OAKMONT, Pa. -- Rory McIlroy had a game plan for Oakmont and this U.S. Open. It didn't play out very well in his two-day first round, as the four-time major winner turned in 7-over 77 that has him 11 strokes back of first-wave leader Andrew Landry.
"I think for me the toughest thing is just trying to stay positive and not get too down on myself and try to go out there," McIlroy said after the round on Friday. "I think right now I'm just trying to stay as positive as I can."
There's not a whole lot of good that can be said for his first-round effort. He hit five of 14 fairways, just eight greens in regulation and needed 34 putts to get around Oakmont. We all knew McIlroy, a streaky-at-best putter, would struggle on these greens so long as they maintained speed. We didn't know he would struggle with his swing.
"Honestly, I've been struggling with my swing, even the practice rounds a little bit," he said.
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Unfortunately, between three weather delays, McIlroy hasn't found time to make the right changes.
"I know what I'm doing, but it's hard to change it out there," he added. "It's been hard to give it any sort of time this week to work on it, especially I knew, whenever I got off the course last night, I knew, and it was just hard to work on anything."
Now that he's so far behind and so much rain has fallen on Oakmont, McIlroy, who won't see the course again until Saturday for his second round, thinks he might flip his approach and play his preferred style of golf -- even if that putting a square ball in a round hole.
"With the way the golf course is, with it being so soft," he said, "I might just go out there in the second round and hit a lot of drivers and try to be as aggressive as I possibly can be."