ANONYMOUS PRO: The atmosphere was great. The Jersey and New York fans aren't afraid to mix it up. They yell the same stuff you'd hear at a Yankees game, but without the vulgarities. Golf gets too boring and too serious sometimes. This was more of a fun atmosphere. The fans were there to have a good time, have a few beers. There's nothing wrong with that.
SHIPNUCK: It feels as if you're at a Mets game. There's sort of the jabronie factor, the guy in the crowd yelling, "Hey, Sergio!"
VAN SICKLE: How would you define jabronie factor?
SHIPNUCK: Jabronie means jackass. It's a pressroom term for some of the players.
THE PHIL FACTOR
SHIPNUCK: Amy Mickelson is a gamer. And remember, Bethpage is where the cult of Phil began. That was the week during which he went from just another player to gallery favorite.
HACK: Bethpage will be a Phil lovefest.
VAN SICKLE: Phil became the Open mascot at Bethpage. The fans reacted to him as the 0-for-42 lovable loser underdog in majors, and got behind him.
GARRITY: Part of it was the period when Tiger's wins started to seem routine, mechanical, almost soulless. Then Tiger turns that upside down last year at Torrey, with the injury making him a bizarre kind of underdog, and shows all that heart in the most stirring major win of his career. Now he goes back to Bethpage with the likely possibility of being emotionally upstaged by Mickelson. It's fascinating and very strange.
ANONYMOUS PRO: Phil is the Arnold Palmer guy, the people's pro. They love him because he engages the fans more than Tiger. When Tiger plays, he's all business—he doesn't look at anybody, he doesn't interact with the crowd, he doesn't sign autographs. Last year Tiger had the crowd at Torrey Pines. Bethpage is Phil's place, for sure.