Mike Davis: 2020 U.S. Open nearly held in Los Angeles in December

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MAMARONECK, N.Y. – The USGA lifted the veil on how the U.S. Open landed in its post-quarantine September slot with a surprising revelation that the original Plan B was vastly different.

Association CEO Mike Davis explained on Wednesday at Winged Foot, which was originally scheduled to host the championship in June, that because of the initial scramble to reorganize the professional golf calendar in the wake of the pandemic, it appeared as if the U.S. Open would be played in December.

“To be very transparent with you, we thought we were going to be playing the U.S. Open in December in Los Angeles. We were that close,” Davis said.

U.S. Open: Full-field tee times | Full coverage

The U.S. Open is scheduled to be played on Los Angeles Country Club’s North Course in 2023 and considering the early impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the New York metropolitan area there were concerns whether the championship could be played at Winged Foot in 2020, which prompted the potential move.

That changed when the R&A announced this year’s Open Championship would be canceled and gave the USGA some flexibility to reschedule earlier in the fall.

“It really wasn’t until the day before we went public with the schedule that we realized that the R&A’s Open across the pond couldn’t be played in September,” Davis said, “which gave us an opportunity to play in September at this wonderful, storied golf course.”