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September 12, 2013

Sean O'Hair


SEAN O'HAIR:  On the fairway, No. 3, and it looked like it was going to be a pretty long delay.  So I actually left, went back to the hotel.  And when I got back to the hotel, I came back.  And then after that I just started playing pretty good, eagled my fourth hole.  And then birdied the next par‑5 and kind of just got into a nice little rhythm out there and did everything pretty good.  I hit the ball fairly well, I chipped it fairly well and putted really good.  So just good solid round.

Q.  Why did you go back to the hotel?
SEAN O'HAIR:  You know, I didn't want to sit around and be bored all day.  It looked like it was going to be a four or five hour ‑‑ I looked at the radar and it looked like it was pretty nasty.  So my caddy stayed here, and I just told him to keep me up to date, and right when I pulled in, he told me to get back.  So it worked out.

Q.  How far was the hotel?
SEAN O'HAIR:  It wasn't very far.  It's right down the street.

Q.  Tell us a little bit about what does the Web.com Tour mean to some of these guys trying to get their card, and for someone like you is it an opportunity in these finals to get back on the TOUR?
SEAN O'HAIR:  Sure.  You know, obviously, you know, I don't want to be here, but I'd rather be in the PGA TOUR PLAYOFFS, but it is what it is and you just kind of gotta take it for what it is and want to be here, because there's a lot of guys that, you know, feel good about this position and feel they have a good chance of being on the PGA TOUR.  And you know, coming into this I really wanted to get my mindset right on I need to be ready to play and I need to want to be out here, even though it's disappointing, I need to want to be out here to get my card back and want to play in these four events.
Once I got past that, as far as the Web.com Tour is concerned, I think it's a great tour, period.  It's very competitive.  You know, I think there's a lot of guys out here that are good enough to play on the PGA TOUR, and especially these last four events.  You know, it just feels like anybody's ready to win, and you gotta bring your game every day.
And it's just like out on the PGA TOUR, I mean you can't really ‑‑ it's not a situation where you can play two solid rounds and then kind of get away with two okay rounds anymore.  It's so competitive that you really have to play well for four events to be competitive come Sunday.
So I think it's a good stage for these guys, especially some of the younger guys coming out of college and whatnot and for a guy like me that's been on TOUR for nine years, you know, I lost my rights and it's just a good way for me to earn it back.

Q.  What are you doing differently?  You're playing well.  What are you doing differently now?
SEAN O'HAIR:  You know, I think just trying to get back to basics.  You know, trying to get my mind right, I think.  I think this year, you know, I tried a lot of different things, I was kind of tinkering around with my golf swing.  I wasn't happy with how I was hitting the ball.  So I think I just kind of looked at some of the wrong stuff.  I think mentally I just wasn't where I needed to be, and you know, I think I wasn't quite practicing the way I should be practicing.
And you know, just trying to simplify the game again really.  You know, I got to the point where it was so complicated and I was trying so many different things that I really didn't know how to walk up to the ball and hit a golf shot.  I had so many thoughts in my mind I didn't really know which one to pick.  So it's just taken some time to kind of clear out my head and play golf again.
And you know, I feel like for a while now I've gotten a little bit better as each week's gone on.  You know, and I think if I can just build on that each week and feel a little bit more comfortable out there and get a little bit more confidence back, you know, I think I'll be happy with the result.

Q.  You said earlier you had to get your mind right to be here.

Q.  What do you have to overcome?  Is it ego?
SEAN O'HAIR:  I don't know if it's ego.  I mean you play on the PGA TOUR for nine years and then all of a sudden you're playing trim A.  How would you feel.  I mean I think it's a little bit of human nature to be a little bit disappointed, especially with my expectation coming into this year.  I was expecting to play pretty well.  So you know, I just kind of ‑‑ you've gotta get over that disappointment of having a bad year and be ready to play because these guys are really, really good.  And if you're not here mentally, you know, you're just going to be stomped on.

Q.  You always hear about guys who are playing really well on the tour, but you always want to get better.  Do you think maybe you ‑‑
SEAN O'HAIR:  Yeah, I think I'm kind of guilty of that a little bit.  I think it's a very fine line of you're playing good golf, but yet you want to get better and try and get to another level.  I think it's not so much doing anything different.  I think it's just doing what you do well more often.
I think that's what the guys, you know, the greats, Phil, Tiger, Vijay back in his time, week in week out, they know what worked for them and they were just good at doing it more often than say the average Joe on the PGA TOUR.

