The USGA frequently gets creative with its pairings for the first and second rounds of the U.S. Open, often putting together a couple of threesomes that all played at the same college, among other things. This year, that creativity extended to the amateurs in the field. In the 7 a.m. group (first off in the 109th Open), Oklahoma State's Rickie Fowler will play with former Cowboys Casey Wittenberg and Bo Van Pelt (hopefully, for coach Mike McGraw's sake, Wittenberg won't convince Fowler that it's fine to leave school early).
Similarly, the 1:03 p.m. time Thursday has Clemson's Kyle Stanley playing alongside former Tigers Lucas Glover and D.J. Trahan. (For the entire list of tee times, click here.)
On the surface such pairings might not seem like a big deal, but considering how much more comfortable they'll likely make Fowler and Stanley feel, it could help these two amateurs as they try to make the cut at Bethpage next week.