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August 24, 2018

Sean O'Hair

Paramus, New Jersey

JOHN BUSH: We'd like to welcome Sean O'Hair into the interview room after 2-under par 69.

If we can get some comments on your round today, please.

SEAN O'HAIR: Sure. Just a pretty boring round of golf actually, which is nice. Hit a lot of fairways. Hit some greens, and had one 3-putt out there that kind of threw me off a bit, but other than that, just a good, solid round of golf.

JOHN BUSH: I know you don't want to talk about it yet, but in terms of progressing through the Playoffs, you are a member at Aronimink. So that has to be a little in your mind in terms of trying to make it to Philly. If we can get some comments on your state of mind.

SEAN O'HAIR: Yeah, obviously pretty disappointing season for me thus far and haven't really felt great about my game. Hit the ball well last week. Missed the cut. I think I had four 3-putts in two days, so I really worked hard on my putting. Got a decent feel coming into this week, and my goal going into the Playoffs was to try and make it to Aronimink, and if not, I've got a member/guest on Ryder Cup week. So I'm going to get there no matter what.

Just got to play some good golf to get to Aronimink, and I think the only way I can do that is just take one day at a time and make it count.

Q. Do you have anyone in line yet for the member/guest?
SEAN O'HAIR: I do. I'm trying to see if he's available.

Q. Well, I'll be at The Ryder Cup.
SEAN O'HAIR: Oh, for Ryder Cup -- no. But I'm looking forward to the member/guest.

Q. Given your start and what it requires, all the way through, are you looking at this as the end of the season, or kind of the start of a new one?
SEAN O'HAIR: Kind of the start of a new one. You know, after last week, I kind of felt like my season was pretty much done. I've just been focused on some of the things that I need to do for this fall, and for the beginning of next year.

So I don't know if that just took pressure off me or what, but that's kind of where my mind has been is not so much the Playoffs but just more so getting ready for next year.

Q. Your points are pretty safe but any time over last weekend, were you looking at the projections and wondering if you were even going to make it?
SEAN O'HAIR: Yeah, how they were going to project it on the website, if there's a couple guys tied at a certain spot, they give them all the points to the end. It's kind of worrisome when you're looking at: All right, I'm 416 or whatever I was, and the projected 125 was like I think 406 was the closest it got for 407. I was a little concerned.

But you know, I felt pretty safe all in all. But you know, obviously I wanted to improve my position as best as possible each week, and I really struggled with that in the second half of the year.

Q. Obviously we haven't seen new contention a lot in recent time. I just wonder what's been missing, and because of the fact that you have had a taste of success, how difficult is it when you're kind of hovering around the area?
SEAN O'HAIR: Well, the last four years, I've had second-places every year. So I wouldn't say I haven't been in contention very often. I mean, one-shot different, and I could be sitting here and have four wins in the last four years. I mean, that's just golf. That's just how it works.

I would say I'm not as consistent as I would like to be, and I think because of that, it's more from the scoring side of things. I think ball-striking-wise, I'm not necessarily where I was maybe earlier in my career. I feel like I'm making some changes back to what I used to do when I was younger, and I'm seeing a little bit of improvement the last two weeks.

But really, just comes down to putting. You know, making the putts for par, and making those putts 15, 20, 25 feet for birdie. That's what I see the difference from, say, maybe the Top-10 guys on TOUR to guys who are losing their cards.

Q. Knowing that you want to get to Aronimink and trying to keep all the FedExCup numbers out of your head, how do you play as well as you're playing right now in the middle of the Playoffs without looking ahead? Do you have a trick that you do or do you embrace it?
SEAN O'HAIR: Honestly, I just haven't been thinking about it. Really, coming into the Playoffs and being like, I've got to make this count, I don't get a feel from guys out here that that's the feeling -- I think guys like me feel lucky to be here and not be playing in Ohio right now. I know I am.

And you know, I think the last thing for me that's going to help me is thinking about what I need to do to get to Aronimink or get to TOUR Championship. I just need to go play golf, and each day work on the things that I need to work on, and right now, I feel like it's the scoring side of the game: You know, putting, chipping.

So just like I said, all that cliché stuff: One shot at a time, one day at a time, that's really -- it works.

Q. It looks like you are grateful and thankful to the situation, having your card to play next year, but is your score from today going to change your goals?
SEAN O'HAIR: No, not today. I mean, I feel like the last two days have kind of happened because I'm working on the right things, and I'm focused more on maybe the process of the game right now than the actual score and result of it. You know, this is the end of my 14th season out here, so I've done this enough to know that if I go out there trying to get results, whether it be finishing a certain position on FedExCup or win a golf tournament or shoot a score; that just doesn't work for me. That's not how I function.

I just need to focus on certain things and just kind of let the result come to me. The last day, the last two days, it's been that way. Whether that happens this weekend, you know, I don't know. I'm not going to really worry about it to be quite honest with you.

