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September 13, 2013
LAKE FOREST, ILLINOIS
DOUG MILNE: We'd like to welcome Jim Furyk after quite the successful 59, sixth player to achieve the feat in round 2 here of the BMW Championship. Congratulations on a fantastic round. With that I'll turn it over to you for some opening comments and then we'll open it up and take some questions.
JIM FURYK: Actually a very cool card. It's too bad it goes with a 72.
Pretty exciting day. I think obviously to jump out of the gates this morning, birdieing the first three, then made a birdie at 14, hole it on 15, probably the key putt of the day was I made‑‑ the longest‑‑ well, I wouldn't say the longest, but the key putt of the day was probably making about a 15‑footer to save par at 16 and then birdied 17 and 18.
Getting off, I've never shot 28 before to start with, so it was an exciting day, and it kind of dawned on me at the turn that it would only‑‑ only is a tough way to say it, but it only takes 4‑under on the front, which doesn't seem too far out of reach to kind of break the barrier of 60.
So I tried to basically‑‑ the way I played it out in my head was that the back nine was over. I wasn't going to kind of count that I had to get to 12‑under, where I was at. I was just going to go try to play the front nine and shoot as low as I could. I figured let's see if we can get it to 4‑under. I was trying to take the nerves out of it, and heck, I've shot 4‑under par on nine holes probably 100 times in my career. Probably even more.
You know, the birdies at‑‑ having the putt go in at 2, 3 and 4, a long one at 3, it just kind of made the day pretty exciting, and obviously 5 was a little bit of a blip. I hit a great first putt, it was just a touch hard, and that pin was tough and icy, and it got by and I hit a pretty good second putt, it probably lacked a little speed and lipped out on the low side.
It was a little bit of a bummer, but I was able to hit a great shot into 6, and I think that's when the nerves kicked in a little bit, and I left it probably a little short after running one by on 5.
But seeing the putt go in at 7 was a big help mentally, knowing that I figured 8 was going to be reachable and I figured 9 was going it be a short iron, I knew the pin was in a pretty benign spot on No.9, so making the putt at 7 gave me what I thought was two good opportunities to shoot 59 and was bummed that I didn't do it on No.8 but was excited about the opportunity on 9 after I drove it down the middle.
Q. You mentioned the nerves. Could you talk about what you felt and how they were different from nerves you've felt in other situations?
JIM FURYK: Not too much different. I mean, it was‑‑ you know, the one thing was it was so tough to get aggressive with the putter because the greens are so dried out in spots and so fast, and some of those pin placements, like the one at 5 is sitting on the side of a ledge. 8 is a little bit like that.
So the tough part was I wanted to be aggressive and I wanted to give it a good run and try to knock the putt in like I did at 8, but then I knock it five feet by. So there was a lot of putts out there that felt kind of defensive if you didn't get the ball on the right side of the hole, and that's kind of it‑‑ for me a nervous feeling.
I want to be aggressive, but I know I really can't in spots because of where the pin placements are. It wasn't that much different than trying to win a golf tournament. It was just different. And I guess the moment kind of struck me the most at No.9 when I hit it‑‑ when I hit the iron shot, when I hit the wedge shot in there close, and the crowd erupted and I started looking around and it just hit me how many people had come over to that side to see the finish and how excited the crowd was. It was kind of like winning a golf tournament to be honest with you, is the reaction I got. It made it that much more fun.
Q. I know Olympia Fields has a special place in your heart, so now will you think of Conway in the same way?
JIM FURYK: It'll definitely always have a special place in my heart, there's no doubt there. You know, I don't know. I think time will‑‑ I need this to kind of sit in. It just happened. I've been doing interviews and signing autographs. It'll take a while.
Tonight a lot of it'll set in, exactly what happened and what I accomplished. But I think it'll probably take weeks and even months for me to kind of figure it out, maybe see where everything falls and how‑‑ someone has already asked me where I felt it rated in my career for accomplishments. I always thought of big moments like winning my first event out here, winning the major at Olympia. I always felt being part of the Brookline team was really cool when we came back. But this definitely falls right in the mix with those. I wouldn't want to try to order them to be honest with you, but it'll take me a while to actually be able to figure out where this all falls.
Q. When you're talking about the nerves on the final holes, how much did it help being able to talk football with Gary?
JIM FURYK: Did the TV pick that up?
