Golf Channel Mobile
Golf Channel
Big Break Invitational - Match Play View Tee Times >
  • Robles
  • 12:40 PM ET
  • Stoelting
  • Long
  • 12:50 PM ET
  • Silvers
  • Brown
  • 1:00 PM ET
  • McPherson
  • Cooper
  • 1:10 PM ET
  • Gillespie
  • Welch
  • 1:20 PM ET
  • Parks
  • Byrne
  • 1:30 PM ET
  • Leon
  • Nolan
  • 1:40 PM ET
  • Talley
  • Eger
  • 1:50 PM ET
  • Gainey
  • Kenoyer
  • 2:00 PM ET
  • Piller
  • Peters
  • 2:10 PM ET
  • Finau
Prev Next

GFC Search


McIlroy tunes up for Open with Nicklaus meeting


PINEHURST, N.C. – Rory McIlroy tuned up for this week’s U.S. Open by spending a few hours with the most prolific major winner of them all.

Last week in North Palm Beach, Fla., McIlroy had a two-hour conversation with Jack Nicklaus, and they talked about business, golf, branding. Everything.

The 25-year-old was just a week removed from a head-scratching performance at the Memorial Tournament – at Jack’s event – where he opened with 63, barely made the cut and eventually finished in a tie for 15th.

McIlroy and Nicklaus had lunch at Muirfield Village, and Rory hoped that they could arrange a longer sit-down. He was originally scheduled to have dinner at Nicklaus’ house last Tuesday, but his stay at Pinehurst went a little longer than intended. He settled for a Wednesday morning meeting at Nicklaus' office in North Palm Beach.

“He’s been really generous with his time with me, offered any sort of advice that I wanted or needed. He’s been great,” McIlroy said Wednesday at Pinehurst. “To have that at my disposal, it has to be an advantage in some way.”

Perplexing to Nicklaus – and the rest of us – is McIlroy’s scoring trend this season. He’s first on Tour in Round 1 scoring (67.63), but 192nd – third-to-last – in second-round average (73.5). He has recorded a nine-hole score of 40 or worse in each of his past four Tour events.

During their meeting last week, Nicklaus asked McIlroy: “How the hell can you shoot 63 and then 78?” – which is what he did at the Memorial.

“He said to me that he was never afraid to change things up in the middle of a round if it wasn’t going well,” McIlroy said. “He’d make a swing change right then and there. The mental strength to be able to do that and trust what you’re doing ...”