Jim Furyk Friday (Second Round)
Q. Seeing a lot of numbers in the black, what do you think the winning score is going to be out here?
JIM FURYK: It's going to depend on the setup. I thought the pins were very severe, I thought there was some hole locations that would have been unplayable, had they been dry and firm. So it's really, it's in the USGA's hands. It depends how they want to set it up. I think 5‑under could win it and I think 5‑over could win it. It all depends on the setup and I can't guess what they're going to do.
Q. Is this the toughest, shortest course from what you've seen?
JIM FURYK: The scores are reflective, the scores we shoot are much more reflective on the setup of the golf course. You could set Merion up to where 10‑over par would win and you could set Merion up where 10‑under would win. It depends on how they set the golf course up.
And they were very protective of it. I think where they hid the pin placements, how they backed the tees up on some of the longer holes, I felt like they were definitely protective of par.
It's a wonderful old golf course. It goes to show you, we play ‑‑ my favorite course that we play regularly on the PGA TOUR is Hilton Head and it's right there around 7,000 as well and our scores aren't overly low there, if the wind blows a little bit, just like here. That's on a benign setup with no rough.
So I think it's a testament to a golf course that it doesn't have to be 7,800 yards to be a great golf course and Merion will always stand the test of time.
Q. This is disappointing, obviously, but even more so because you're playing in your own backyard.
JIM FURYK: Absolutely. You always want to do well. I never really played well at the tournaments that were at Aronimink or when they were at Waynesboro, we had a couple events there. I had four events in the Philly area and I never really played well in any of those.
And then to come back here is a bummer. I played well across the state at Oakmont for a couple of championships, but yeah, I wanted to, obviously, later in my career at 43, there's not going to be another tournament here at Merion through my career, at least not maybe until the Champions Tour. And yeah, I wanted to play well, but obviously sometimes you press, you try a little too hard, and as I said there was a lot of things that went astray in my game. So I can't really blame it on one thing.
I thought myself around the golf course poorly, I putted poorly, I drove the ball poorly, I just ‑‑ just things you can't do at a U.S. Open.
Q. Outside of that, the way this is setup here, being in the Philadelphia area, the fans and the charm of the golf course, how special is this event here at Merion this week?
JIM FURYK: It was just a lot of history here. I think that this is the 18th USGA event at this club. It's hosted more than any other.
You go back through the history, Jones won the Grand Slam here. There's a lot of logistic issues, as far as getting us in and out, and the rain delays didn't help that, but we're staying a mile and a half away at the locker room and it's awkward from that perspective.
But I'm so glad, being from this area, playing junior golf in the Philadelphia area, I'm glad that I had the opportunity to come play here. I'm glad that Merion was able to showcase the golf course this week.
Q. If 2003 was the pinnacle of your U.S. Open experience, where would you rank this one?
JIM FURYK: Definitely towards the bottom. I'm not sure I've thrown up two worse scores. I don't think I've played worse for 36 holes. So towards the bottom.
But I'll be honest with you, Oakmont, Winged Foot, and The Olympic Club were far more disappointing to get so close and I felt like I got kicked in the stomach for all three of those, to lose by a shot or two when I could have won.
So, miss the cut by one, miss the cut by 40, it doesn't really matter. But you lose an event by one or two, and it sticks with you for awhile.