''A long way to go,'' he said.
Woods had won eight straight times when he had at least a share of the lead going into the weekend at the majors, a streak that ended at the 2009 PGA Championship when Y.E. Yang chased him down from four shots back. Woods hasn't seriously contended in the final hour of a major since then.
Sharing the lead with other major champions might not be a coincidence.
''Whoever wins this golf tournament is going to be a great champion, somebody that's probably won events before, that can handle the emotions and can handle the adversity in a U.S. Open, and somebody with experience,'' Toms said. ''At least that's what I think. You never know. Strange things can happen, but I would think that you would see a lot of that on the leaderboard come late Sunday.''
And a stern test waits on the weekend. Asked for a winning score, McDowell deferred to the USGA.
''They can have whatever they want,'' McDowell said. ''If they want 5 over to win, 10 over to win it ... they can hide these pins away. I would have to imagine around level par.''
Woods, who played the difficult six-hole opening stretch at 1 under in the opening round, wasn't so fortunate the second time around.
He brilliantly bounced his tee shot onto the green at the par-3 third to 5 feet for birdie, and the outright lead at 2 under, and he appeared to have everything under control. That didn't last, though.
He pushed his approach into a bunker on the fifth and took bogey. He got a miserable break on the next hole when his second shot was suspended in the thick collar of the bunker, forcing him to grip his wedge on the steel shaft to play his shot, which went through the green for another bogey. And on the short par-4 seventh, which can be reached from the tee, he three-putted from 8 feet for a third straight bogey.
On the other side of the course, the cheers of disbelief were for Hossler.
The kid in braces, who didn't even win his state high school championship, rolled in a 6-foot birdie putt on the 520-yard first hole, putting him alone in the lead at 2 under.
''Unfortunately,'' he said, ''I kind of lost it coming in.''
It's wasn't the pressure. It wasn't the size of his audience perched along the hills. It wasn't the sight of his name listed over three major champions.
It was The Olympic Club.
Hossler dropped a shot on the next hole, though the real trouble came when he pulled his tee shot on the fourth into the hay and made double bogey. Then, he hit into a bunker on the adjacent hole for another bogey, lost another shot on the sixth and only slowed the damage with a chip-in behind the seventh green for birdie.
He still gets to sleep in on Saturday with his late tee time, and what 17-year-old doesn't like that?