MORE INTERVIEWS: FedEx St. Jude Classic transcripts
Q. 66 for Davis Love, and for you, this was a group that was going really well all day long. What was the feeling like about playing with those two guys?
DAVIS LOVE III: Well, we all started well, you know, we got off to a good start. I think that's important in this course. You can get behind the 8-ball and every hole could look like a bogey hole. The way we were playing the first five holes, it looked good. It was a good start and great pairing.
Q. The pace of play, you guys were playing fast.
DAVIS LOVE III: You know you're going to play fast if you play with Brandt. Brandt is really fast, Dustin is fast, and I'm pretty quick. We were a fast group. We still waited a lot, but it was a nice, quick round. That course plays pretty fast for a hard course.
Q. Overall, how confident you are getting back after --
DAVIS LOVE III: I still hit some bad shots. At THE PLAYERS and Memorial I felt like I was playing better than I was scoring. I think it's rust. I'm excited to be back and I'm anxious and I want to play better than I'm playing. I'm a little bit tired from the two 36-hole qualifiers as well. You got to be a little bit more patient and polished. That's going to take some rounds of golf to get back.
Q. Back and playing well. Much better after wrapping up your day with that birdie on 18. Just talk about the day throughout and a good day for you?
DAVIS LOVE III: It was a good day for our whole group. Brandt had a little bit of a rough patch and made some bogeys. We all made some bogeys, but all in all, we made a bunch of birdies for our group. It was a good day. It's nice to do that in the afternoon.
Now we turn around tomorrow morning, conditions should be even better for scoring, and we're all on a roll so it will work out for us, we hope.
Q. Did you know the position you were in going up to 18, knowing that another birdie would show up even closer to the top of the leaderboard?
DAVIS LOVE III: You know your name is on the leaderboard. It's hard not to see them on here. It's a nice place to be. We're trying to birdie every hole early in the week. Lot of tricky holes out there. Got to get the ball in the fairway. You can stay focused.
I played well here last year, so did Dustin, obviously. I was watching the clubs he was hitting off the tee and we're both just trying -- we're long hitters. Trying to get the ball in the fairway and give ourselves as many chances as we can. Trying to stay patient.
Q. With that grouping do you find yourself, like you said, kind of seeing what the other guys are doing, knowing it could help your game over the first 36 holes?
DAVIS LOVE III: We all got off to a good start. I birdied the 1st and we all started well. Dustin eagled the 3rd. He was 5-under real quick. We felt like we were all playing pretty well and that's a good feeling. And I'm playing with two of my Ryder Cup guys and guys that I played with a lot of golf the past four, five years. It was a lot of fun.
Q. Talk about your rounds here. What is it about your success here?
DAVIS LOVE III: I enjoy this golf course. I've always enjoyed it. With the bermuda greens, Dustin and I were talking, it's like we putt at home. We're used to fast, firm, bermuda greens. Some guys don't like putting on them. Again, this is a lot like Hilton Head or some of the courses we play that you have to think your way around the golf course and it's a challenge. I think it makes me focus real well.
Q. Was the wind out of the north a little bit disconcerting?
DAVIS LOVE III: It seemed to blow hard whenever there was a lake around like the par 3s and 18, but it wasn't blowing hard. We've been playing in some really hard wind in Texas and in Ohio with extremes last week, it blew hard every day. This was a nice break today. It looks like we're going to have a nice couple days going into the weekend.
Q. As a veteran you know better than anybody you can't win it on Thursday but you can lose it. Is it just a placement, get yourself going kind of round as you head into Friday?
DAVIS LOVE III: Like last year scores are not extremely low around here. You don't have to shoot 10-under every day to win. You got to play patient golf. I didn't go out with a number in my head. I didn't say 4-under would be good or 8-under would be good. I tried to keep up with Dustin and Brandt.
Q. So 66 is good.
DAVIS LOVE III: 66 is always good. I'll take four of them.
Q. Is this a place where course management is at a premium?
DAVIS LOVE III: You have to hit the fairways. You have to hit it in the right place in the fairways on some holes to be able to get it close. You have to look at your pin sheet before you tee off on some holes. You have to make sure you know what you're doing. You can't come out here and smash it around.
That's why it's so impressive. I put a lot of stock in picking Dustin because of watching him play here last year. He can play golf. He just can't go and smash the ball around and hope it turns out. You have to think your away around this golf course. It's challenging but it's very fair.