Q. Gary told us.
JIM FURYK: I thanked him after nine. I said, I kind of needed that because I found myself pacing back and forth, and I went and asked him a question, I noticed one of the wedges in his bag and we were just talking about wedges in general, because we both play Callaway equipment, and we started into the football. I kind of was smiling when I was over my‑‑ getting ready to hit my drive. I actually quit thinking about trying to shoot 59 there for a few minutes, which was a good thing, really.
Q. Talking to Fluff, he said that he was thinking about it, too, until you said, using his terms, you three‑wiggled that five. Can you talk about what you thought about after that and did you think that you might have given something up there?
JIM FURYK: Yeah, I definitely thought that I might have given up an opportunity. I knew that standing on the 4th tee I felt like I really had to get through 4, 5 and 6. I knew that 7, 8, 9, just by where the wind condition was, I knew I was going to play those mostly downwind. 7 was short; I was going to have a wedge in my hand. 8 might be reachable. And 9 was short; I might have a wedge in my hand. I felt like the opportunities were there, but I had to get through 4, 5, 6, and I made the birdie at 4, hit it in there about five feet, and that gave me a big lift.
I actually almost made that putt on 5, the first one. If I hit it just a touch easier I might have knocked it in. But regrouping and hitting such a good iron shot at 6 and making par, kind of the way I played it in my head was, okay, you got through those three even par, they're tough holes, 4, 5 and 6.
Now you've got three holes on the way in where I'm going to have wedges or a reachable par‑5. I felt like I had three good opportunities to make birdie, and I had to make two, and knocking in that birdie putt at 7 really gave me a lot of confidence. Now it's down to make one birdie in the last two holes on‑‑ the pin, I was very happy that pin on 9 wasn't back right in the corner. It's sitting there front left with a right‑to‑left wind just begging you to hit it close, really. It was a good finish.
8 was a very difficult pin, I thought, and I got kind of caught in between clubs, between my hybrid and my 3‑wood. I felt like if I hit the 3‑wood I might run it through up into the rough behind the green. That was probably the only swing on the way in that I didn't really feel like I made really good contact. I hit that ball just a touch thin with the hybrid and I had to catch it. I had to hit it really good to get it up in the air to carry, and I hit it just a touch thin. It was too low. It didn't really get the benefit of the wind and came up a touch short.
Q. Can you just talk about the lie at 8, too?
JIM FURYK: It actually was probably looked a lot worse than it was. The only difficult thing about that lie was the ball was so far above my feet, so I had to aim pretty far right of the pin. Had that been a pretty level lie, if I would have been standing even with the ball, that would have been one that I really felt like I should have got up‑and‑down more often than not. I wanted to get a little aggressive with it, I wanted to really make sure that I didn't get cute and decel or try to get too cute with the shot, and I thought it was going to come out a lot more‑‑ I was going to catch a lot more grass in between the blade. I thought it was going to come out a lot softer, so I made a pretty good play, but it came out a little quicker than I expected.
Q. With all the advances in technology and how much better players are today over the years, are you surprised there haven't been more 59s or‑‑
JIM FURYK: It's so easy, yeah.
Q. I didn't mean it like that, obviously. It just seems that it's a hard number to get to, even though equipment is better, players are better, and we see a lot of good scoring out here.
JIM FURYK: I think a lot of it really was‑‑ it really was a mental battle and a mental grind, trying to‑‑ I'm still scratching my head a little bit. 12‑under for a round of golf. If you sat me down 10 feet from the hole 18 times today, I wasn't going to make 12 out of the 18 more than likely. So I always scratch my head and try to figure out how you get to 59.
We get on a roll once in a while, and every shot I hit today seemed to turn out pretty good for the most part. The one at 8 could have buried it right underneath that wall and I would have been in trouble, but I actually was in a pretty good lie uphill. I actually had a good chance to get it up‑and‑down. I had some shots today that‑‑ 4, I hit a little low draw in there with a 4‑iron and it bounces up and ends up four feet. I mean, that could take a bounce one way or the other and I could have had a 20‑footer.
So I think things kind of went my way and I hit a lot of good shots and a lot of good putts and today they all kind of went in. Yesterday I struggled a little bit and after a good start wasn't able to kind of see those positive things.
Am I surprised it hasn't happened more often? Now it's cool. I like being one of the six. I don't need seven. Six is fine with me. It'll keep happening. It'll keep happening. There's too many talented players out here. You get on a roll on some good greens, you never know what'll happen.
