PGA - U.S. Open Championship Preview
From The Sports Network
Dates: Thursday, June 13th through Sunday, June 16th
Site: Merion Golf Club (East Course), Ardmore, Pennsylvania
Course Architect: Hugh Wilson (1912), Tom Fazio (2000)
Par: 70
Yardage: 6,996
Hole-By-Hole
HoleParHolePar
1 Par 4 350 yds 10 Par 4 303 yds
2 Par 5 556 yds 11 Par 4 367 yds
3 Par 3 256 yds 12 Par 4 403 yds
4 Par 5 628 yds 13 Par 3 115 yds
5 Par 4 504 yds 14 Par 4 464 yds
6 Par 4 487 yds 15 Par 4 411 yds
7 Par 4 360 yds 16 Par 4 430 yds
8 Par 4 359 yds 17 Par 3 246 yds
9 Par 3 236 yds 18 Par 4 521 yds
36 - 3,736 yards34 - 3,260 yards
Annual: 113th
Television:
ESPN - Thursday/Friday -- 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (et), 5-7 p.m. (ET),
NBC - Thursday/Friday -- 3-5 p.m. (ET),
NBC - Saturday/Sunday -- 1-7:30 p.m. (ET)
Defending Champion: Webb Simpson
Runner-Up: Michael Thompson, Graeme McDowell
Tournament Record: 268 (Rory McIlroy, 2011 - Congressional C.C., Blue Course)
54-Hole Record: 199 (Rory McIlroy, 2011 - Congressional C.C., Blue Course)
36-Hole Record: 131 (Rory McIlroy, 2011 - Congressional C.C., Blue Course)
18-Hole Record: 63 (Johnny Miller, 1973 - Oakmont Country Club; Jack Nicklaus, Tom Weiskopf, 1980 - Baltusrol Golf Club; Vijay Singh, 2003 - Olympia Fields Country Club)
Course Record: 64 (Lee Mackey Jr, 1950; Ben Crenshaw, 1981)
Total Purse: $8,000,000
Shares: 1st Place - $1,440,000; 2nd place - $865,000; 3rd place - $545,000
2012 Finish
 PlayerScorePlayerScore
  Webb Simpson 281 Padraig Harrington 283
  Michael Thompson 282 Jason Dufner 283
  Graeme McDowell 282 John Peterson 283
  Jim Furyk 283 Ernie Els 284
  David Toms 283 Five players at 285
Past United States Open Winners
YearWinnerScoreRunner-UpsCourse
2012Webb Simpson281Thompson, McDowellOlympic Club
2011Rory McIlroy268Jason DayCongressional
2010Graeme McDowell284Gregory HavretPebble Beach
2009Lucas Glover276Mickelson, Duval, BarnesBethpage Black
2008*Tiger Woods283Rocco MediateTorrey Pines
2007Angel Cabrera285Woods, FurykOakmont
2006Geoff Ogilvy285Furyk, Mickelson, MontgomerieWinged Foot
2005Michael Campbell280Tiger WoodsPinehurst
2004Retief Goosen276Phil MickelsonShinnecock Hills
2003Jim Furyk272Stephen LeaneyOlympia Fields
2002Tiger Woods277Phil MickelsonBethpage Black
2001*Retief Goosen276Mark BrooksSouthern Hills
2000Tiger Woods272Els, JimenezPebble Beach
1999Payne Stewart279Phil MickelsonPinehurst
1998Lee Janzen280Payne StewartThe Olympic Club
1997Ernie Els276Colin MontgomerieCongressional
1996Steve Jones278Lehman, Love IIIOakland Hills
1995Corey Pavin280Greg NormanShinnecock Hills
1994*Ernie Els279Roberts, MontgomerieOakmont
1993Lee Janzen272Payne StewartBaltusrol
1992Tom Kite285Jeff SlumanPebble Beach
1991*Payne Stewart282Scott SimpsonHazeltine National
1990*Hale Irwin280Mike DonaldMedinah
1989Curtis Strange278Beck, McCumber, WoosnamOak Hill
1988*Curtis Strange278Nick FaldoThe Country Club
1987Scott Simpson277Tom WatsonOlympic Club
1986Raymond Floyd279Wadkins, BeckShinnecock Hills
1985Andy North279Barr, Chen, WatsonOakland Hills
1984*Fuzzy Zoeller276Greg NormanWinged Foot
1983Larry Nelson280Tom WatsonOakmont
1982Tom Watson282Jack NicklausPebble Beach
1981David Graham273Burns, RogersMerion
1980Jack Nicklaus272Isao AokiBaltusrol
1979Hale Irwin284Player, PateInverness Club
1978Andy North285Stockton, SneadCherry Hills
1977Hubert Green278Lou GrahamSouthern Hills
1976Jerry Pate277Weiskopf, GeibergerAtlanta Athletic Club
1975*Lou Graham287John MahaffeyMedinah
1974Hale Irwin287Forrest FelzerWinged Foot
1973Johnny Miller279John SchleeOakmont
1972Jack Nicklaus290Bruce CramptonPebble Beach
1971*Lee Trevino275Jack NicklausMerion
