June 14, 1994
LES UNGER: Greetings once again. We have obviously our champion
from last year and also the winner of the last tournament, rare
as that turns out to be, Lee Janzen. Lee, a lot of nice things
happened to your game since media day here.
LEE JANZEN: Yes. For whatever reason why my game did turn around,
but eventually, I think maybe you just get fed up with what you
are doing; that you have to get to the point where something has
LES UNGER: You had your day to play the course back about a
month ago and you have had a little practice here. Some comments
about that, then we will open it up.
LEE JANZEN: The differences I see from a month ago and yesterday
were that the rough is thicker. It looks like it is full all the
way through the rough, so there's not going to be any hit or miss.
You are not going to hit in the rough in one spot and have a good
line and hit it in rough in another hole and have a terrible.
It looks like it is going to be the same everywhere. From what
I saw if you can get a short iron and hit a really good shot out
of the rough, you do have a chance of hitting the green, but I
think that is about it. The greens were absolutely phenomenal
yesterday. I thought last week's greens, I thought, were perfect.
If I would have seen these greens before last week, I wouldn't
have said that, but these are in beautiful shape. And they are
LES UNGER: Again, raise your hands please, if you'd like to
ask a question.
LEE JANZEN: When I leave here I am going to play and that is it.
Q. How much did the switch to the apex irons help you? You
talked about it at Memorial that you were going to try --
LEE JANZEN: The main difference is the weighting of the clubs.
Perimeter weighted clubs are designed so the head guides through
the path for the player and I have played a traditional blade
all my life, so the millions of balls that I have been practicing,
I have learned how to swing with a head that was designed that
way. All I did was go back to what I learned all my life. So it
is much easier to go on the course and trust a certain shot that
I want to hit or just trust my swing. That is really the main
differences, that I gained a lot of confidence in myself on the
Q. How much of an advantage was it to play last week? A lot
of guys here are spending so much time, you know, learning the
speed of the greens and are the Westchester greens a big advantage?
LEE JANZEN: I think so. The golf course is U.S. Open style course
right from the first hole. You are always conscious of trying
not to miss the pin on the short side because the rough is thick
and the greens are usually fast. Driving is also a premium at
Westchester, same as U.S. Open. Plus you get to play in tournament
competition the week before. You can come here to practice all
you want but they really don't get the course set up exactly the
way they want to until a few days before the tournament.
Q. How much has your mindset changed this week coming off the
win as opposed to say two, three weeks ago if you would have had
to come in here to play as you were at that time?
LEE JANZEN: Just three weeks ago all I was hoping for was just
a couple of tournaments. I felt like that was about the only way
I could prepare myself a little better than I already was. I knew
my game had to turn around sometime and I felt like I was doing
everything I could. But no, my scores were not that great. So
I was just hoping I could just get one tournament, one good tournament
and that would just be a tremendous boost. The Kemper, got a lot
of momentum there. Felt great going in the last week, just carried
it over. So, yeah, I would say I am probably a different person
now than I was three weeks ago.
Q. Are you superstitious? Is there a monkey on your back after
winning, coming in here; are you going to beat that because nobody
LEE JANZEN: I think somebody probably will some day. But I don't
know, winning two tournaments in a row on the Tour is tough, doesn't
matter which tournament follows the other. I don't think that
really -- I don't feel like there is a jinx as far as that goes.
Q. Lee, two questions, please. Number one, at Westchester,
was there any one single thing that pulled you through? And number
2, did you feel that coming on, and how did it feel when you realized
the game was back?
LEE JANZEN: I have been hitting the ball fairly well the whole
year and just making, you know, a couple of mistakes every round,
and the main thing was I wasn't making any birdies. I was amazed
how many rounds I'd go with one birdie and no birdies, when I
am used to going out and making 6 birdies, sometimes shooting
71. I didn't like making all those bogeys, but as it turns out,
I would have rather done it that way. Anyway, I started putting
better at the Kemper; just made adjustments Friday night and just
putted great Saturday and Sunday and putted great last week. That
was the main difference, just started rolling the ball. I felt
I had to putt the green below the hole and I have got a chance
to make it.