Q. You talked a little bit about this last week, but there's a lot of people who either watched today or are going to see this and probably make some correlation to the week after being left off the Presidents Cup team. Any thoughts on that?
JIM FURYK: No, I think I was prepared for someone to ask about it. You know, I've done‑‑ actually probably only a handful of interviews since Fred made his selections. I think what I've told everyone is I talked to you about it is I was disappointed. I was bummed about it, but I'm not really like a spiteful person. I didn't go out there with a chip on my shoulder to prove anything to anyone this week. I feel like my career has spoken for itself, and I really don't have anything to prove to anyone.
I just want to play well. I want to go out there and try to contend and play well in a golf tournament and get myself in position for the FedExCup.
I felt like I moved on pretty well. It took me two or three days to kind of put it behind me, and I think it was a couple days before I talked to Fred, but once we kind of got all that taken care of, I kind of put it behind me and kind of made my mind up that I was just going to come here and to Atlanta and kind of feel like I've got an opportunity to really finish off and make it a good year, so let's do the best we can.
The last couple of days have been a little awkward for me because I have had to talk a little bit to the media about it, and that I expected, but I also spoke to some of my friends about it. I had breakfast with Strick yesterday and sat down with him and Zach Johnson, we were talking about the teams. It was a bummer. I'm happy for them because they're really good friends of mine, and I respect their game and I wish them well. I hope they continue to play well for the U.S. side. But it was definitely a bummer, and I kind of had to go through those emotions again a little bit. So yesterday I was a little grouchy to be honest with you.
But I felt like last night I kind of kicked myself in the rear end and said, you know, it's done with. It's over with. I know the emotions came back up, but there's nothing I can do to change it now. It's over, and let's just focus on this week.
I talked to my dad a little bit about my round and told him I felt like I played a lot better than 1‑over. He kind of gave me advice that it's a long week, it's four rounds. You told me you're hitting the ball well, you told me you're putting the ball well. Just be patient. Just go out there and play golf, and you've got three days to get it back.
I did it all in one day, but...
I think what's going to be now the mental battle now isn't going to be‑‑ I shot the good round, it's fun to get the attention, it's fun to be here, and I think I'm tied for the lead. I did ask that in the scoring trailer. But now I think it's going to be to kind of forget all that that's happened today. Tomorrow is a new day for better or for worse, and really focus on trying to play a solid round on Saturday to get myself in contention for Saturday.
Q. What did you do with the glove?
JIM FURYK: They said that the Hall of Fame had always asked for stuff that was signed, so I gave it to one of our media officials from the TOUR who was going to turn it over to the Hall of Fame.
JIM FURYK: I think I did, yeah. There's a bunch of them out there, trust me. Fluff needs one. That's the one that went in on 9, and it's staying with me. If anyone has got a doubt, I've got a place for those at home.
Q. You're right, obviously you're tied for the lead now. Can you talk about the next two days, and then also, right now you're in the top‑‑ if you finish the way you are or even finish second, you're in the top 5 going into Atlanta. Can you talk about that, because you've been in that situation before where you've won the FedExCup. There's only a couple of guys that can talk about that.
JIM FURYK: Yeah, I think right now if I looked at the FedExCup, the goal would be to just keep moving up. When I won it, I came from 11th. Obviously you want to control your own destiny and be in the top 5 or six or whatever it may be. But right now looking at the big picture, the FedExCup, I'm at 15, the idea is to keep moving forward, to get better every week and then give myself a chance so that if I win the TOUR Championship I could win the FedExCup.
As far as this tournament, now, I kind of would like to throw that out the window, and the only way to move up is to really focus on this event. It's difficult sometimes to come back from a really low round. A guy shoots 62, 63 and turn it around and shoot a real‑‑ shoot a low number the next day. But I'm going to try to enjoy this. I'm not like a smell‑the‑roses type of guy, but I mean, how many times am I going to shoot 59 in my life? I'm going to enjoy this one a little bit tonight, and I'll have a big fat smile on my face when I go to bed.
When tomorrow comes around, I've got a golf tournament to try to go win. Want to play a good, solid round tomorrow and get myself in contention for Sunday.
