11 players you probably forgot won the US Open

first_imgThe tight fairways and lush rough typical at U.S. Open courses tends to cause the greats of the game to rise to the top of the leaderboard. But not every U.S. Open champion is a golf legend, or even a household name.But winning a U.S. Open is an incredible accomplishment no matter the circumstances, and every champ deserves his time in the spotlight. In light of that, here are 11 players who you forgot won the U.S. Open (or didn’t know to begin with.)U.S. Open champions you forgotEd Furgol, 1954 U.S. Open championThere were a ton of lesser-known champions before 1950, so for the purposes of this list, we restricted our forgotten champs to 1955 and on… with one exception, the first name on our list: Ed Furgol. Ed Furgol makes the cut in part because of his high-quality name, but mostly for his origin story.Furgol injured himself falling off of parallel bars as a child. As a result of the accident, his left arm was 10 inches shorter than his right. Despite that, Furgol took up the game of golf and went on to win six PGA Tour events, including his lone major at the 1954 U.S. Open at legendary Baltusrol Golf Club in New Jersey.Ed Furgol waves to the crowd during the final round of the 1954 U.S. Open at BaltusrolBettmann/Getty ImagesDick Mayer, 1957Dick Mayer, who won a total of seven events in his PGA Tour career, probably should have won the ’54 U.S. Open, not Furgol. But a disastrous triple bogey on the final hole left him two shots behind the first player on our list.No matter. Only three years later, Mayer would erase that disappointment at Iverness Club in Ohio by defeating Cary Middlecoff in a playoff to finally lift the U.S. Open trophy. It would prove be his only victory in a major championship.Dick Mayer at the 1957 U.S. Open at Inverness Club in Ohio.Getty ImagesOrville Moody, 1969They don’t make U.S. Open champions like Orville Moody anymore. Moody joined the U.S. Army not long after graduating High School in 1952. He spent 14 years in the service, but, as the son of a golf course superintendent, he still worked golf into his military life. Moody headed up maintenance and instruction at Army golf courses, and even won three Korea Opens while stationed there.In 1967 and in his mid-thirties, Moody traded in his fatigues for a PGA Tour card. In his third year on Tour, Moody, who became known as “Sarge” by his fellow pros, captured the 1969 U.S. Open at Champions Golf Club in Houston. He never won another Tour event, though he did eventually graduate to the Champions Tour where he won the U.S. Senior Open.Orville Moody after winning the 1969 U.S Open.Bettmann / Contributor / Getty ImagesTony Jacklin, 1970Tony Jacklin is far from a forgotten name in the game of golf. Jacklin won two majors as a player and captained four-straight European Ryder Cup teams in the 1980s. But he makes this list for another reason.When Jacklin dominated the 1970 U.S. Open at Hazeltine with a seven-shot victory, he became the first Englishman to win the tournament since 1924. Incredibly, the world would have to wait another 40 years before another European player won the U.S. Open.A plaque commemorating Tony Jacklin’s 1970 U.S. Open win hangs in the clubhouse at Hazeltine.Getty ImagesLou Graham, 1975Like Moody, Louis Krebs Graham served in the Army before joining the PGA Tour, as part of the infantry regiment that guards the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery. Also like Moody, he didn’t let the Army take away from his golf game, winning the Inter-Service Championship while serving.Graham’s long career on Tour was highlighted by his triumph over John Mahaffey in a playoff at the 1975 U.S. Open at Medinah.Lou Graham pictured at the 1975 British Open.Getty ImagesJerry Pate, 1976Jerry Pate accumulated eight PGA Tour wins in the 1970s and 1980s, but it was his first victory that made the biggest mark.Pate won the 1976 U.S. Open at Atlanta Athletic Club as a 22-year-old rookie. That performance backed up his previous victory at the 1974 U.S. Amateur. He never won another major, but his final win came at the 1982 Players at TPC Sawgrass. He celebrated by jumping in the lake, but only after pushing Pete Dye and PGA Tour commissioner Deane Beman in first.last_img read more