1970Tony Jacklin281Dave HillHazeltine
1969Orville Moody281Beman, Geiberger, RosburgChampions
1968Lee Trevino275Jack NicklausOak Hill
1967Jack Nicklaus275Arnold PalmerBaltusrol
1966*Billy Casper278Arnold PalmerOlympic Club
1965*Gary Player278Kel NagleBellerive
1964Ken Venturi278Tommy JacobsCongressional
1963*Julius Boros293Cupit, PalmerThe Country Club
1962*Jack Nicklaus283Arnold PalmerOakmont
1961Gene Littler281Goalby, SandersOakland Hills
1960Arnold Palmer280Jack NicklausCherry Hills
1959Billy Casper282Bob RosburgWinged Foot
1958Tommy Bolt283Gary PlayerSouthern Hills
1957*Dick Mayer282Cary MiddlecoffInverness Club
1956Cary Middlecoff281Hogan, BorosOak Hill
1955*Jack Fleck287Ben HoganOlympic Club
1954Ed Furgol284Gene LittlerBaltusrol
1953Ben Hogan283Sam SneadOakmont
1952Julius Boros281Ed OliverNorthwood
1951Ben Hogan287Clayton HeafnerOakland Hills
1950*Ben Hogan287Mangrum, FazioMerion
1949Cary Middlecoff286Snead, HeafnerMedinah
1948Ben Hogan276Jimmy DemaretRiviera
1947*Lew Worsham282Sam SneadSt. Louis
1946*Lloyd Mangrum284Ghezzi, NelsonCanterbury
1945No championship (World War II)
1944No championship (World War II)
1943No championship (World War II)
1942No championship (World War II)
1941Craig Wood284Denny ShuteColonial
1940*Lawson Little287Gene SarazenCanterbury
1939*Byron Nelson284Wood, ShutePhiladelphia
1938Ralph Guldahl284Dick MetzCherry Hills
1937Ralph Guldahl281Sam SneadOakland Hills
1936Tony Manero282Harry CooperBaltusrol
1935Sam Parks Jr.299Jimmy ThomsonOakmont
1934Olin Dutra293Gene SarazenMerion Cricket Club
1933Johnny Goodman287Ralph GuldahlNorth Shore
1932Gene Sarazen286Perkins, CruickshankFresh Meadows
1931*Billy Burke292George Von ElmInverness
1930Robert T. Jones Jr.287Macdonald SmithInterlachen
1929Robert T. Jones Jr.294Al EspinosaWinged Foot
1928*Johnny Farrell294Robert T. Jones Jr.Olympia Fields
1927*Tommy Armour301Harry CooperOakmont
1926Robert T. Jones Jr.293Joe TurnesaScioto
1925*Willie Macfarlane291Robert T. Jones Jr.Worcester
1924Cyril Walker297Robert T. Jones Jr.Oakland Hills
1923*Robert T. Jones Jr.296Bobby CruickshankInwood
1922Gene Sarazen288Black, Jones Jr.Skokie
1921James M. Barnes289Hagen, McLeodColumbia
1920Edward Ray295Vardon, Burke, Diegel, HutchisonInverness
1919*Walter Hagen301Mike BradyBrae Burn
1918No championships (World War I)
1917No championships (World War I)
1916Charles Evans Jr.286Jock HutchisonMinikahda Club
1915Jerome Travers297Tom McNamaraBaltusrol
1914Walter Hagen290Charles Evans Jr.Midlothian
1913*Francis Quimet304Vardon, RayThe Country Club
1912John McDermott307Tom McNamaraCountry Club of Buffalo
1911*John McDermott307Brady, SimpsonChicago
1910*Alex Smith289McDermott, SmithPhiladelphia Cricket Club
1909George Sargent290Tom McNamaraEnglewood
1908*Fred McLeod322Willie SmithMyopia Hunt Club
1907Alex Ross302Gil Nicholls Philadelphia Cricket Club
1906Alex Smith295Willie SmithOnwentsia Club
1905Willie Anderson314Alex SmithMyopia Hunt Club
1904Willie Anderson303Gil NichollsGlen View Club
1903*Willie Anderson307David BrownBaltusrol
1902Laurie Auchterlonie307Stewart GardnerGarden City
1901*Willie Anderson331Alex SmithMyopia Hunt Club
1900Harry Vardon313JH TaylorChicago
1899Willie Smith315Low, Fitzjohn, WayBaltimore
1898Fred Herd328Alex SmithMyopia Hunt Club
1897Joe Lloyd162Willie AndersonChicago
1896James Foulis152Horace RawlinsShinnecock Hills
1895Horace Rawlins173Willie DunnNewport
* - Won in playoff
Top Contenders in the Field
 Player2003200420052006200720082009201020112012
Webb Simpson --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- T-14 Won
Graeme McDowell --- --- T-80 T-48 T-30 --- T-18 Won T-14 T-2
