Originally written on SportsBlooded  |  Last updated 6/17/12

THOUSAND OAKS, CA - DECEMBER 06: Graeme McDowell of Northern Ireland reacts to his tee shot on the first hole during the fourth round of the Chevron World Challenge at Sherwood Country Club on December 6, 2009 in Thousand Oaks, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

54 holes of golf have been played at the 2012 U.S. Open are there are only two players in the red numbers, Jim Furyk and Graeme McDowell. Sitting at 1-under, Furyk and McDowell have a two shot lead on Fredrik Jacobson and a three shot lead on 4 players who are tied at 2-over. Tiger Woods would be one of these players at 2-over if not for his collapse on the last three holes yesterday. He not only collapsed on the last three holes, bogeying 16 and 18, he fell apart during his entire round, shooting a 5-over 75 which included 6 bogies and only 1 birdie. He currently sits at 4-over. This is not a course that will make it easy for Tiger to come back from a 5-shot deficit. He’s more likely to pull back into contention with the players in front of him falling apart. In order to have a chance at making a run at the trophy, Tiger will have to find his birdie stroke.

If Tiger was the sob story of the day, McDowell was the triumphant story. After a 2-over 72 on Friday, McDowell shot a 2-under 68 and has a great opportunity to win his 2nd U.S. Open in the past 3 years. McDowell tends to flourish at the Open in comparison to how he fairs in the other major tournaments. Despite his Open success, he’s actually missed the cut in 3 of his last 6 major tournaments. Check out the round 3 highlights from McDowell, Tiger and the rest of the leaders ...

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