Winners and losers from a great U.S. Open week

All weekend, Shane Bacon will be out at Congressional, thanks to the fine people at Lexus (buy a Lexus ... and buy Jay one as well!). He will be reporting from the course (on crutches), so check back on both Saturday and Sunday.

BETHESDA, Md. -- The U.S. Open has ended, but it has left us some great winners and some equally as disappointing losers. Here are five each.


Rory McIlroy: Obviously. What else can we say about this kid? The dude's cruise control was better than everyone else smashing as hard as they could on the gas. His play at Congressional will be remembered for decades, as it should, and his imprint on the game of golf after this major win could really change the dynamic.

Jason Day: The "old dude" compared to Rory (Day's 23, Rory 22) has now finished in the top 10 in three of his first four majors. He was second at Augusta, and really put together a fantastic weekend at Congressional after some shaky early rounds. Day will win his major soon I reckon, but for now, he's just another in a long list of young players with miles of skill. And he knows it.

Sergio Garcia: We can talk about the fall of Sergio all we want (And trust me, we have), but Garcia has continued to play well at majors, as we saw this week. His T7 is his fourth top 10 at the U.S. Open, and shows that when that putter gets hot, he can still claim one of the big four, and probably will.

Robert Rock: No practice round, no problem for Rock, who finished in the top 25 in his first-ever major in the states. Rock let it get away from him a little on Saturday, but a final-round 68 got him back in the mix (relatively), and worth his time with the Visa crew.

Tiger Woods' legacy: What, he didn't play? No matter, Tiger's legacy grows as people continue to compare McIlroy's play here to what Tiger did at the 2000 U.S. Open. People will dispute who played better, Rory or Tiger, and most will go with Woods, which only makes him look better in the long run.


Phil Mickelson: I'm honestly a little scared for Phil's health, even if he tells us different. It seems at the end of his rounds Phil gets fatigued, as we saw with his four double-bogeys over the last three holes throughout the week. No matter his health, he didn't play well or smart, and his water ball on the 72nd hole ended just like he started the week; in the bottom of Congressional's lake.

Bubba Dickerson: The '01 U.S. Amateur winner opened the championship with a 70, and looked to cruise to his first-ever made cut in a major, but his second-round 81 was lowlighted by a back nine on Friday that included eight bogeys and one double-bogey. He missed the cut by four.

Henrik Stenson: He didn't have a bad week by any means at Congressional, but the temper-tantrum he threw at the 15th on Sunday, when Stenson snapped a club and cut his own hand, was bad for him and bad for the game. There's a time to get frustrated, and a U.S. Open when you have no shot at winning isn't it.

The Golf Boys: If you come out with a music video acting like complete fools for fun, you better back it up in the next tournament, and the Golf Boys, consisting of Ben Crane, Rickie Fowler, Hunter Mahan and Bubba Watson, sure didn't. Watson was the only one that made the cut, and that was a T63.

Tiger Woods' future: We're forgetting about the now version of Tiger with every young player that wins, and every story that pushes him out of the game. Him not being at this major, while McIlroy made history, just reminds us that while he was extremely special, there will be another dominant force at some point, and that might be now.

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