Michael Thompson --- --- --- --- --- T-29 --- --- --- T-2
Padraig Harrington T-10 T-31 mc 5th mc T-36 mc T-22 T-45 T-4
Jim Furyk Won T-48 T-28 T-2 T-2 T-36 T-33 T-16 mc T-4
Jason Dufner --- --- --- T-40 62nd --- --- T-33 mc T-4
John Peterson --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- T-4
David Toms T-5 T-20 T-15 WD T-5 T-60 mc T-33 mc T-4
Ernie Els T-5 T-9 T-15 T-26 T-51 T-14 mc 3rd mc 9th
Lee Westwood --- T-36 T-33 --- T-36 3rd T-23 T-16 T-3 T-10
Kevin Chappell --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- T-3 T-10
John Senden --- mc --- --- --- --- --- mc T-30 T-10
Casey Wittenberg --- T-36 mc --- --- --- mc --- --- T-10
Steve Stricker --- mc --- T-6 T-13 T-29 T-23 T-58 T-19 T-15
Martin Kaymer --- --- --- --- --- T-53 mc T-8 T-39 T-15
Adam Scott mc mc T-28 T-21 mc T-26 T-36 mc mc T-15
Nick Watney --- --- --- --- mc T-60 mc 76th mc T-21
Justin Rose T-5 mc --- --- T-10 mc mc --- mc T-21
Tiger Woods T-20 T-17 2nd mc T-2 Won T-6 T-4 --- T-21
Matt Kuchar --- --- mc mc --- T-48 mc T-6 T-14 T-27
Robert Karlsson --- --- mc --- mc T-4 --- T-27 T-45 T-29
Sergio Garcia T-35 T-20 T-3 mc mc T-18 T-10 T-22 T-7 T-38
Charl Schwartzel --- --- --- T-48 T-30 --- mc T-16 T-9 T-38
Hunter Mahan mc --- --- --- T-13 T-18 T-6 mc mc T-38
Zach Johnson --- T-48 mc mc T-45 mc mc T-77 T-30 T-41
Ian Poulter --- mc T-57 T-12 T-36 wd T-18 T-47 mc T-41
Rickie Fowler --- --- --- --- --- T-60 mc --- mc T-41
Matteo Manassero --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- T-54 T-46
Angel Cabrera T-35 16th T-33 T-26 Won mc T-54 T-22 mc T-46
Jason Day --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- 2nd T-59
Phil Mickelson T-55 2nd T-33 T-2 mc T-18 T-2 T-4 T-54 T-65
Keegan Bradley --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- T-68
Rory McIlroy --- --- --- --- --- --- T-10 mc Won mc
Y.E. Yang --- --- mc --- --- --- --- mc T-3 mc
Robert Garrigus --- mc --- --- --- mc --- --- T-3 mc
Peter Hanson --- --- mc --- T-30 --- T-18 T-16 T-7 mc
Louis Oosthuizen --- --- --- --- --- --- --- mc T-9 mc
Dustin Johnson --- --- --- --- --- T-48 T-40 T-8 T-23 mc
Bill Haas mc T-40 --- --- --- --- --- --- T-23 mc
Lucas Glover --- --- --- mc mc --- Won T-58 T-42 mc
Luke Donald --- --- T-57 T-12 mc wd mc T-47 T-45 mc
Bubba Watson --- mc --- --- T-5 mc T-18 --- T-63 mc
Geoff Ogilvy mc --- T-28 Won T-42 T-9 T-47 mc mc mc
Michael Campbell mc mc Won mc T-58 mc mc mc mc mc
Tim Clark mc T-13 T-3 mc T-17 T-48 T-40 T-12 --- mc
Brandt Snedeker --- --- mc --- T-23 T-9 mc T-8 T-11 ---
mc - Missed Cut
wd - Withdrew
--- - Did Not Play
dq - Disqualified
Sports Network Selections
Pick to Win - Adam Scott, Matt Kuchar, Luke Donald
Darkhorse - Sergio Garcia, Ernie Els, Hunter Mahan
Last Week's Pick to Win (Scott Stallings) - Tied for 2nd
Last Week's Darkhorse (John Rollins) - 6th
NOTES:
Can Tiger Woods win his 15th major title and first since winning the U.S. Open in 2008? Will Rory McIlroy bounce back from recent poor play to win his secondU.S. Open title and third major championship? Will Phil Mickelson win his fifth major and first U.S. Open? Can Adam Scott win his second straight major afterwinning the Masters in April? Will Webb Simpson become the first player since Curtis Strange in 1989 to win two straight U.S. Opens? Can Matt Kuchar, JustinRose, Brandt Snedeker, Luke Donald, Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia, Ian Poulter, Dustin Johnson or Steve Stricker break through and win their first major championship? These questions will all be answered this week as the world's best make the trek to Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pennsylvania as it hosts the U.S. Open for the fifth time.

