USGA chief Davis address 16th hole, Bird Man


The U.S. Golf Association wasn’t too pleased that Rory McIlroy made a mockery of Congressional during his U.S. Open romp a year ago. This year, the USGA and chief Mike Davis couldn’t have been happier with the outcome at The Olympic Club.

The most controversial call of the week was the decision to move the tee box up 100 yards on the par-5 16th hole on Sunday. Some players – namely Jim Furyk – weren’t too pleased when they got to the 16th tee to discover how drastically different the hole looked.

“We think one of the elements of the test for a national championship is the ability to react at the moment to a golf course setup,” Davis said when he joined “Morning Drive” on Tuesday. “While we don’t want inconsistencies with green firmness or green speeds we like the idea of mixing up teeing grounds because it really does make them think.

“In the case of Sunday it certainly made them think at a very important time in the championship. In some players case it made a difference.”

Davis made more of a name for himself Sunday after the championship was over when he stepped front and center and escorted the now infamous Bird Man off the 18th tee (Davis pictured above right) when he interrupted trophy ceremony with newly-minted champion Webb Simpson.

“It all happened so quickly,” Davis said. “All of a sudden this fellow shows up.

“I just didn’t want it to take away from Webb’s moment. We cannot let this ruin Webb’s big moment. So without really thinking too much I went out and grabbed him. As I’m dragging him off the green I thought, ‘What am I going to do with him now?’ I escorted him right into the bunker and quickly thereafter the police did get him.”