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FARMINGDALE, N.Y. ' There wasnt a cut at the 109th U.S. Open on Friday. May not trim the field until the summer solstice if the weatherman has Saturdays forecast correct.
But we here at Cut Line play by none of the staid rules that govern U.S. Golf Association championships, no need for 36 to trim the field or 72 to crown a champion. All we need is a wireless connection and some questionable, curious and commendable happenings.
Made Cut
  • Phil Mickelson: Playing with a heavy heart with your attention split between the most demanding golf in the game and your ailing wife three time zones away is never easy. That Lefty posted a 1-under 69 in Round 1 that could have just as easily been a 66 is a testament to his talent and his desire to deliver that silver trophy Amy Mickelson requested.
    Phil faded late Friday, starting his second 18 even par through 11 holes, but he added another chapter to his New York legacy.
  • USGA: Set-up man Mike Davis has been given plenty of credit for bringing a level of pragmatism to the national championship. Graduated rough and tee box options are the tools of the trade and the payoff is a grudging respect from Tour pros normally more than happy to knee-cap Open set ups.
    Maybe the greatest measure of set-up success is the potpourri of a leaderboard after two disjointed rounds. Mike Weir and David Toms, tied at third and 34th, respectively, are the type of players who used to win the national championship. While Gary Woodland and Ricky Barnes have never met a hole they couldnt dismantle with a single, soaring drive and are tied for 12th and second, respectively.
  • NYC galleries: The media has had big fun with jokes at the expense of Phil Mickelsons waistline, but the NYC galleries had no trouble hoisting the big man on their shoulders Friday.
    Despite an unsteady finish, five boroughs worth of the faithful cheered and pleaded Mickelson all the way around on Friday. Gotta win it for us, Phil, one man yelled. There hasnt been that kind of performance anxiety since Cosmo Kramer of Seinfeld fame promised a sick child Yankees slugger Paul ONeil would hit him two dingers in a single game because, as the funnyman reasoned, two homeruns are better than one.

    Made Cut ' Did not finish (MDF)
  • Adam Scott: The Aussie teed off in Rounds 1 and 2 at last years Open shoulder-to-shoulder with the world Nos. 1 and 2 in a perfect-for-prime-time pairing. So far this year hes played like a guy who should be sleeping in his car to get a tee time on the Black.
    Scott has missed seven of his last eight weekends on Tour and has been a nonstory at the majors since 2006, having not finished in the top 10 in his last nine Grand Slam starts.
    Scott is on a roll at Bethpage, sitting tied for sixth through 29 holes, but he needs to start capitalizing to keep from becoming the young phenom who has flopped.
  • USGA: Amid all the good will Davis & Co. have wrought with the new user-friendly set ups, the association seems bent on rubbing folks the wrong way.
    Among the gaffes, the USGA announced the mens and womens Opens will be played at Pinehursts No. 2 Course in 2014 in consecutive weeks. Thats fine for the men, but take a look at Bethpage this week. The beautiful park has been transformed into a muddy mess. Which means the women may be left with a No. 2 that resembles, well, No. 2.
    The USGAs dogmatic devotion to never allowing players to lift, clean and place their golf balls regardless of monsoons or mud is also curious. You want 72 holes to crown a champion? Fine. Lift, clean and place will speed up play and make a well-placed drive in the middle of a fairway mean something.
    (On Tour) we probably would have played it up before the start of the first round given the forecast, Zach Johnson said. We try to be practical about the situation, but you accept it and go play.

    Missed Cut
  • Bethpage Opens: The Black is unquestionably a brilliant test to determine a major champion, is arguably the nations preeminent muni and the proximity to such a large metropolitan area is always a bonus.
    But the out-and-back routing is a logistical nightmare, the weather in consecutive Bethpage Opens has had far too much impact on the outcome and the traffic is unbearable.
    If the USGA is married to keeping the Black in the Open rota may we humbly suggest they dig it up and move it to Southern California.
  • USGA ticket policy: In a Cut Line first, the association won, placed and no-showed in this weeks edition thanks to its Thursday ticket faux pas.
    After Thursdays rains washed Round 1 into Long Island Sound, officials originally said there would be no make-goods for first-day ticket holders because enough golf had been played. Who knew the USGA was a fan of the 11-hole round?
    Less than 24 hours later the USGA caved under intense criticism, reversing its policy and allowing Thursdays jilted ticket holders access to Mondays round. Seems the U.S. Open has its first scheduled Monday finish.

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    Related Links:
  • Full U.S. Open Scores
  • Full Coverage - The 109th U.S. Open
  • Golf Channel Airtimes