Q. Has it been difficult having to adjust having won the Open
last year to all the attention and all the distractions that go
along with winning it?
LEE JANZEN: It is difficult. It is not what I was used to. I think
over a year's time, I have gotten used to it much more.
LES UNGER: Ken Venturi said your putt on 16 would have gone
five, six feet passed if it didn't hit the cup; was he right.
LEE JANZEN: It went in the side of the hole and the only way it
could have done that is if it was the perfect speed. I think it
would have gone about this far back.
(INDICATING APPROXIMATELY A FOOT AND A HALF)
Q. Can you talk about the difference here at Oakmont now than
when you were here a month ago? Are you the kind of guy that when
you are on a roll like you are now, how long does that usually
LEE JANZEN: Who knows? What we try and do once we get to that
point where we are playing very well, find out how we can maintain
that focus and whatever it is we are doing in our swing, our swing
thoughts, chipping or putting; just trying to figure out what
the key is and engrain that in our mind to keep it going as long
as possible. The course, the main difference I see is it is in
tremendous shape. I know it was in good shape before but it is
absolutely perfect now.
Q. The forecast is hot and humid. What does that do to you
personally? What do you think that will do to the tournament as
far as scores and playing condition?
LEE JANZEN: I guess it will make it dry out and play fast, right?
I mean most likely. I am not an expert on that. But I think that
would be ideal for the tournament, as long as the ball bounces
and doesn't roll in the fairway and as far as the heat goes, when
I am home in Florida, it is much hotter than this. It is usually
95 with more humidity. Last year, Baltusrol was 102 degrees on
Saturday, so --
Q. If you can just talk about the pressures that come with
being a U.S. Open champion that aren't associated with normal
victories on the Tour, just something, expectations, you think
that comes with your appearances and your playing, whatever it
LEE JANZEN: I guess the expectations of other people of what they
might -- what they think you are going to do now because you win
the U.S. Open now. They expect you maybe to win more tournaments
or win more majors, or whatever. That is probably the toughest.
You don't play well, you hear people asking what is wrong with
you if you don't play well. I think it bothers my friends more
than it bothered me. They are trying to help me out, give me advice,
but I knew eventually it would turn around. I knew it couldn't
Q. Do you feel any added pressure this week being defending
LEE JANZEN: No. Last year I was real relaxed before the week started.
I feel if I just go out and spend a little time working on my
chipping, and putting, and hits, like I would do every week, that
is all I can do as far as preparing. I am sure I might be nervous
first tee Thursday. The nerves go away usually after the first
couple of balls. My main goal is to get ready for the main tee
Thursday and be ready to play the holes as good as I can could
Q. When you were starting earlier this year, was there any
one particular low point? Can you look back on now that time when
you were really the most discouraged?
LEE JANZEN: Probably Bay Hill. I played probably about 12 good
holes both days in Bay Hill but the other six holes were so bad
that I didn't even come close to making the cut. Normally when
I miss the cut, it is only just -- you know, usually I have a
chance to make the cut with a couple of holes to play on Friday.
And didn't have a chance to make a cut with nine holes to play
which probably was the worse part. Sometimes I think you have
to hit rock bottom before you can climb back up. I always feel
that was probably the point-- you know, TBC was the following
week, I had a great opening round.
Q. Could you share some tips or things you have been doing
with us to get mentally fit when you get yourself, say, to a mental
state of Bay Hill and you come up to Westchester and win again;
it's a long way from bottom to top; what exercises do you go through
mentally? What are you doing to get your head there?
LEE JANZEN: The two main things I did was before a shot I just
made sure that I took my time lining up and lining up exactly
where I wanted to line up and committed myself and also told myself
to trust my swing and just, you know, don't hold back; go ahead
and swing and just hit it. And that was basically the two keys,
was commitment and trust that I keyed on. I do some daily exercises.
