5. Mike Cowan » The caddie for Jim Furyk helped his boss negotiate Olympic's brutal opening six holes in 1-under par. With his accurate driver and sure putting stroke, 2003 Open champ Furyk has a game suited to this course.
4. Television mics » It was a fine day for the talking heads of NBC and ESPN, especially reporter Jimmy Roberts, outspoken Johnny Miller and smooth Mike Tirico. One suggestion: More of tone-perfect Scott Van Pelt and less of blowhard Chris Berman.
3. Mike Davis » After a tough year at Congressional, the USGA executive director and course setup guru re-established the Open as the toughest test in golf, at least for one round. A few features that were criticized for their severity in the practice rounds -- specifically the shaved hillsides on Nos. 13 and 17 -- were softened.
2. Michael Allen » Considering Olympic has been his home club for 39 years, Allen, 53, was thrilled just to qualify. But thanks in part to a holed 8-iron on No. 14 for an eagle 2, the oldest player in the field shot 71 and has a chance to not only make it to the weekend, but perhaps even contend.
1. Michael Thompson »
The PGA Tour player and qualifier at Woodmont shot 66, finding the fast greens of Olympic to his liking, needing only 22 putts. The 27-year-old made three bogeys in the rugged opening six holes but rallied to birdie six of the final 12 holes.
- Kevin Dunleavy