The Loop

Pebble Beach follows Open trend: It's tough

June 17, 2010

How difficult was Pebble Beach during the U.S. Open's first round? For the fourth time in five years the opening day's scoring average exceeded 75. That all but guarantees the event will, for the fifth time in six years, rank as the PGA Tour season's hardest first round. Here's the recent breakdown:

2010: Pebble Beach (par 71), 75.289

2009: Bethpage (70), ranked first, 73.814

2008: Torrey Pines (71), ranked third, 75.581

2007: Oakmont (70), ranked first, 75.321

2006: Winged Foot (70), ranked first, 75.987

2005: Pinehurst (70), ranked first, 74.699

The only first-round averages to exceed Torrey Pines two years ago were the British Open (75.877 at par-70 Royal Birkdale) and PGA Championship (74.853 at par-70 Oakland Hills).

-- Brett Avery