Q. You've faced a lot of putts that have meant a lot. How did you feel on that one? Was it any different?
JIM FURYK: It reminded me of the putt to win the FedExCup, exactly. It was probably just a touch longer and it was almost the same putt, a little downhill slider left to right. I always try to draw back to times when I've done something well, and it was like, hell, I knocked that one in. It's the same putt, it's left center, just hit it solid and see what happens. I don't remember really even striking the putt or what it felt like when it left the putter or anything. It went in the middle, I believe, so it was all good.
Q. Was there anything that Fluff said to you late in the day before you chose the club on the final hole? Anything stick out?
JIM FURYK: No, and I think his style is a little bit more‑‑ you know, you've got to picture throwing a no‑no; no one walks over there and tells him good luck or whatever, just kind of leave him alone, and I think Fluff's style is more when things are going good, just being himself, doing the same thing we always do, going through the same routine, and that's kind of what I try to think of when I'm playing. You just‑‑ sometimes we can get quick, sometimes we can start making decisions fast. I found myself doing that on the 7th hole before I hit that wedge, and had to kind of slow down a little bit and said wait a second. I kept going over the numbers with him over and over again. We wanted to fly the ball this far, it's downwind, it's going to play shorter, in my mind so I could slow down. I think we just talked about that shot and how far we thought the wedge shot was playing, and I said, I think it's similar to the shot we hit on 7 or a similar distance, similar style, it's just kind of a smooth gap wedge. We just went through our normal procession. So he didn't like give me the oh, let's knock this one in or knock this stiff or really any pep talk. That's not really my style. I'm not a rah‑rah, cheer‑me‑up, pump‑me‑up type of person. I want him to be the same way, and that's his normal style anyway.
Q. Along the lines of the Presidents Cup, in this day and age, it's not like you guys are taking a boat over to England anymore. Do you think the timing of after Deutsche Bank‑‑ the idea is to have somebody who's hot. Do you think that the decision of the picks is too early?
JIM FURYK: Well, there's a lot of things they have to do, though, as far as clothing, as far as‑‑ there's a lot of things they have to work out, and they've got all the programs and‑‑ there's printing and probably a lot more behind the scenes that needs to be done in those last‑‑ how many weeks are there between Deutsche Bank‑‑ there's only four weeks, right? I mean, in the past the Ryder Cup used to, I think, to six. But there's a lot of things I think they have to prep.
I think the‑‑ for better or for worse, and I guess‑‑ I don't know how to say this, to make sure you take it right, the hot player, you want a guy that's playing well, but just because I shot 59 today doesn't make me the best choice. I feel like Jordan wasn't picked because he shot 62 on Sunday or Monday or whatever the heck that day is there. I think it's because he's had a good body of work throughout this year. When I think of a hot guy I don't think of a hot guy for the last week. I look at a guy that's played well for a month or two or three or four or five.
I hope to be a captain of a team one day, and I guess my selection isn't going to come down to the last day and the last shot. I'm going to look at the guys that I think are the best players and that are going to give me the best opportunity to win the event. That's what Freddie had to do, and he made his choice.
I think the timing of it, though, the four weeks I think is probably fine. It's probably needed to be honest with you.
DOUG MILNE: If we could just with 10 and run through as best you recall with some clubs and we'll cut you loose.
JIM FURYK: 10, driver, 9‑iron, I think I made about a 10‑footer. You'll have to check ShotLink because I don't remember the lengths very well.
I hit a chippy 7‑iron at 11 to about three feet.
3‑wood, wedge on 12 to about three feet.
Driver and a 3‑wood about 20 feet from the pin on 14. I had to blade a little wedge from the short cut of rough, knocked it down there about two or three feet and made that for birdie.
I holed a‑‑ I think I hit a hybrid and a chippy 9‑iron into 15 and holed that shot.
16 was the up‑and‑down, made about a good 15‑footer.
17 was a 6‑iron to about five feet.
And 18 was a driver, hybrid and a chippy 9‑iron to about‑‑ probably about 10 feet.
Birdies on the back:
No.2, I think I hit 7‑iron about 15 feet left of the pin.
3 was a 3‑wood and a 6‑iron to‑‑ well, it was probably about 30 feet behind the pin, 25, 30, made that.
And then 4 was driver, 4‑iron.
5 was the three‑putt. That was a 6‑iron in there. I hit 3‑wood, 6‑iron.
7 was 4‑iron and a gap wedge to about 10 feet.
And then 9 was a driver and a gap wedge to probably‑‑ we'll call it three feet. It was probably just a touch shorter than that.
DOUG MILNE: Jim, congratulations.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports