Phil Mickelson latest to slam USGA before U.S. Open: 'They don't know how to control themselves'

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Phil Mickelson is the latest golfer to slam the USGA ahead of the U.S. Open next month, and is hoping for some rain at Pebble Beach.
Phil Mickelson is the latest golfer to slam the USGA ahead of the U.S. Open next month, and is hoping for some rain at Pebble Beach. (Getty Images)

The United States Golf Association has drawn a lot of criticism over the years for its handlings of the U.S. Open — and this year is no different.

An article published in Golf Digest highlighted those complaints this week, which featured dozens of anonymous complaints from prominent members of the golf world about one of the biggest events of the year.

Phil Mickelson joined in on the criticism this week, too, following his opening round at the Memorial Tournament.

Mickelson — who fired a second-round 79 on Friday at Muirfield Village and failed to make the cut — thinks that errant weather will be the only thing to save the event next month at Pebble Beach.

“I've played, what, 29 U.S. Opens? One hundred percent of time they have messed it up if it doesn't rain,” Mickelson said, via the Golf Channel. “The rain is the governor. That's the only governor that they have. And if they don't have a governor they don't know how to control themselves.

“It’s just based on history. It’s my 30 years, and 30 years before that. I think we’re all pulling for a little rain.”

Mickelson has yet to win a U.S. Open, which is the final event he needs to capture the career grand slam and join an elite class of golfers. The 48-year-old knows he’s running out of time, however.

With the event being at Pebble Beach — a course where he’s had great success in the past, including at this year’s AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, which he won — the 45-time Tour winner knows he has a great opportunity in front of him.

“The difficulty is that when you’re in your 20s you feel like you have multiple chances,” Mickelson said Thursday, via Golf.com. “And when you’re turning 49, you’re like I’ve got two more chances, this year, and maybe Winged Foot, and that’s about it.

“With that being the only one in the four that I haven’t won, and what it would offer me and how I look at my career, I put more pressure on it. That’s the difficult thing.”

Mickelson has certainly accomplished more than most in his storied golf career.

Capturing the career grand slam, though, would be the perfect conclusion.

“It’s just that it would be pretty special to be part of the elite players that have won all four,” Mickelson said, via Golf.com. “To me that’s the sign of a complete game.”

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