On the 50th anniversary of Johnny Miller’s remarkable U.S. Open victory – he shot a final-round 63 at Oakmont Country Club – five past/current members from his alma mater (Brigham Young University) advanced from local qualifying with four claiming medalist honors at their respective sites. Incidentally, the current BYU coach is Miller’s son, Todd.
Former Cougar Rhett Rasmussen was the first to advance, carding a 65 to earn medalist honors at CasaBlanca Golf Club in Mesquite, Nev., on April 26. Rasmussen qualified for the 2018 U.S. Open, missing the cut at Shinnecock Hills.
Six days later at Ak-Chin Southern Dunes in Arizona current BYU player Brock Goyen took the top spot with a 67. A week later, 2023 West Coast Conference champion Zac Jones was the leading qualifier at Missoula (Mont.) Country Club, the same day Tyson Shelley fired a 66 at Broadlands Golf Course in Broomfield, Colo., to take medalist honors.
On May 10 at Riverton (Wyo.) Country Club, current Cougar Keanu Akina shot a 66 and then holed an 18-foot birdie putt in a playoff to take the second and final spot.
If all five should advance out of 36-hole final qualifying, it should be quite the BYU congregation at LACC, as Johnny Miller is receiving the 2023 Bob Jones Award, the USGA’s highest honor, early in championship week at a ceremony in Los Angeles.