end up losing his entire edge. One little issue tends to affect the entire game because each shot leads to the next. By contrast, a player can also have something click and start putting things together like never before. A simple coach’s tip, a changed swing angle, or a new bit of equipment can have a previously middling tour pro chewing up the course. Try to find golfers that seem to be gathering steam, both in terms of tournaments won and high finishes. Golf is unpredictable but can have a bit of inertia sometimes.

How to watch the US Open in Iowa

Because the US Open is one of the four major tournaments in golf, it is guaranteed to receive ample coverage from media outlets. You will be able to watch the relevant moments from the event on four different television stations and a variety of livestream options.

Television

The USGA announced in June 2020 that it would be ceasing its partnership with Fox Sports and moving to a deal with NBC. Because of the deal, US Open coverage will be available on both the main NBC channel itself and the NBC-owned Golf Channel.

So, when June 2021 rolls around, check your local listings for US Open coverage on NBC. All four days of the tournament are scheduled for broadcast, and there are usually additional hours of programming on the Golf Channel.

Live streaming

Along with its two major television options, NBC also brings its GolfPass streaming service to the deal with the USGA. So, it will be possible for members of the service to stream the US Open directly to their mobile devices or computers.

This feed is the official source for streaming the tournament. However, several other streaming services can also offer you access to the events at Torrey Pines. They are:

  • Hulu
  • YouTube TV
  • FuboTV
  • Sling TV
  • AT&T TV Now
  • PlayStation VUE

Some of these options, such as Hulu, may be available free of charge to you as a benefit of your cable subscription or cellphone provider. You can either check with your provider or simply log onto one of these services and see what happens.

US Open FAQ

Where is the US Open played?

The US Open rotates around several golf courses in the country. The 2021 US Open will occur at Torrey Pines Golf Course in La Jolla, CA.

How many players are in the field at the US Open?

There are 156 players. A notable exception was the 2020 US Open, which closed its qualifying rounds over COVID-19 concerns and only fielded 144 players.

How many players make the cut in the US Open?

Generally, a little less than half the field gets to play on the weekend at the US Open. The exact number varies each year based upon where the cut score ends up.

What is the purse for US Open payouts?

The purse is $12,500,000. From that fund, the winner of the US Open can count on taking home $2.25 million.

Which players get automatic US Open invites?

There is a long list of players whose previous performances yield automatic invitations to the US Open. Generally, if you are a recent champion of any of the four majors, you’re on the list. Other tournaments, like the Players Championship and the BMW Championship, will send their champions, too. Top amateurs, seniors, and international players can count on punching their tickets, too. If any of the Official World Golf Rankings players are still not included, then they are invited at this point. The USGA can then send special invitations as it sees fit.

What is the record for lowest-winning score to par?

The record is -16. The record for lowest winning score to par is shared by Rory McIlroy (2011) and Brooks Koepka (2017). However, McIlroy’s tournament score of 268 is the lowest total number of shots in the modern era.

What is the highest winning score to par?

Technically, the honor for worst winning performance goes to Walter Hagen (1919), whose +17 got him into a playoff with Mike Brady. Hagen won the playoff round the next day by a single stroke. Since 2000, the highest winning score has been shared by Geoff Ogilvy (2006) and Angel Cabrera (2007), who both shot +5 en route to victory.

What is the largest margin of victory ever?

Tiger Woods’ victory by 15 strokes in 2000 remains one for the ages. His performance is startling given how closely most US Opens are contested. Woods’ final score at -12 meant that he was not only winning by the biggest margin; he was the only player to shoot under par.

When was the first US Open?

The first Open was in 1895. England’s Horace Rawlins shot his way to a 2-stroke victory in the 36-hole event at Newport Golf Club in Rhode Island. For his efforts, he received a whopping $150 and a gold medal.

Which golf course has hosted the US Open most often?

Oakmont Country Club in Plum, PA, has hosted the US Open nine times in the tournament’s history, placing the venerable course two above Baltusrol Golf Club. It most recently played host in 2017 and is scheduled to do so again in 2025.