‘The world’s hardest patience test’ | Seen and Heard at Pinehurst

Welcome to GOLF.com’s “Seen & Heard” video series, in which we give you an inside look at golf’s biggest events through the eyes and ears of our onsite crew. On deck this week: the 2024 U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2 in Pinehurst, North Carolina. Let’s go!

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On Wednesday, U.S. Open competitors were dialing their games in for Thursday’s opening round, and the GOLF.com crew was eager to get some player perspective on just how hard No. 2 is going to play.

Sean Zak wanted to check out just how penal the tufty wiregrass that lines the fairways might be for errant shots. After rolling three balls in and assessing the lies, it was clear that missing the fairway could indeed be very costly this week.

Zak also caught up with fan-favorite Harry Higgs, who is fresh off back-to-back Korn Ferry Tour victories in May. Higgs delivered what may be the line of the tournament, which he said came from his caddie: “This isn’t going to be golf,” Higgs said of this week’s U.S. Open. “This is going to be the world’s hardest patience test.”

The 18th green at Pinehurst No. 2.
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Well said indeed!

One of the coolest parts of every U.S. Open is the fact that anyone can get a spot in the field by qualifying. GOLF executive editor Alan Bastable caught up with one such qualifier. Colin Prater is a 29-year-old high-school biology teacher from Colorado, and this year, he’s playing in his first U.S. Open.

“Do you bring golf into the classroom at all?” Bastable asked.

“Yeah, I think my kids probably get sick and tired of hearing about it,” Prater replied.

As the day became evening, everyone’s thoughts turned to Thursday’s opening round, and who is most likely to shine.

James Colgan felt bullish about ascendant star Ludvig Aberg.

scottie scheffler and brooks koepka smile at the u.s. open separated by an arrow
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“I feel really good about Ludvig right now,” he said. “I know he’s been dealing with this knee injury, I know he hasn’t been playing necessarily his best stuff, but I think when you talk about a U.S. Open, specifically talking about contending at a U.S. Open, it’s a battle of the wits, it’s not a battle of ability. And I think he really has it between the ears. If you’ve seen him swing a golf club, you know he’s more than got the physical stuff to make it happen.”

Colgan was also impressed by what he saw from Max Homa and Xander Schauffele.

“He seemed really tense at the PGA,” Colgan said of Schauffele. “He seems relaxed at Pinehurst.”

The 2024 U.S. Open is ready to roll. Bring it on!

To catch up on all the GOLF team’s activities at Pinehurst, check out the full playlist below — and stay tuned for more Seen & Heard throughout the week.

Golf.com Editor

As a four-year member of Columbia’s inaugural class of female varsity golfers, Jessica can out-birdie everyone on the masthead. She can out-hustle them in the office, too, where she’s primarily responsible for producing both print and online features, and overseeing major special projects, such as GOLF’s inaugural Style Is­sue, which debuted in February 2018. Her origi­nal interview series, “A Round With,” debuted in November of 2015, and appeared in both in the magazine and in video form on GOLF.com.