14 June 2007

US Open Preview

The U.S. Open starts today. Big golf tournament, in case you didn’t know. Kind of famous. Kind of a big deal. People know about it. Wow, I’ve been watching too much Family Guy and Anchorman – I’m starting to talk like the love child of Stewie Griffin and Ron Burgundy.

Early reviews have focused on a few issues, especially the difficulty of the course and Phil Mickelson’s wrist injury. To me, however, both of these are nonissues. Whether the tournament is held on a muni course (as seemed, to some extent to be the case last year) or on the beaches of some uncharted, magnetically sealed island will make little difference – everyone plays the same course. And, quite frankly, I’m sick and tired of people adoring Lefty. It’s getting annoying.

No. I’m going to do something original, something earth-shatteringly innovative. I’m going to predict the winner. But wait! It gets crazier: I’m actually going to pick a player that none of the ESPN people and none of the SI people chose: Chris DiMarco. Why? Here are two reasons.

First: He’s good. 97th in driving accuracy, 147th in distance. 66th in putting accuracy. 154th in scoring. Those are some big numbers. On first glance, you may be a bit nonplussed. But look deeper, spin the numbers a little bit: he’s top 100 in driving accuracy – in the world. He’s top 150 in driving distance – in the world. Isn’t it crazy how a little bit of spin can make even terrible situations look good? But enough politics – we see enough of that on CNN.

Second: He’s from UF. And it’s the U.S. Open Championship. In the wake of football and basketball titles, and of Billy Donovan spurning the Magic, can a Gator really fail to win another national championship? Logic, and karma, don’t get any tighter than that.

So enjoy the tournament, in whatever way you choose. Responsibly, of course. And when Chris DiMarco lifts that trophy and walks away with the $1.25 million dollar first prize, grin and know that 90% Mental predicted it. If by some strange chance he should come up short (though, of course, that could never happen) ... oh, well - at least I was right about the NBA finals being competitive.

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