Follow-up to the U.S. Open
Sorry I missed you guys on Tuesday with this, but we had some technical issues that just fouled things up. So here's my take on the U.S. Open, and I certainly invite you all to chime in with yours.
- Old Merion certainly stood up to the test. With the early-week rain, the announcers were talking of "62s and 63s" but what we got was a totally different story. Even at a distance of less than 7,000 yards, the best golfers in the world were tested with every club in their bags. And they failed as often as not. The winning score was not much different than it was in previous opens at Merion, Olympic and other great courses that can stand the test of time and technology just fine.
- It still boils down to execution. Very simply, the players who hit the most great shots, and the fewest bad ones were those left standing at the end. But what we saw was pretty amazing in my book.
- Tour professionals missing greens with wedges in their hands. We saw this over and over and over. Mickelson sure could have made more putts, but he lost the tournament by bogeying two holes with a wedge in his hand from inside 120 yards. To hit one that long (off a tee, no less!) and one that short only a few holes later was mind-numbing to me.
- Tour professionals missing fairways with irons. Those short middle holes at Merion allowed these guys to hit 4- and 5-irons off the tees and they still couldn't find the fairways? Really? I just don’t understand that at all.
- Par-3 and par-4 holes they could barely reach. That's what I'm talking about. I love to play courses that require a fairway wood or hybrid for at least one or two approach shots, maybe more. I am reading a book about Hogan's loss to Jack Fleck in the 1955 Open at Olympic, and these guys were hitting 3- and 4-woods to several holes. It was great to see the modern pros tested equally.
- Real par-5s. When we saw the pros play true three-shot par five holes, we saw that they didn't rip them apart like in most tour events. And that's what a par-five hole is supposed to be. Both #2 and #4 required two good shots to put you in position for a real shot at an approach that could yield a birdie. But neither hole gave up many. That’s a far cry from the 16th at Bay Hill, where most of the pros were hitting 6-irons to 8-irons to the green.
Come on guys. That's just NOT a par five.
So, there's my take on the Open. Another great one for the ages. Hope the USGA brings it back to Old Merion soon. And it just moved way up on my bucket list of places I just have to go play.
The Wedge Guy is sponsored by SCOR Golf, where Terry Koehler is President/CEO. He encourages you
to submit your questions or topics to be considered for his columns on Tuesdays and Fridays. Each
submission automatically enters you to win a SCOR4161 wedge to be given away monthly. Click the
button below to submit your question or topic today.
I thought it was a good open I only watched the day that counted (sundays)
You cannot blame the course if you hit bad shots off the tee. They missed greens fairways hit spectators put ball in stands I can do all them, do you think their'll pay me millions. I bet the members were laughing their heads off
Funny how golfers that can hit a ball between 300 and 400 yards couldn't land a ball on the green 250 yards away.
Great course and excellent golf. more like it please.
Terry Koehler is "The Wedge Guy" and President of SCOR Golf
- The Short Game Company.
to learn more about Terry.