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As an event on the PGA Tour, the 2023 US Open will have a cut line at the halfway stage of the tournament where a certain number of players will be eliminated from the tournament. This will leave the rest of the field to battle it out over the weekend for the trophy and hefty prize pot.
With a total of 156 players teeing it up this week at Los Angeles Country Club, a large chunk of them will only be sticking around for two days with numbers needing to be cut down for the weekend’s action where players will play in pairs rather than three-balls.
Here is everything you need to know about the history of the cut line at the US Open and the projected cut line for the 2023 edition.
The US Open cut line – a history
Up until 1965, there was no cut line at all at the US Open meaning everyone who started the event was able to play through until the end. However, in 1965, the tournament organisers made a change and introduced the cut rule to the famous championship.
The main reason behind the change was due to the fact that USGA decided to extend the length of the event. Up until 1965, it was a three-day championship, however, ever since the US Open has been played over the course of four days.
The original cut line that was put in place stipulated that anyone who was within ten shots of the second-round leader was able to continue playing over the weekend. Anyone who was eleven shots adrift or more was eliminated and had to pack their bags on Friday night.
This rule was in place in 2011, however, there were some significant problems with it. For starters, with a cut rule like this, there is no definitive number on the number of players that would make the cut. For example, you may have a runaway leader meaning you could end up in a situation where only 20-30 players made it through to the weekend.
On the other hand, you could have an incredibly bunched field and have well over 100 players making it through to the weekend, making the cut line effectively pointless. In 1995, 108 players made it through to the weekend at the US Open which first sparked talk of a revised cut rule.
Eventually, in 2011, the USGA updated the cut rule which stipulated that the top 60 players – including ties- advanced through to the weekend. Anyone who finished lower than 60th was therefore eliminated from the tournament at the halfway stage. This rule has stayed the same ever since.
Cameron Smith's dream has been put on the back-burner after he failed to make the cut at the US Open.
— 9News Melbourne (@9NewsMelb) June 18, 2022
What was the cut line at the 2022 US Open?
During last year’s US Open, which was eventually won by Matt Fitzpatrick, the cut line stood at +3 after several players got off to quick starts. In fact, the eventual winning score (-6) was only one shot better than what the leaders were on at the halfway stage of the tournament.
In total, 71 players made it through to the weekend out of the 156 who started the tournament, with one of the pre-tournament favourites, Cameron Smith, one of the players eliminated after a disappointing first two days in Brookline.
What will the cut line be at the 2023 US Open?
There are a couple of reasons which make the cut line for the 2023 US Open difficult to predict. Firstly, the US Open is played at a different venue each year meaning historical data and patterns are largely irrelevant when it comes to projections as every golf course is different.
Secondly, the North Course at Los Angeles Country Club hasn’t hosted a PGA Tour event since the 1940s so there isn’t any historical data to go off in relation to previous events held there. Even if there was, organisers are expected to make the course as hard as possible in a bid to ensure the US Open remains the hardest tournament on the PGA Tournament calendar.
That being said, many experts are suggesting that the cut line will stand at around the +3 mark. This would mean that a significant number of players are likely to be under par at the halfway stage which isn’t always the case at the US Open.
As LA Country Club is such an unknown quantity, though, we will have to wait until the first round to get a better idea of a projected cut line.
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