World No.1 Woods is coming off his worst finish of the year last week at the Memorial, where he tied for 65th. However, he already has four victories on the season and is having his best year since 2009.

McIlroy is still looking for his first victory of 2013, following a brilliant 2012 in which he claimed five wins worldwide. He finished tied for 57th in his last start at the Memorial.

Scott won the Masters in April for his first major championship. He has a chance to become only the sixth player ever to win the Masters and U.S. Open titles in the same year. Ben Hogan (1951, 53) did it twice. The others were Craig Wood (1941), Arnold Palmer (1960), Jack Nicklaus (1972) and Woods (2002).

Kuchar is in outstanding form coming into the U.S. Open. He won the Memorial for his second victory of the season. Kuchar and Woods are the only multiple winners on tour this year. It is the first time in his career that Kuchar has won multiple times in one season. He is currently ranked No. 4 in the world, the highest he has been in his career.

The last back-to-back winner of the championship was Strange, who titled in 1988-89. Since 1991, only Graeme McDowell, Woods and Retief Goosen have finished better than 40th in trying to defend their Open crowns. McDowell finished tied for 14th in 2011; Goosen finished tied for 11th in 2005 after holding a 3-stroke lead after 54 holes; Woods finished 12th in 2001; he was tied for 20th in 2003; and tied for sixth in 2009.

An American has won this event in 22 of the last 31 years. Only South Africa's Ernie Els (1994, 97) and Goosen (2001, 04), New Zealand's Michael Campbell (2005), Australia's Geoff Ogilvy (2006), Argentina's Angel Cabrera (2007) and Northern Ireland's McDowell (2010) and McIlroy (2011) have won the title in that span. In the last 59 years, American players have captured 47 U.S. Opens.

Ten past champions are in the field - Cabrera, Campbell, Els, Jim Furyk, Lucas Glover, McDowell, McIlroy, Ogilvy, Simpson and Woods.

Not only will the winner receive a check for $1,440,000, but the victor also receives an Open exemption for the next 10 years, an invitation to the next five Masters, an invitation to the next five British Opens, an invitation to the next five PGA Championships, an invitation to the next five Players Championships and exempt status on the PGA Tour for the next five years.

The championship is open to any professional or amateur golfer with a USGA Handicap Index not exceeding 1.4. The deadline for entries was April 24th. The USGA accepted 9,860 entries this year, the highest total in history. The previous mark was set in 2009 when 9,086 entries were received for Bethpage Black.

Last year, Simpson carded his second straight 2-under 68 in the final round to come from behind and win. Simpson finished at 1-over-par 281 to win by one stroke over Michael Thompson and Graeme McDowell. He started the weekend tied for 29th, which means he came from farther back than any other champion since 1934.

