In the lead up to the first round of the US Open, the media had focused on things like Tiger Woods “dinghy” and how many players would miss their tee times as it could take up to three hours to get to Shinnecock Hills Golf Club from their hotel. There was a little focus on what happened the last time the Championship was staged at this amazing course in The Hamptons. This was 2004, when the golf course got away from them and they were having to syringe greens in between groups.
Today, as play began the wind began to blow, it was coming out of the west, a different direction than it had blown across Long Island for their practice rounds. As it blew harder and harder the golf course became more difficult and some of the best players in the world really struggled with scoring.
Only five players were at even par or better. Better was -1, with four players tied for the lead. That was the good of the day. All of the remaining 152 players were over par.
Sure there was the record set with Scott Gregory shooting a +22 score of 92. Players like Phil Mickelson and Bubba Watson both shot +7. Jordan Spieth and Tiger were at +8. Jason Day was +9. Rory McIlroy shot +10. All of these players are major winners! They are going to need to have a special round just to hang around on the weekend.
One of the players tied with the lead at -1 is world number one, and winner last week Dustin Johnson. He was the favorite coming into the week and showed the world why he is the best player out there. Even with DJ being under par, the top 10 players in the world average score was a 75.2 or a touch over +5.
The final three players rounding out the group at -1 are Scott Piercy, Ian Poulter and Russell Henley. This was an amazing number to post given the conditions today.
Dads Say So, the USGA has become synonymous with players shooting even par to win. Pretty certain that if you were to ask the four players at the top of the leaderboard if they would take three more rounds at even par and see where they came up on Sunday they would all take it, because they would be holding the trophy. This may be one of those weeks where we will have to watch the top players in the world struggle and not be around on the weekend. So we will be stuck watching the likes of Joe Buck and Tony Romo (who has at least played in one PGA Tour event) talk about the trials and tribulations that come with winning the US Open.