124th U.S. Open

Pinehurst No. 2

The Loop

More thoughts as the postseason rolls on

__            Top 10 teams    Top 25 teams

__*East *              4                      8

(Top 25: Duke, Auburn, Wake Forest, Pepperdine, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Florida, TCU)

Central           3                      8

(Top 25: Arizona State, USC, Purdue, Michigan State, Georgia, Denver, New Mexico, Florida State)

West              3                      9

(Top 25: UCLA, Alabama, Arizona, Ohio State, Virginia, Stanford, LSU, California, Texas A&M)

Did ASU's "sick out" at Pac-10s cost them the No. 1 seed out West? Probably not. UCLA was already No. 1 in the Golfstat ranking before the conference championship, and the NCAA committee likely had the Bruins heading to Palo Alto already.

Duke getting the No. 1 seed in the East over Auburn might have been a surprise to some, but with Auburn the No. 2 seed out East, it's essentially a wash.

A) What took them so long to have a performance like this?

B) Does this group need the pressure of a postseason event to finally play to its potential?

C) If that's so, are the Cowboys a lock to get to the Elite Eight at the Honors Course?

D) If that's so, are the Cowboys vulnerable for a fall come nationals?


Regarding D ... I just wonder if a team that things it can simply turn the switch come the postseason could try to do that in Tennessee, only to find out that it's just not that easy to say, "OK, it's game time." Now, I actually think with the crew that Mike McGraw has, it might actually be that simple for them, but you're putting a lot of eggs in that "we'll be ready to play when it counts" basket. You can't chance history, so OSU can't go back and win a few more spring tournaments, but you do wonder if they had a little more momentum how much more confidence that would bring.

Then again, I'm guessing they have a lot of confidence.


By the school's admission, Hadley (right) struggled balance golf, school and his social life after find a girl friend while in school. More specifically to his game, he struggled on the greens with his putting, according to Heppler.

"He has really worked on his ball striking, but he couldn't make a thing [on the greens]," Heppler said. "We were out, had a practice [a week ago] Saturday, and James [White], who's a really, really good putter, watched him miss eight-footer after eight-footer. James said, 'Dude, you need to try this.' He made one adjustment to his set-up, and James said, 'Just rock your shoulders.'

"Chesson had a hard time keeping his wrists and hands out of his stroke. All of the sudden, you didn't recognize the guy putting."

Said Hadley: "It's fairly easy to drive the ball here, and if you get it in the fairway, you can get a lot of wedges into the greens. It's almost like a home-course advantage for us," explained Hadley, whose putting tip came from White. "To be a good putter, you've got to be all shoulder and no wrists. James told me to put the shaft of my putter in line with my forearms, and that eliminates the wrists from the stroke, I putted so well this week except for the last couple of holes. I made everything this week, it was unbelievable."


Vincenzo Salina, Georgetown

__The senior's eight-foot par putt on the final hole of the Big East Championship gave the Hoyas a one-stroke win at Innisbrook Resort in Florida, the team's first league title since 1998. It also put Salina, a native of Switzerland, into a four-way playoff, which he won with a 25-foot birdie on the first hole.


Caroline Hedwall, Oklahoma State

__With a six-under 210 at Jimmie Austin OU GC in Norman, Okla., the sophomore set the 54-hole scoring record at the Big 12 Championship, winning the individual title by eight over Baylor's Hannah Burke. It was Hedwall's fourth win of the 2009-10 season and her sixth straight top-five finish.