This U.S. Open has been a theater of pain.
Of course in one notable case it was self inflicted.
Phil Mickelson muffed his hometown, primetime moment, his penchant for turning simple algebra into advanced calculus as he preps for majors threatening to stifle his sublime talent
Rocco Mediates learned to mask the pain, physical and personal over the last two years, Roc only recently finding some peace, the back and head and heart all in sync.
Hes more complex than the friendly everyman hes so often portrayed as.
On the other hand, if everyman is the man you instantly like when you meet him, if everyman smiles and makes eye contact when you call his name, then yes Rocco Mediate, son of a barber from Western Pennsylvania, Rocco Mediate is your everyman.
He is by no means Superman. Tiger made this one of the most memorable majors in recent history. He made the highlight reels spin. He made this, the first prime time television Open, a gritty drama.
The heros down, the heros up, the heros out, the heros back.
Tigers fighting pain. Roccos fighting demons. Most of us are fighting something
Roccos favorite movie is Rocky and in the latest installment the old champ is asked why he keeps battling. And Stallones icon says, Because theres something left in the basement.
It is Roccos all time favorite movie line.
Tomorrow, Rocky in real life gets his big chance.
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