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U.S. Open qualifying lets in a few, leaves out some big names

Jay Busbee
Devil Ball Golf

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Davis Love III will be in another U.S. Open. (Getty Images)

Monday was the longest day of the golf year, and for many, the most dramatic. U.S. Open sectional qualifying is the 36-hole last-ditch hope for several well-known names and dozens of unknowns to reach one of the great events in all of sports. Sure, the galleries are less crowded than your average bar on a Tuesday afternoon, but there's more drama than most four-day tournaments.

While the qualifying isn't done -- most play at Memphis was rained out and will conclude on Tuesday -- Let's take a quick look at many of the big names who did (and didn't) make the cut to play at Olympic in a couple weeks, shall we?

Casey Martin: The winner of a landmark 2001 Supreme Court lawsuit allowing him to use a cart in competition. He'll get his own profile in just a bit.

Dennis Miller: Won his way in with the best putt since Tiger Woods at Augusta's 16th half a decade ago.

Davis Love III: The Ryder Cup captain jumped from 16th at Memorial to shoot a 139 over 36 holes in Ohio, qualifying for the third time in six years.

Steve Marino, Rod Pampling, D.A. Points, Charlie Wi, Kevin Streelman: These well-known names played their way into the tournament via the Ohio qualifier. Wi won the Ohio event by three strokes.

Ben Curtis: The former British Open champ fell short in his bid to play in another major.

Rory Sabbatini, Spencer Levin: This is the cruelest cut of all. Both of these guys had a chance to win on Sunday at The Memorial, and both fell short. And then both fell apart in qualifying. Levin has a chance to make it in if he can get into the world top 60 after this weekend at Memphis.

Jordan Spieth: Missed a five-foot birdie putt in a playoff that would have put him in the Open.

J.B. Holmes, Ryan Moore, Jhonattan Vegas, Johnson Wagner: These known names, all with PGA Tour success, didn't make it out of qualifying.

Chad Campbell, Jeff Maggert, Lee Janzen, Arjun Atwal, Justin Leonard, David Duval, Brian Gay: These players are among the crew playing in Memphis on Tuesday.

The U.S. Open is the greatest event in golf from the perspective that you or I could play in it. But if we expected to and then fell short? Nightmare.

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