The Loop

Dustin Johnson mismanages the clock

February 17, 2011

PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. -- The first hole at the Riviera Country Club is reasonably easy, a reachable par 5 on which bogey or worse generally is in play only by hooking your ball out of bounds. Or by arriving late for your tee time.

Dustin Johnson was late enough to incur a two-stroke penalty that resulted in a double-bogey seven on Thursday. And here's the capper: He was on the premises. His tee time for the first round of the Northern Trust Open was 7:32, but, according to a PGA Tour spokesman, he was under the assumption it was 7:52. When he finally discovered his error, he made a sprint for the first tee, which, incidentally, only a well-conditioned athlete can do. A steep hill must be climbed to reach the first tee from the driving range here.

Johnson arrived on the tee four minutes, 54 seconds late, six seconds short of a disqualification. One second late results in a penalty, five minutes late in a DQ. The penalty set the tone for his day; he bogeyed the second hole and doubled the 10th en route to a two-over par 73.

-- John Strege