Mostly, just I am thankful; I try and take sometime and realize
how thankful I am for my family and how I have been blessed with
my physical talents and also gave me a great brain to use it and
be on the PGA Tour and doing what I am doing. Everyday I can be
thankful for that, puts me in a good frame of mind when I go out
to play and practice. I also try and reflect on some of the accomplishments
that I have had too that gives you some boost, confidence boost
knowing you start -- if you wrote down every little thing you
do that you thought was worthwhile that gives you some confidence.
Q. Is your contract with Ben Hogan unaffected even though you
are playing a different type of iron now the last two weeks?
LEE JANZEN: Well, you know, they wanted me to play the H40 and
then they suggested they would rather see me play the Apex. I
am glad with what is going on because I love that iron. It's a
tremendous iron. I think that a lot of average players would probably
be surprised if they did play it because the design of it is almost
perimeter weighting, but because it is forged, a lot of average
players think they can't play a traditional iron. I think that
is just because they have been brainwashed by the market.
LES UNGER: He is taking off to play so if you have got a question,
please ask it.
Q. What is your schedule for the next month?
LEE JANZEN: I am going to play-- what is this week? I am playing
next week in Hartford and then I am going to Vienna before the
British Open to play in a Pro Am sort of deal. I don't know what
the format is. It's a Friday, Saturday, Sunday deal and then play
the British Open so I am not playing the Western and the
Anheuser-Busch. That is about a month there. Then I am playing
Memphis after that.
LES UNGER: You are getting better at this aren't you, like
doing this now?
LEE JANZEN: Well, you get more comfortable, so it is like anything
- the more you do it, the better you get at it.
LES UNGER: It shows.
LEE JANZEN: Just like practicing.
Q. Obviously, Lee, we know you'd like to win, what-- I am going
to reach for is this: What is the rock bottom you would settle
for as your goal here?
LEE JANZEN: This week?
LEE JANZEN: I am just going to ask myself that if I can commit
myself on every single shot I will be proud of myself and I definitely
have two good references, the last couple of weeks to build on;
I probably, you know, I will expect myself to play well, but if
it comes down to trying to win the tournament on Sunday, you know,
there is a lot of emotions going on and the nerves are there and
you never know how you are going to perform under those circumstances.
Last week on the back nine I hit a lot of good shots. Sometimes
to win the U.S. Open you have got to hit them all perfect.
LES UNGER: Nick Price was asked if he would he take par and
he hedged. What would be your answer to that?
LEE JANZEN: Just don't know what is going to happen through the
week. I'd say par is going to be a great score just by judging
what I saw yesterday, but if the thunderstorms come through and
dump a lot of rain, it is going to soften up the greens like 1,
10 and 12. That will make a tremendous difference just on those
holes. Those three shots, the field will pick up right there.
I hope it stays dry. I think that is probably the way this course
was meant to be played.
Q. Southern Hills, would you talk--
LEE JANZEN: I am sorry, did you say something about the commissioner?
Q. No. Talk about Southern Hills, if you would just talk about
LEE JANZEN: The condition, I have never played Southern Hills.
All I know it is in Oklahoma; it's going to be hot. We were also
at Bellerive a couple of years ago supposed to be hot there had
a cold front go through; maybe we will hope for that again. But
I don't know anything about the course other than that it is obviously--
has to be a great course or it wouldn't be hosting the U.S. Open
or PGA Tour.
Q. How much of a factor has (Caddy) Dave Musgrove been?
LEE JANZEN: I guess we have spent a little bit of time. He is,
right from the start; even on the range, I get out there and hit--
always hit a few in a row; just start getting in the groove and
just kind of hitting them. He would slow me down, stop and he
got me to focus more on hitting shots that I need, not just on
the range, also on the course, he would almost pick out the time
that he'd see that I wasn't focused as much and he would be right
there, say, okay, let us concentrate on the target; aim for the
pin, you know, he is very good.
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