June 15, 2008–Torrey Pines–10:30 AM PST–To say that the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines (pictured) will go down as a huge success is probably a bit of an understatement. From nearly all accounts, it appears to have gone off without a hitch, and the combination of the weather, area, golf course, and everything else made U.S. Open 2008 one for the history books. The following is a collection of notes, quotes and other anecdotes from this year's national golf championship. Three of the six golfers with Las Vegas golf ties made the cut, and Las Vegas' Butch Harmon had five players he teaches in the field (Stuart Cink, Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els, Adam Scott, Nick Watney) and all made the cut. Former UNLV golfer Chad Campbell was in 35th position at +7 entering the final round while Scott, another former Rebel, was at + 8, and Watney, a new resident, was at +12. And Las Vegas physical therapist Keith Kleven was the caretaker of the world's most famous knee. Photo courtesy of USGA.org. Read on …
"Well, it won," Las Vegas' Craig Barlow after missing the cut. The 'it' was the golf course.
"I come from the East Coast, man. We don't putt on sponges like this. So it's tough for me to come up here and putt on poa. It's really tough for a lot of East Coast guys. And I think there's some other things that factor into it. But needless to say, the golf course doesn't suit me very well, and I don't care for it very much."–DJ Trahan, among the leaders and one of the few detractors of anything this week.
"I thought it was great and the reason I'm so proud is that, this is my hometown and everybody out here was so respectful. There wasn't any derogatory remarks. Whether they pulled for any of the three of us, everybody was really cool today. I was very proud to be from here." San Diego native Phil Mickelson, following the second round.
"No, it's not easier (than other US Open courses). A couple guys were talking yesterday, one or two of the instructors, how guys are saying the course is easy. I haven't seen easy out here. There's not one hole out here where you can fall asleep."–Rocco Mediate, second-place following third-round.
"If one word was used to sum up the 2008 U.S. Open, it would probably be the term, "Fair." But then you look at the leaderboard and see that there are only three players under par, seemingly just like any other US Open. So maybe the best words would be "Fair but difficult."–Brian Hurlburt, GolfLasVegasNow.com
"The golf course is starting to show some claws …," Johnny Miller, NBC.
"It's going to take a ridiculous round by one of us to beat him. If we go out and shoot 4- or 5-under par one of us, you never know. But you can't ever count anything. It's just you can't really predict anything that's going to happen." Rocco Mediate.
"I think it's an exciting Open. I'm certainly disappointed that I'm not in the mix right now. That was the goal. So I'm going to come out tomorrow, enjoy my final round. And Bethpage is one of the best places ever — one of the best memories in the game of golf I've ever had. I get to go back there next year for the U.S. Open. So I'm excited about the chance to try to break through and win my first U.S. Open there." Phil Mickelson, after his third round that included a 9 on the par 5, 13th hole.
"This is a great golf course. Certainly it is a true muni, the first time we've had the U.S. Open, the people's championship on a true municipal venue. And Mark Woodward and his team have done a terrific job in bringing it to the condition that it's in today." USGA Executive Jim Hyler.
Question: "Mayor Sanders, there was a lot of criticism or some criticism about the deal that was made with the USGA back when it was made that the City didn't get its fair share. I know the deal was made before you were Mayor, I believe Councilman Peters was there. Could you comment on that? Do you think the City — after you analyzed the deal do you think the City got it's fair share?" San Diego reporter's question.
Response: "I don't think we can even begin to estimate what the return to the City will be from a week of advertising and shooting on locations here and really advertising every part of San Diego. That's never part of any deal when you work out the dollars and cents. But in terms of people who come to San Diego to vacation, which is a huge market for San Diego, we're one of the top three or four tourist destinations in the country, this really brings a lot of people to San Diego, so the impact goes over for a long time." San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders.