PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (AP) — The leaders at the USGA aren’t the only ones who want to get it right at this U.S. Open.
Brooks Koepka would like to: He could win his fifth major and become the first person in 114 years to win three U.S. Opens in a row.
Tiger Woods would like to: He could write another chapter in an amazing comeback that culminated with a win at the Masters this year.
Phil Mickelson would like to: Turning 49 on Sunday, he’s in search of a U.S. Open title to complete the career grand slam — and nobody plays better at Pebble Beach, the scene of five of his wins on the PGA Tour.
Pebble Beach. It is, quite possibly, the quintessential U.S. Open venue — its gorgeous seaside settings steeped in history, its list of champions — Nicklaus, Watson and Woods among them — a veritable Mount Rushmore of golf.
To make it anything less than perfect, it seems, would take work.
But the USGA has shown a knack, especially over the last four years, for overrunning the U.S. Open with its own fractured story lines, either through mismanaged course setups (Chambers Bay, Erin Hills, Shinnecock) or rules dust-ups (Dustin Johnson at Oakmont).
There is pressure, they admit, to get it…