Q. If this is the beginning, if you will, to a new season, how much pressure do you put on yourself or do you feel coming into this event if it's a new season? Can you let it fly or let it go? There's a lot on the line when you're in a FedExCup Playoffs at the same time.
SEAN O'HAIR: You know, I don't really feel like there's much pressure on me at this point. I really don't have anything to lose. If I don't play well this week, what happens? I go home and play with my kids and it's all good. I've got a job next year. I'm not worried about it.

If I do play well, great. I'll go to Boston and do the best job I can and I'll just keep having that attitude. And really, that's how I'm looking at it right now.

Q. How old do you feel? And when you go to Molly's PTA meetings, are you the youngest parents?
SEAN O'HAIR: I feel really old out here. I don't feel so old back home.

Out here, I mean, there's so many young guys that are playing great golf and I feel like I've been doing this a long time. I've been a pro since I was 17 years old; almost 20 years. It's kind of crazy to say that.

But yeah, at home, I'm probably -- my wife and I are probably some of the youngest, because most people that have kids -- my oldest is 13, and a lot of people that have 13-year-olds are well in their 40s. I feel lucky in that regard.

Q. Have you, indeed, been to a PTA meeting?
SEAN O'HAIR: What do you think?

Q. I think no.
SEAN O'HAIR: Yeah. No.

Q. If not, why not?
SEAN O'HAIR: I got better things to do I guess (laughter).

Q. Talking about your career, and the number of years, for most of it, the Playoffs have been part of the year. How has it evolved in terms of the way you've thought about it and the way players talk about it?
SEAN O'HAIR: Yeah, you know, I've really only had one year which was maybe 2009 where I finished high up on the FedExCup. I finished I think fifth.

You know, that TOUR Championship was fun because there was a lot on the line. I think that's stayed the same. I mean, you know, obviously the points system has changed a little bit here and there, but I think ever since the start of the FedExCup, I mean, guys really look at it as a great opportunity, and I think as time's gone on, maybe guys put that in their goals, some of the top guys out here maybe put that in their goals at the beginning of the year.

For me, I'm not really much of a goal setter. It's always a bonus to get in THE TOUR Championship and it's always a nice way to end the year. That's kind of how I've looked at it. But the feel for guys at the beginning of the year, maybe that's something they focus on.

Like I said, this week, I don't feel like player-wise a lot of guys are stressing out about it. It's the first week of the Playoffs, and I think the top guys know they have four weeks, four opportunities, to where they know, and I'm sure I'd feel that way; that I'm going to have at least one or two good weeks, and that's all you need. You win one of these events, and all of a sudden, thing change, and if you get in THE TOUR Championship and win THE TOUR Championship, you have a good chance of winning the FedExCup.

I think every week is just an opportunity. Every day is an opportunity. And for guys like me, every day is, you know, kind of a do-or-die situation. I actually think that just takes the pressure off.

Q. So we all know, golf is one of those sports, it ebbs and flows, there's no such thing -- other than what Tiger did years ago -- being flat-out great every single week. For you, now being back at the top of the leaderboard, it's one of those where it seems like the wave it trending in the right way. Do you ever look at your game or where you are mentally and go, oh, that's what I wasn't doing; now I know why I'm back up here. Or do you just kind of go, oh, it's happening again and I'm just going to ride with it. Do you know inside what it is that might be a little different that's making you trend and play so -- this well and being at the top of the leaderboard now?
SEAN O'HAIR: Honestly, I think if I knew what created certain things like this, I would be a lot more consistent player. You know, I think if I knew why I play good when I play good and when I don't, you know, what I don't do or what I do when I don't play well, I'd be able to control it a little bit better.

I've made 11 cuts this year. I think this is my 12th, and I made just over a million dollars and I've had two good weeks and I've missed a lot of cuts before this week. I'm not getting too excited to be quite honest with you.

I feel good with the golf course. Right now I feel good with my game and I'm just going to see what happens.

Q. Does anything feel different compared to when you were missing cuts?
SEAN O'HAIR: Yeah, it feels different when those putts go in, as opposed to missing. Yeah, that's about it. I mean, like I said, the difference from last week to this week, is just putts going in, and a couple putts go in, you start getting a little bit more confident. Instead of sitting there saying, you know, the hole looks like that (indicating super tiny), it kind of looks like that (indicating bigger).

It's more of a flow and you're not necessarily so stressed out about it much.

Q. You mentioned the 3-putt throwing you off a little bit, which comes early in the round. In what way did it throw you off? And more importantly, the next shot on 12, the importance of that, and how you hit it and what you did with it.
SEAN O'HAIR: What did I do on 12? Oh, yeah, that's right. The 3-putt, yeah, the 3-putt, that's my pet peeve in golf. I just hate 3-putts, and I'm really good at it and it just pisses me off. That's about it.

And then as far as hitting it on the green, yeah, that was -- that made me feel better.

JOHN BUSH: Thank you, sir. Appreciate your time.

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