In 2011, McIlroy rewrote the U.S. Open history book at Congressional. The 22-year-old Northern Irishman shot four rounds in the 60s and won by a staggering eight shots. He finished at 16-under 268, which set records for lowest score and lowest score in relation to par in U.S. Open history. McIlroy reached 17-under par, which was a first at the U.S. Open. He became the youngest winner of this championship since Bobby Jones in 1923. All totaled for the week, McIlroy broke or tied 12 U.S. Open records. He joined Lee Trevino and Lee Janzen as the only players ever to shoot four rounds in the 60s in regulation -- Trevino in 1968 and Janzen in 1993.

The 20 sub-par totals for 72 holes at Congressional Country Club in 2011 were the second-most all-time in U.S. Open history behind 28 sub-par totals at Medinah Country Club in 1990. The 108 sub-par rounds recorded were the second- most all-time behind the 124 at Medinah in 1990. The 32 sub-par scores in the final round are the most all-time, breaking the previous record of 18 at Baltusrol Golf Club in 1993.

Northern Ireland's McDowell became the first European in 40 years to win in 2010, shooting rounds of 71-68-71-74 for a 1-shot victory over Gregory Havret of France. Tony Jacklin was the last European player to win when he captured the event in 1970.

In 2009, Glover won exactly two weeks to the day after he qualified to play in it. Glover never even made a U.S. Open cut before 2009. Scratching his way to a 3-over 73 in the final round, he beat Mickelson, David Duval and Ricky Barnes by two shots at 4-under 276. Glover became only the sixth qualifier since 1960 to win. It was the second time Mickelson took runner-up on the Black course at Bethpage State Park, as he lost to Woods in 2002. Glover, No. 71 in the world when he arrived at Bethpage, became the fourth-lowest ranked golfer to win this event since the rankings were instituted in 1986.

Woods finally beat Rocco Mediate on the 91st hole on Monday's 2008 championship, ending a classic major championship with a par at the 19th hole of a playoff. Woods made a birdie to send the scheduled 18-hole playoff into sudden-death, then needed only a routine par at the next hole after Mediate bounced a bunker shot off the cart path and against the bleachers. It brought to an end one of the longest U.S. Opens in history, a tournament whose first four rounds played out in primetime on the East Coast. Millions watched one of Woods' most compelling victories. With his win in 2008, Woods recorded his ninth USGA national championship title, matching the record set by Bobby Jones.

Cabrera, from Argentina, won in 2007 with a 1-under 69 in the final round to hold off Woods and Furyk for his country's first major championship in 40 years. Cabrera ended at 5-over 285, carding two of the eight sub-70 rounds yielded by tough Oakmont all week, to beat Woods and Furyk by a shot. Roberto DeVicenzo won Argentina's only previous major championship at the 1967 British Open at Hoylake, but is probably best remembered for a scoring gaffe that cost him a chance to win the 1968 Masters. Furyk became the first player to post back-to-back second-place finishes since Palmer in 1966-67.

In 2006, Mickelson found a trash can, a tent, and yet another way to finish runner-up. Mickelson's try for a third straight major championship ended in a collapse at Winged Foot when he double-bogeyed the 18th hole to all but hand Ogilvy the win. Ogilvy chipped in for par at 17, made par from a sand divot on 18 and closed with a 2 over 72 to become the first Australian since David Graham in 1981 to win. He celebrated in front of a television monitor, having finished one group ahead of Mickelson. Ogilvy won by one shot over Mickelson, Furyk and Colin Montgomerie, who all stumbled down the stretch.

New Zealand's Campbell overcame a 4-shot deficit in 2005 and a hard charge from Woods in the final round to capture the title at Pinehurst No. 2. Campbell was the only one in the championship to finish at par or better with a 4-roud total of even-par 280. It was Campbell's first major victory and first title in the United States. Campbell joined Bob Charles as the only players from New Zealand to win major championships. Charles captured the 1963 British Open.

It's happened seven times, but only six players have won wire-to-wire: Walter Hagen (1914), James Barnes (1921), Hogan (1953), Jacklin (1970), Woods (2000, 2002) and McIlroy (2011)

The PGA Tour moves to Connecticut next week for the Travelers Championship, where Marc Leishman captured his first PGA Tour title last year.