Mike Davis - June 19, 2012


USGA Executive Director Mike Davis has held the position since May 2011 and among other responsibilities is in charge of the course setup at the U.S. Open. He likes to have flexible yardages on holes during the U.S. Open as he feels that it is crucial to the success of the tournament to be able to react to course conditions and other considerations. The final round is the most important time of the Championship and after watching the success of moving the tee up at 16 during the final of the 2007 U.S. Amateur at The Olympic Club, he decided to do the same thing at the U.S. Open this year and Davis feels that it was successful.

He has heard very little from the players about the decision to move the tee up at 16 for the final round. During the final round, he was walking with the final group of Jim Furyk and Graeme McDowell and obviously Furyk did not hit a good shot off of the tee. While you hope you make all of the right decisions during the U.S. Open, your success or failure is very subjective based on what others thinks. Davis says that he always evaluates his decisions at the end of a Championship to see what he could have done better and without exception there is something that he could have done better every time. However, he feels that he made the right choice with the tee position at 16 on Sunday.

During the trophy presentation, an anti-deforestation protester interrupted the proceedings and everything was happening so fast that he knew he had to do something to resume order.  He made the decision to literally pull him off of the green himself so the ceremony could resume and fortunately they were able to. Security is always a big issue at the U.S. Open and while he does not want to say or think that there was not enough security around the green on Sunday, he did say that the USGA will look into making some changes for the future in regards to the security presence.