DUBLIN, Ohio — William McGirt was in the locker room at Muirfield Village Golf Club following last year’s first round of the Memorial when he walked over and introduced himself to Jack Nicklaus.
“Oh, OK. How did it go today?” Nicklaus asked.
“I shot 2-under the first round,” McGirt answered.
“Well, you didn’t hurt yourself.”
Three days later the conversation lasted a tad longer when McGirt shook Nicklaus’ hand on the green of the 18th hole and received the championship hardware, his first PGA Tour title in hand.
“To win Mr. Nicklaus’ tournament is kind of like winning a green jacket,” McGirt said. “It’s something you dream about your whole life, to walk off 18 and get to shake his hand. It’s a pretty special moment.”
The Memorial has a lot of drawing cards that lure the game’s best players to Ohio each year. A strong field (nine of the top 15 players in the world are here, including world No. 1 Dustin Johnson). The immaculate, stout Muirfield Village course. The…