Is the U.S. Open too boring? Certainly it’s magnitude of being among the upper echelon events in all of American sports is unquestioned. But, to have success in the U.S. Open, it’s more about playing defense than offense. In football terms, it’s three yards and a cloud of dust. The scores are usually high…not too many birdies…and even fewer iron shots stuck to within a few feet. The USGA is too sadistic to allow that. But maybe there is a different allure. Like a hockey fight or a crash in NASCAR, perhaps seeing a guy go completely off the rails with a lost ball and a crooked number is oddly alluring. Guaranteed – you’ll see a lot more of that this week at Chambers Bay (University Place, Washington) than you will driver, 3-iron into a par-5, setting up a 12-foot eagle putt. Whatever the case, boring or not, it is the U.S. Open. And many successes in life require more grind than glamour. Steady, not flashy, will win this weekend on the shores of the Puget Sound. And for the one guy left standing on Sunday following a 4-day diet of fairways, greens, and pars? Boring’s just fine…so long as it comes with the trophy, and the check.
Tom James is a 2-time Edward R. Murrow Award-winning sportscaster, who does play-by-play & studio work for the ESPN Family of Networks (including ESPN Wide World of Sports, ESPN3, college football, basketball, & a wide array of other sports), CBS Sports Network, Lax Sports Network, & Pro Watercross. Tom also hosts and produces sports documentaries & is part of the weekly regionally syndicated college football radio show, "Southern Pigskin Tonight."