Prior to the 1990 U.S. Open at Chicago's Medinah No. 3, Hale Irwin's public persona projected all the pizzazz of an insurance salesman. One putt shattered that perception. The 45-year-old Irwin had been awarded a special exemption to play but he wasn't supposed to win. Then again, neither was journeyman Mike Donald.
Irwin came to the final regulation hole needing a 45-foot birdie putt for a 67. Astonishingly, he rolled it in. The gallery went berserk, and unexpectedly, so did Irwin. He galloped around the green, raising his arms in joy and high-fiving spectators. Donald later tied him and even matched Irwin's 74 in the Monday playoff, but on the first extra hole Irwin became the oldest U.S. Open winner ever.