Q.  Right now are you trying to get back to where you were ‑‑
SEAN O'HAIR:  Yeah.  I think I've had ‑‑ I've had to almost kind of build from scratch again and just try and get rid of all the trash in my mind and stop playing golf swing out there and play golf, hit golf shots and keeping it simple.  I think a big part of it, too, is just that mentality of, you know, when I was playing my best golf, I was hitting 10, 11 fairways and 14, 16 greens every round, and I think I just got kind of used to that, and I think the last couple of years I've been chasing that.
I think, you know, that's kind of a dangerous thing to do, you look at guys like Tiger and Phil and they do it every week where they can win a golf tournament, where they're hitting it all over the place, but they're missing the proper spot; they get up‑and‑down when they need to, they make the crucial shots when they need to.
And that's golf.  That's how it's played.  Very rarely are you going to go out and play perfect golf where you're hitting every green or every fairway.  I think it's more a matter of it's really the kind of stuff that got me out here and when I was on the main TOUR that I focused on.  So just more getting back to the hold stuff and getting that confidence back again.

Q.  So long answer short, how is Sean owe hair different now than Sean O'Hair who was at Memorial a few years ago?  How are you a different player?
SEAN O'HAIR:  I think I'm a little bit more aware of certain things.  I don't take things for granted as much as I did.  I think the success ‑‑ the success I had early in my career I just kind of assume that that is always going to be that way.  And you know, I think times like these kind of help you, you know, I guess appreciate the success on TOUR and kind of appreciate what you're doing because you know, I think it's ‑‑ for me I kind of took for granted how hard this game is and how hard it is to be out here.  And I think, you know, just keeping it simple.  You know, I think listening to less people and doing things that I know are right and listening to my own intuition.  You know, I think that's a big thing, too.

Q.  So are you working with anybody?
SEAN O'HAIR:  You know, I've got a friend back home that I've been working with the last couple of weeks.  And just keeping it simple.  Some of the things that we worked on.  Practice habits and stuff like that.  It's just kind of nice picking his brain a little bit.

Q.  Who was that?
SEAN O'HAIR:  John Dunigan.

Q.  (Inaudible)?
SEAN O'HAIR:  No.  He actually taught my wife when she was little, because she was a golfer.  You know, he's just very simple and keeps it very basic and something I can relate to.  And you know, I got a lesson from Foley right before D.C.  I went down to Orlando, and he kind of pointed me in a good direction, and he's been helpful.  I haven't talked to him in a couple months.  But he helped me out there just to kind of at least clear some things out and some questions that I had.

Q.  How do you spell Dunigan?
SEAN O'HAIR:  I guess how it's pronounced, D‑U‑N‑I‑G‑A‑N.

Q.  And did he play any college golf or is he a pro?
SEAN O'HAIR:  You know, I think he played some mini tour golf and not much success.  And he's been teaching for a while.  He teaches over at a club that I'm a member of, so we were just kind of chitchatting, and I liked what he had to say, so I had him take a look.

Q.  So Foley helped your head more than he did any technique?
SEAN O'HAIR:  Yeah, I think at the time I saw Foley I was really lost.  I really didn't know what to do and he kind of gave me some things that I worked on, and I worked on them for the last couple months.  Dunigan's just kind of trying to simplify some things for me as far as playing is concerned.  You know, I think that's kind of the missing link for me is going out there and playing and the process of playing and seeing shots.
So yeah, I'm just, you know, like I said, I'm just trying to simplify.

Q.  If things work out the way you want them to in this series are you just going to go right back out there and try?
SEAN O'HAIR:  Yeah.  One thing I don't think I did very well this year was I didn't manage my schedule very well.  I think I panicked early and started playing way too many events in a row.  My recipe is three events max and only spend two weeks away from my family.  And I had a couple of times where I was spending six, seven weeks away from my kids.  And I think mentally that was a big grind for me.
I think that's why I kind of got off track mentally.

Q.  In the quest to keep getting better was there something specifically you were chasing?
SEAN O'HAIR:  You know, I just think you try and get it to be a little bit better ball striker or a little bit better putter and try and shoot some lower scores.  And then all of a sudden things are kind of complicated, you know.
And you know, I think this game is hard enough as it is, and for me I'm a pretty simple‑minded guy.  So simplicity is good for me.

Q.  That old saying that Tom Watson about he was always chasing perfection.
SEAN O'HAIR:  Yeah.  Yeah.  I mean I think any guy who ‑‑ any guy who's got the drive to want to be great is doing that.  There's a certain way of doing it, though, and I think it's really an art, learning how to do that.  You know, you see some of these guys, how they can peak at the right times.  And I really think it takes a lot of know how to do that.  You really have to know yourself as a person.  You really have to know yourself as a player.  And that's kind of an art that a lot of guys don't really know how to do.

Q.  How long would you say you were caught up in this quest for ‑‑ how long have you been screwed up because of it?
SEAN O'HAIR:  You know, I'd say probably the last year and a half, two years, just trying a bunch of stuff, and each week it's a different thing and trying to find like the Holy Grail of the golf swing and there's just no such thing.
And you know, I think it really just comes down to you gotta have a couple of things that work well for you and that you feel you can do day in, day out and then just grind it out.  I mean really it's kind of just go out there and just know it's going to be a fight and you're going to have your good holes, you're going to have your bad holes and just keep trucking.  That's really all you can do.

Q.  Hit it, hit it, hit it?
SEAN O'HAIR:  Exactly and do it again.

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