Cowboys Golf Club Review

Texas Outside Rating: 9.5

Golf - Public Course · 18 Holes · Par 72
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Cowboys Golf Club Review

Review and Rating of Cowboys Golf Club in Grapevine

Cowboys Golf Club is the world's first and only NFL-themed golf course and it’s a real pleasure to play – in fact, if you’re in the DFW area this is a must play.  Cowboys Golf Club was designed by Jeffery Brauer and he did a superb job of carving a unique course that leverages the heavily treed and natural rolling terrain.  Since opening in 2001, Cowboys Golf Club which is now part of the Arcis Golf portfolio of managed courses, was quickly recognized as one of the best golf courses in Texas.  In fact, since then some of the awards and accolades include:

  • #1 Daily Fee Facility in the DFW area by the Dallas Morning News
  • #1 ranked course in the Southwest by Zagat
  • Honorable mention in the Top Ten Courses You Can Play by Golf Magazine
  • #1 Daily Fee Course in the Metroplex by Avid Golfer
  • #22 in the Best Public Courses in America by Golf World Magazine
  • recognized by Texas Outside as one of the Best Public Courses in Texas

Jeffrey Brauer built a course that takes advantage of the 159 acres that the course plays through to create a scenic as well as fun and challenging 18 holes.  He worked closely with the City of Grapevine and the Army Corps of Engineers to preserve the natural environment while creating a unique DFW golf experience.  This is one of those courses that will throw a lot at you and test your game from the tee box to the cup – you'll encounter trees, waterways and natural habitats, dramatic elevation changes, forced carries, dog legs, huge treacherous bunkers, contoured fairways, and complex greens. 

Cowboys Golf Club is a tad pricey but it is the only "all-nclusive golf course in Texas," which means that the price includes greens fee, cart, GPS, practice balls, and all  food and non-alcoholic beverages for the day.  You might think that the food includes a hot dog and Coke but that's not the case; at Cowboys Golf Club you can enjoy a full breakfast (eggs your way, French toast, buttermilk pancakes, brisket burrito, and more) and choose from several small bites (deep fried Dr. Pepper spare ribs, nachos, quesadillas, salt & pepper shrimp, and more), salads, big plates (fish tacos, chicken tenders or Thai crusted salmon) or hand foods like lamb gyro, Cuban sandwich, burgers, cheesesteak and more.  In addition, you'll get to experience first-class service and facilities, near-perfect conditions, and some very fun golf holes plus a plethora of Dallas Cowboys memorabilia - golf carts named after an individual player (our cart honored Tony Dorset), replica Super Bowl trophies and rings, plaques at each golf hole with some Dallas Cowboy's history, and lots more.

Cowboys Golf Club is tough, but fair, and if you can hit the ball fairly straight, avoid most of the bunkers, and putt, you'll have a good score.  There are four tee boxes with yardages ranging from 4702 yards to 7017 yards and a slope of 114 to 140.  Cowboys Golf Club is no walk in the park, so make sure you pick the right set of tee boxes. The front nine is our favorite and it's loaded with some fun and unique holes, while the back nine may be a little more challenging.

Cowboys Golf Club has some outstanding holes that are not only very scenic but fun, unique, and challenging, for example:

  • The first four holes are some of the best around (lots of “wows” from the tee boxes)  with dramatic elevation changes, wide sweeping heavily contoured and mounded fairways, treacherous bunkers, dog legs, uphill shots, challenging green complexes, and a forced carry over water
  • #8 is a fun 520 yard par 5 with a sharp dog leg left in front of a large pond and a very challenging approach to a smallish green (19 feet by 31 feet) with no room for error thanks to four treacherous bunkers - this hole requires accuracy off the tee box to avoid the lake and trees and give you a reasonable approach shot.  It will tempt you with a risk/reward shot to try and fly the trees to shorten the dog leg, and requires a precise shot to nail the green
  • #13 is the #2 handicap thanks to 594 yards to the green, a narrow dog leg right fairway, and a hidden creek crossing the fairway in front of the green
  • The finishing hole will make you want to play Cowboys Golf Club again – a 519 yard par 5 with a fairway that twists and turns through a minefield of  steep and deep bunkers - there are six big bunkers within 100 yards of the green

When we played in early October the greens were near perfect – smooth, true and challenging with some combination of slope and contour.  They were running at fair speed of around 8 to 9.  Most of the greens are on the large size, ranging from 18 to 73 feet wide and 20 to 47 feet deep, and all are well-guarded, requiring accuracy on the approach shots to stay out of trouble. 

