Golf lost one of its great design architects Thursday when Pete Dye died at age 94.
Dye had been battling Alzheimer's disease for several years. His golf courses often were described as “dye-abolical” because of the punishment they could inflict on a bad shot. All were memorable. Among the most famous is the TPC Sawgrass. That's where The Players Championship has been held since 1982.
It was Dye's wife, Alice, who inspired him to build the island green at No. 17. Other Dye designs include Whistling Straits, Oak Tree, Kiawah Island and Crooked Stick in Carmel, Indiana. All hosted majors.
Of the more than 100 courses Dye built across the country, 22 are in Indiana -- including Brickyard Crossing, Eagle Creek Golf Club's Pines and Sycamore courses, The Fort Golf Resort, Maple Creek Country Club and Sahm Golf Course in Indianapolis.
Pete met his wife Alice while attending college in Florida, and relocated to Indianapolis -- Alice's hometown -- after they were married in 1950. According to the Dye Designs website, Dye's interest in golf course maintenance and design blossomed during his membership at the Country Club of Indianapolis, where he served a number of years as the club's greens chairman.
He would go on to take agronomy classes at Purdue University, and eventually left a successful insurance sales career to begin building golf courses.
The Dye's first design was a nine hole course in Greenwood, Indiana called El Dorado, now known as Dye’s Walk Country Club. Their first 18 hole course was Heather Hills in Indianapolis, now named Maple Creek Country Club.
Crooked Stick, built in 1965, is considered to be Dye's first "great" course. It hosted the 1991 PGA Championship and is one of nine Dye courses currently ranked among the top 100 in the U.S. by Golf Digest.