Oakmont: It Still All May Come Down To 17th Hole

While Shane Lowry holds a four-stroke lead and would appear tough to beat, it's the U.S. Open and there is a volatile short par-4 awaiting down the stretch. While the flyovers and early feedback suggested there wasn't much reward for driving it, the players who have done so have been rewarded statistically.

Here's my preview of the 17th hole, which will feature the same 16 back, three-from-the-left hole location as 2007. But unlike 2007, players are either suddenly a whole lot better or a lot longer, because even with the rains, the improvement in Greens In Regulation leaps are startling.

A preview of Oakmont's 17th after three rounds also includes a link to Fox's excellent recap of the hole featuring Holly Sonders, Gil Hanse and Mark Brooks.