Webb Simpson returns home, still seeking first win
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- As Webb Simpson walked off the driving range late Tuesday afternoon at Quail Hollow, he received praise and sympathy. Praise because he played well last week in New Orleans, losing in a playoff to Bubba Watson. Sympathy because Simpson was penalized one stroke when his ball moved on the green when he addressed it.
Simpson said the players can probably all agree on one thing -- it's a rule that needs to be changed.
The USGA and the R&A have been listening, according to USGA Vice President Thomas O'Toole, who said Monday at the U.S. Open media day at Congressional that the rule has been under scrutiny for at least seven years and a change could be made soon.
Simpson was on the 15th green Sunday at the Zurich Classic, nursing a one-shot lead and about to tap in for par, when his ball suddenly moved. Simpson said it was likely due to fast greens and wind.
Adding to the frustration, Simpson is still trying to break through for his first PGA Tour win.
"Unless you're Tiger Woods, you don't have chances to win every week, and when you're in that situation you want to take advantage of it," Simpson said. "When you don't, it's a little discouraging. But it's good we have 30 chances to win out here every year."
Simpson would love another chance this week at Quail Hollow. He was born in Raleigh and went to Wake Forest, and he moved his family to Charlotte last November.
"We've got a lot of friends and family here, so it's been great," he said. "I've been looking forward [to Quail Hollow] all year."
In two previous starts here, Simpson missed the cut both times, but he's come into this event on such a hot streak. In 10 starts this season, Simpson has seven top-25s, including runner-up finishes at the Transitions and New Orleans.
"The greens get quick [at Quail Hollow], and I love quick greens," Simpson said. "I really like where my game is right now, and hopefully I'll be able to play the course well."
(Photo: Hunter Martin/Getty Images)