1977 U.S. Open: Overcoming a Death Threat

The 1977 U.S. Open was the 77th time the tournament was played. The champion won it despite (literally) playing under a death threat.

Winner: Hubert Green, 278

Where it was played: Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma

Tournament dates: June 16-19, 1977

Leader after first round: Larry Nelson, Tom Purtzer, Grier Jones, Florentino Molina, Hubert Green, Rod Funseth and Terry Diehl, 69

Leader after second round: Hubert Green, 136

Leader after third round: Hubert Green, 208

Notable Notes: Hubert Green held a one-stroke lead entering the final round. But after making birdies on holes 12 and 14, Green was informed that a death threat had been made against him by phone, the caller saying he was going to shoot Green on the course. Was it a serious threat? It was taken seriously, anyway: police walked along with Green, and Green walked apart from his fellow competitors. How did Green react? He birdied the two holes immediately after being informed of the threat and won by a stroke over 1975 winner Lou Graham.

Final Scores

Hubert Green 69-67-72-70—278
Lou Graham 72-71-68-68—279
Tom Weiskopf 71-71-68-71—281
Tom Purtzer 69-69-72-72—282
Jay Haas 72-68-71-72—283
Gary Jacobsen 73-70-67-73—283
Lyn Lott 73-73-68-70—284
Terry Diehl 69-68-73-74—284
Tom Watson 74-72-71-67—284
Mike McCullough 73-73-69-70—285
Rod Funseth 69-70-72-74—285
Peter Oosterhuis 71-70-74-70—285
Jack Nicklaus 74-68-71-72—285
Al Geiberger 70-71-75-69—285
Gary Player 72-67-71-75—285
Steve Melnyk 70-73-70-73—286
Joe Inman 70-70-72-74—286
Wally Armstrong 71-70-70-75—286
Arnold Palmer 70-72-73-72—287
Bruce Lietzke 74-68-71-74—287
Billy Kratzert 73-69-75-70—287
Jerry McGee 76-69-76-66—287
Ron Streck 73-73-71-71—288
Sam Adams 70-69-76-73—288
Andy Bean 71-70-68-79—288
Gay Brewer 73-72-70-74—289
Mike Morley 70-73-74-73—290
George Archer 73-72-74-71—290
Lee Trevino 74-70-73-73—290
J.C. Snead 72-75-68-75—290
Tom Kite 71-73-70-76—290
Johnny Miller 71-73-70-76—290
John Lister 72-73-68-77—290
Don Padgett 70-74-66-80—290
Graham Marsh 74-72-72-73—291
Grier Jones 69-75-72-75—291
Rod Curl 75-71-73-72—291
Jim Simons 75-67-71-78—291
Florentino Molina 69-76-75-72—292
Rik Massengale 71-72-77-72—292
Mark Hayes 76-68-73-76—293
Hale Irwin 73-71-77-72—293
Gil Morgan 76-70-69-78—293
Phil Hancock 74-73-72-75—294
Bruce Fleisher 73-69-74-78—294
Fuzzy Zoeller 73-69-79-73—294
Raymond Floyd 73-73-78-71—295
David Canipe 74-73-70-78—295
George Burns 70-75-76-75—296
Jim Dent 76-71-74-75—296
Ben Crenshaw 74-71-72-79—296
Morris Hatalsky 70-74-72-80—296
Bill Mallon 73-71-77-77—298
a-Lindy Miller 73-73-76-77—299
Larry Nelson 69-75-78-77—299
John Melnick 71-75-78-75—299
Bob E. Smith 70-77-77-76—300
a-John Fought 73-74-78-77—302
Vince Bizik 71-76-76-79—302
Chi Chi Rodriguez 74-71-75-84—304

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