And Now, About Rickie's Impressive Year...

Maybe he was tired, maybe he was humbled, maybe he just felt the need to talk softly, but listening to Rickie Fowler after his four rounds in the 60s at Hoylake, including a closing 67, he sounded like a man humbled by the Open Championship loss to Rory McIlroy.

But it's that humility which should bode well for his continued improvement that has him on the cusp of something grand. I summed up his week in this Loop item, including his leading the field in birdies.

Ian O'Connor had this to say about Fowler:

He shot 5-under 67 playing in the final pairing of the final round of the Open Championship, 4 strokes better than McIlroy's number, and was left to console himself with the knowledge that he'd virtually locked up a spot on the U.S. Ryder Cup team.

Fowler also earned a piece of history he'd probably rather give back: Ernie Els (twice) and Jesper Parnevik are the only other players to score in the 60s in all four rounds of the Open Championship and fail to win.