U.S. Open: Facts, figures at Merion
ARDMORE, Pa. — Facts and figures for the 113th U.S. Open golf championship:
Dates: June 13-16
Site: Merion Golf Club
The course: Merion's East course was designed by Hugh Wilson and opened in May 1914. Wilson had never designed a course, and he traveled to Scotland and England before returning to build Merion. Its Scottish-styled bunkers are known as the "white faces of Merion." Unique to Merion are the red wicker baskets attached to the pins, instead of the traditional flag. The origin of the baskets remains a mystery, although Wilson is said to have thought of the idea during his British trip. Merion has hosted 18 USGA championships, the most of any golf course. This is its first U.S. Open since 1981.
Length: 6,996 yards
Cut: Top 60 and ties and anyone within 10 strokes of the lead after 36 holes.
Playoff (if necessary): 18 holes on June 17.
Field: 156 players
Purse: TBA ($8 million in 2012).
Defending champion: Webb Simpson.
Last year: Webb Simpson closed with a 2-under 68 at The Olympic Club for a one-shot victory over Graeme McDowell and Michael Thompson to capture his first major. McDowell had a 25-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole that would have forced a playoff. Jim Furyk was tied for the lead with three holes to play until he bogeyed two of the last three holes. Simpson finished at 1-over 281.
Last time at Merion: David Graham became the first Australian to win the U.S. Open when he closed with a 67 to make up a three-shot deficit against George Burns. He was the first U.S. Open champion in 11 years with par or better all four rounds.
U.S. Open champions at Merion: Olin Dutra (1934), Ben Hogan (1950), Lee Trevino (1971), David Graham (1981).
Noteworthy: Only five of the top 20 players in the world ranking at the start of the year have won on the PGA Tour this season.
Quoteworthy: "Everything is tested in the U.S. Open." — Tiger Woods.
Key statistic: This is the eighth time in the last nine years of the U.S. Open that at least one hole was longer than 600 yards. The exception was Pebble Beach in 2010.
Key coincidence: The winning score for the U.S. Open has gone down each of the four times it has been played at Merion.
Tiger tales: This is the first time since 2000 that Tiger Woods has won four times on the PGA Tour before the U.S. Open. He won the U.S. Open that year by 15 shots.
Television (all times EDT): Thursday and Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., ESPN; 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., NBC Sports; 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., ESPN. Saturday and Sunday, noon to 7:30 p.m., NBC Sports.