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November 6, 2010

John Cook


PHIL STAMBAUGH: Okay, John Cook. 67 today and you find yourself one stroke behind Michael Allen, who -- I don't know what was going on with him.
JOHN COOK: Where was he? Where did he play?
PHIL STAMBAUGH: I don't know.
JOHN COOK: 61 is pretty darn good.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: I guess, first of all, did you notice him on the board? And just talk about your round today.
JOHN COOK: I didn't really notice him -- I mean I didn't really see many boards, and when I did see a board, I mean you could see the name, but I didn't really correlate it with going well into double figures.
And then I'd just finished 14. I was trying to calculate. I didn't know where he started, so I had no idea. Then walking up 18 it said that he shot 10-under. I didn't beat 10-under out there today, I can promise you that.
I thought I did pretty good. Got clipped by 6. It's a great round, obviously. I know he's got the Giants and the San Francisco Bay karma going, so do something about that tomorrow.
But I was pretty pleased with my round. I left some out there, obviously. I don't know if you saw it, but I had some opportunities coming in that I didn't cash in. But overall, you know, I went out and played a pretty decent round of golf.
67 around here, I'm not displeased at all. I'd like to have made that putt at 18 because I could have at least gone in at a tie tomorrow, depending on what happens. To no avail, but we'll just try to make it up tomorrow.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Take us through your birdies and any good saves.
JOHN COOK: Two-putt at 1. I hit a nice drive and a 9-iron to about 10 feet, right up the gut. Good way to start the day.
And had a good opportunity at No. 5 that just lipped out from about 15 feet. 6; 7, made a birdie at 7. Hit a nice gap wedge in there, hit 3-wood and a gap wedge about 12 feet short of the hole, made a nice putt.
And 8, I made a nice up-and-down, not too terribly difficult, but made about a 3-footer for par. And then 9, hit a drive and a 3-wood just to the right of the green and made a real nice pitch up there about four feet and made that.
And 10, hit my only bad drive of the day, but hit it in the right rough, but squibbed a hybrid down there and hit a nice little gap wedge in there about three feet behind the hole and made that.
Then made one nice par at 12, actually. Hit a real good drive and a pretty good 4-iron just to the right of the green. Hit a little goofy-looking lie, a little cabbage-like lie and didn't hit a very good pitch and made about a 10-footer for par, which was nice.
And from then on in I had chances, from 13 on in and didn't capitalize. I think the putt at 15, I had about an 8-footer, missed it. And then 18, had about a 10-footer just down the hill and misread it actually. I didn't think it was going to go to the left.
But like I said, gave myself chances, hit a lot of greens. Looks like I hit a lot of fairways. That's a good sign. Playing lift, clean and place, it's always good to give yourself a chance anyway.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Okay. We'll go to questions.

Q. How much of an advantage, if at all, can it be for Michael tomorrow that he actually has fans and friends around here and how much of an advantage for you is the fact that you've won 11 times on the TOUR. Michael obviously has had a good career, but didn't win at all.
JOHN COOK: I think that's the tradeoff. I've got my family and some friends up here, but I don't think it's going to rival the Bay Area crowd anyway. Michael's a great guy. He's really -- from age 40 something on, he's really played well.
He's won, so I'm sure that he knows what to do, but you know, I as well, I'll have to rely on my experience because we'll be playing a different game. He's really long. And he's an accomplished player.
Biding time between two tours is not easy. He's played a lot of golf this year, so he knows his game very well. But you know, that's -- visitors can win, too. (Laughs).

Q. John, you've obviously seen almost everything in this game, been around a long time. You shot 61 yourself to win one time. Just kind of -- like you say, you got clipped by 6 even though you played a nice round. Just kind of gotta say forget it?
JOHN COOK: Yeah. 10-under par is really good. This golf course is not that easy, and it's not -- obviously it's not playing as difficult as it can because it's soft conditions, and the greens are just absolutely perfect and at a speed where you can be fairly aggressive.
But you just know that there's some pins out there they haven't used, and they'll be pretty interesting tomorrow, I'm sure. There's definitely some tuckage going to go on tomorrow, I would think.
They've hit some of those spots, but not all of them. So I imagine that tomorrow we're going to see a pretty good golf course.
So yeah, you just shrug it off and stick to what I can do, you know, keep hitting solid quality shots and making good decisions. That's what I did today.

Q. How might the weather affect? The forecast obviously isn't good tomorrow. How does that affect the way they set up the course, the way you approach a round like that?
JOHN COOK: Yeah. It's supposed to dump a lot of rain, accumulation of quite a bit, and that doesn't bode well for the conditions, but they'll hit the high spots. And you know, in the afternoon if it clears and we get out there to play, you know, we are playing the ball up. So hopefully the golf course will drain enough that you can find some spots to put the ball.
But the greens will be fine. I don't anticipate the greens having any problem at all, unless it just hammers down rain.

Q. (Indiscernible).
JOHN COOK: Yeah. That's it. I don't think very much. They're still very wet, very soft. There's not a lot of -- not much underneath, and it'll hold some water, and that's going to be difficult. I know that, you know, sometimes we call play because of the greens, but these greens will be fine, but the fairways will be very difficult.

Q. John, there was one shot I saw on TV. It was 15, I believe, a little 7-iron from like 151, I believe they said. You're obviously a good shot maker, and you see a lot of that here. Can you talk a little bit about how the air here even makes that more of a factor?
JOHN COOK: You know, I grew up in Southern California where the air is similar. It's just heavy, and it's moist and it's kind of just damp; and you kind of have to check your ego and know that 150 sometimes is going to be a nice 7-iron.
It wasn't a lot of wind blowing, but I just knew that 8-iron wasn't going to be enough. And that's just knowing Southern California and Northern California and the Bay area. We know that.
I don't -- especially into the wind, I don't try to over-swing things. I really don't. And you know, so that's a lesson learned from many, many years ago by a man named Venturi. He's pretty much engrained in me into the wind how to play different shots. So that one and a couple other shots I hit today were nice and into-the-wind type shots.
So I can draw on that. Sometimes when the ball is traveling, you can go ahead and smash something, but the ball doesn't really travel into the wind here. So again, you gotta suck your ego up and take the right club, not the popular club.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Anything else for John? John, good luck tomorrow.
JOHN COOK: Thank you.

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