The bunkers are huge and treacherous – steep faced and very deep and strategically placed, and there are a lot of them!  The bunkers were perfect - white, thick and fluffy sand that was a joy to hit out of.   Study the GPS carefully and do whatever it takes to avoid the bunkers some of which are so big you may get lost and others that are so steep and deep you may need a ladder to get out – take a snack with you in case you get stuck in one. 

The fairways range from wide and sweeping to pretty tight, but most are generous and fair.  The rough is wide and was cut very playable.  Miss the rough and you're wet, in a natural area, or lost in the trees.  Most of the fairways are rolling and some are mounded and heavily contoured, causing some very uneven lies.  They were near perfect when we played.  One hole has some condos along one side - no homes or barking dogs but you do get to watch huge airplanes fly over on their way to land at DFW airport

Cowboys Golf Club has a resort feel to it – a beautiful 13,500-square foot Austin stone clubhouse, excellent practice facilities (including a star-shaped putting green), top-notch service, well-stocked pro shop, good sports bar and restaurant, excellent conditions and resort pricing. 

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Course Slope & Ratings

Tee Box Yardage Rating Slope
Blue 6,563 72.6 135
White 6,182 70.9 131
Gold 7,017 74.7 138
Red 4,702 68.9 114

Course Information

Course Architect:
Jeffrey Brauer
Greens Type:
TIF Eagle
Greens Condition
Greens Difficulty
Fairway Condition
Bunker Condition
Beware of water on 11 holes and the 53 sand traps.

Texas Outside Rating

Overall Rating:
9.5 out of 10
Fun to Play:
Front Nine Rating:
Back Nine Rating:


Approximate Weekend
$139.00 to $189.00

The Clubhouse is spectacular with a well stocked pro shop, sports bar and grill, lots of Dallas Cowboy history, poker room, and men's and women's locker rooms with showers and an outside patio. Service is excellent with a friendly and cute staff. Practice facilities are also excellent.



Here's How Texas Outside Determines the Scorecard Rating

The Texas Outside rating scale ranges from 1 to 10 – a perfect 10 course would be something like this:  links along a cliff overlooking the Pacific ocean and bordered by tall trees; lush fairways on rolling hills with lots of natural hazards; water (which is crystal clear) on most of the holes; immaculate greens (but they are undulating and tough); lots of variety and character (each hole is completely different and includes blind shots, elevation changes, doglegs, and significant challenges); perfectly manicured traps with the whitest and prettiest sand you’ve ever seen; a nice club house with great food and a 19th hole; a GPS; plenty of beverage carts or your own cooler and ice; and it only costs $40 bucks! What this means is that you probably won’t find any 10s in Texas – try Cabo San Lucas, Pebble Beach, or some of the Hawaii courses! 
Texas Outside rates courses on the following:

  • Beauty – tall trees, rolling hills, beautiful houses, waterfalls, and similar stuff would score high; a 1 would be flat, bushes or cactus instead of trees, and some grass but mostly weeds
  • Difficulty – a straight, 300 yard par 4 with no traps or hazards, no out of bounds or water would probably get a 1; if it is a 460 yard par 4 over two ravines, with water along one side, natural hazards on the other, strategically placed traps or that dreaded tree right in the middle of the fairway, we are talking a 10. 
  • Variety – what would you give a course where all the holes looked and played exactly the same (“I thought we just played that hole!”); were side-by-side, which is good for finding or dodging other people’s balls, but not much fun; and you can see the flag from every tee box?  That’s right, it gets a 1.
  • Fun Scale – a 10 is where you walk off the course and say “now that was fun” and you can’t wait to get back, or you immediately turn around and play another 18 holes
  • Value – a 5 is $50 to $60, a 10 is $20 to $30, and 1 is $200 or so – of course all of this is dependent upon how you liked the course.  For example, if a run down, boring municipal course, with six players on each hole was only $10; it would still get a value rating of 1.
  • Condition – this one’s pretty easy – what condition are the fairways. A 10 commands very lush perfectly manicured fairways, compared to a 1, which has fire ants, weeds, and more dirt than grass!
  • Condition of Greens and Difficulty – very hard to read greens with lots of undulation and tough pin placement, rate very high on the difficulty scale.  Condition is self-explanatory.  

All of the above determines the overall score for the golf course.  In other words, we like courses that are pretty, fun, very challenging with a lot of variety, and fairways and greens in excellent condition – all for $40.  We also tend to play the courses that are affordable for the masses, which means in the $30 to $80 range. We rate hard and we haven’t found a 10 in Texas yet – don’t worry we haven’t given up and we’re still looking.