Five days after earning a spot in the U.S. Open, Jason Millard disqualified himself after he admitted to grounding his club in a bunker during a sectional qualifier.
Millard carded rounds of 68-68 Monday at Colonial Country Club in Memphis, Tenn., and qualified by a shot. Saturday he admitted that on the 27th hole of his 36-hole qualifier he grounded his club in a greenside bunker on the 18th hole of Colonial's North Course.
"I'm pretty sure I grounded my club in the bunker," Millard told the USGA. "I didn't see anything for sure, but I felt something and i saw a small indentation. It happened so fast, I really don't know 100 percent but deep down, I believe I did.
"I couldn't find peace about it. For five days, I practiced and I couldn't get it off my mind."
Millard will be replaced at Pinehurst by amateur Sam Love, who was the second alternate from the qualifier in Memphis. Scott Langley, who was first alternate from Colonial, got in earlier this week when Richard Sterne withdrew.
Millard, 24, played his college golf at Middle Tennessee State and missed the cut at the Honda Classic in March in his lone start this year on the PGA Tour.
Had he called the penalty during qualification, Millard would have had two shots added to his total and would have missed out on a playoff by one shot.
“It’s heart-breaking, but what I was feeling in my heart didn’t feel right,” Millard said. “It’s the right decision and I am sticking with it.”