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June 28, 2018

Rocco Mediate

Colorado Springs, Colorado

Q. He was just saying you guys came out about a month ago. That was the key, right, you gotta come out --
ROCCO MEDIATE: Definitely helped. You know where you're going. Russ took us around, showed us some tricks. But, yeah, definitely helped. It's always good -- USGA courses are always different than the other ones because they're always the hardest. They're supposed to be.

So you've got to go look around, see where you can play and where you can't play. Because they'll give you plenty of places to play, but when you miss, they don't like that. That's what I love about U.S. Opens, it brings out -- it brings your best and your worst out. And if you let it get you, it will get you. There's no question about that.

Q. Setup has been a big subject.
ROCCO MEDIATE: Truthfully, it's all been a bunch of bullshit, what I've heard, complete horse shit. I'll say it again if you want me to.

Here's the deal -- here's the deal, two weeks ago: If you don't like how it was set up, A, hit better shots; B, don't come. Don't come. Someone will take your place. It's real, real simple. Now you're getting me mad.

They're talking about, well, you just shot 10 feet right of the pin, rolled into the bunker. Hit it left of the pin, then, okay? Because everybody's got to play the golf course.

Let me ask you this question, too. Remember the one about the golf course changed from the morning -- have you ever played one that didn't? Of course it's going to change. That's what it's supposed to do.

Sometimes it can get softer in the afternoon. Sometimes it gets firmer.

What I heard that week made me want to throw up, basically. Just shut up, play. Because I guarantee you that trophy, that beautiful trophy they give away, this week and two weeks ago, is way worth the crap you have to go through to win it. It is. I haven't done that yet, but it is. I had this much on it. It was worth the try.

Q. How was it playing with your teammates?
ROCCO MEDIATE: It's the best ever. We had a ball. Lee and I have become even closer friends out here because we see each other more. But we've been buddies since '82. Marco is great. Everybody played pretty good today, pretty solid golf today, a lot of fun. A lot of fun.

Q. Do you think part of that is because you're also friends?
ROCCO MEDIATE: It could be. Sometimes it's not good. But Lee and I have gotten over that. First, we played together back in the '90s, when he got out there, we played crap. Because we just were trying to beat each -- but now we're just playing. So it's better now. Sometimes it could be bad. Almost too relaxed.

Q. Obviously a lot of retrospectives about Torrey Pines this year. Did you enjoy reminiscing or do you --

Q. -- where you lived at every day your life?
ROCCO MEDIATE: It wasn't a loss. I've said a bunch of times: Those things can ruin careers. And what I mean by that is if I would have, if I would have 3-putted or double bogeyed the last hole on Sunday or triple bogeyed 18 on Monday in the playoff to lose by -- I don't know if I could recover from that.

But that's not how I lost. I lost because it was just the coolest battle of all time and I happened to be one short. I hiccupped first on the first playoff, the game's over. That's okay.

But the other ways can destroy you. If I would have got beat by 10, okay, I was supposed to. According to the world. But that -- but if you go down, you've got the tournament won, you make a 7 on the last hole or something, that's a hard one to get over. You just have to keep, you know what I mean? Every single shot. But that one -- it hurt me for a while but it helped me in the end.

Q. In the back of your mind, I don't know what your mindset is or what you were thinking, I'd love to get in the mix in a thing like this or be in the headlines now?
ROCCO MEDIATE: No, it's great to be -- I love Opens. I love our National Open. I don't care if it's the Regular National Open or a Senior National Open, it looks like a U.S. Open golf course. It is a U.S. Open golf course. It will show you quickly that it is. If you hit it in the wrong place. That's what I love most about the setup. I've always liked them. We've played many a tournament that we kept going: That was the hardest hole I've ever seen; I hit two perfect shots. Whatever. That's what happens in these.

And the guy that can survive that, the good breaks and the bad breaks, mostly the bad breaks, will do well.

Q. Looks like you had a birdie putt on 18, could have been 3-under.
ROCCO MEDIATE: Hit a good one. Hit it more right than I wanted. It was hit so good, I thought it was going to, that overspin would catch, but it just didn't. That's all right. I hit three really good shots there.

These greens, though, I'll tell you what they're tricky little devils. You've got to know -- they're not fast, fast, fast, but they're pretty fast in spots. You just have to pick because there's so much slope in them. Subtle. Subtle. It's good stuff.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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