Falling victim to the Rules of Golf
By Bernie D'Amato under US Open
Tough call (©USGA/Scott A. Miller)

Tough call (©USGA/Scott A. Miller)

Landon Michelson did everything wrong, and then he did everything right. That’s what happens when you take the commendable position of disqualifying yourself after signing for a lower score.

Scorecard infractions are unique to the sport of golf. If you sign for a higher score and leave the scoring area, then the score stands. However, if you sign for a lower score and leave the scoring area, then you are DQ’d.

Landon Michelson recently graduated from Rice University, and put himself in an extremely difficult position by signing for a two-under 70, instead of a one-under 71 during the afternoon round of U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying in Vero Beach, Florida. The 70 would have given Landon a ticket to the U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2 next week.

To Landon’s credit, he came forward, got DQ’d, and spoke about his state of mind afterwards, “Today was one of the first rounds I’ve ever been like, super focused,” Michelson said (via GolfChannel.com). “I didn’t even know what I was at, to be honest with you. The guy (in scoring) told me I shot 70 and I was like, ‘Yeah, sounds right.’ Looking over it, Chris and I went over it and it was a 71.”

Chris Ingham was Landon’s caddie for the day, and he encouraged his friend to explain what happened to the scoring officials. The DQ gave Aron Price, who played on the PGA Tour in 2009, the final spot.

Landon made the correct decision, but I feel for him because everything had to go wrong for this to happen. He made the worst mistake by not catching the scoring error. However, his playing competitor didn’t recognize the three-putt bogey on the 11th hole, and marked it down for a par, and then the scorer walking with the group missed the bogey as well.

Everything went wrong, but hopefully, it will motivate Michelson to work that much harder on his game so he can qualify for the U.S. Open next year.

Facts of the Landon Michelson DQ found in, “Player’s U.S. Open dream ends in self-DQ,” by Will Gray of GolfChannel.com.

–Bernie D’Amato (@bdamato711)