How Quickly They Forget, Vol. 8,139

"Shinnecock was generally regarded by all the players and everybody else as a fabulous U.S. Open - until Sunday morning," USGA president Walter Driver said during media day at Winged Foot Friday.

Driver might want to relive Saturday's infamous "rodean hole" press conference just to revise that slightly to, oh I don't know, until Friday night?

Q. Are you concerned that by the last group Maruyama and Mickelson, it really got scary? Maruyama's caddie was running to get the bag out of the way so Phil's second putt wouldn't go in the trap.

WALTER DRIVER: Yeah, obviously it was getting -- the wind was drying it out, they were putting downwind, downhill, downgrain, downworld, and it was very difficult to stop those putts. In fact, as I was standing there with the last group, I said to the person I was standing with that if Maruyama got that ball to the left of the hole, I didn't think it would stop, that he had to hit it up into the hill and hit a lag putt, and instead I think he hit a slightly aggressive putt with very unfortunate consequences.

We were trying to moderate the green and have been trying to moderate the design of the green since Tuesday, but we can't do anything about the wind and we can't do anything about the design of the hole.

Q. How did it happen that the guy rolled it this morning? How did that come about?

WALTER DRIVER: I don't know, I heard about it on the radio, because after I saw that, I called in and said I want to make sure that we did not roll that since Tuesday. I want that confirmed because I knew I would be here with you this evening. They called me back on the radio and said a member of the grounds staff had inadvertently rolled it notwithstanding the instructions not to. It will not happen tomorrow morning.

Q. If you should decide that something needs to be done, will even watering it help? Is there anything that can be done if the wind is in the same direction and you've got some concerns?

WALTER DRIVER: We'll look at it tomorrow morning. I've made arrangements to meet the staff at 8:00 o'clock on that hole.


And we know how productice that meeting was!