US Open Cut Explained: How Many Golfers Make It Through To The Weekend

The pressure's on to make the cut, but how many golfers make it through to the weekend at the US Open?

US Open flags blow in the wind
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The US Open is historically the most challenging tournament to win in the game of golf.

Only the best of the best can triumph, with past winners including some of the most illustrious names the sport has ever seen. And while winning is the prize everyone wants, even just making the cut can be hard enough in itself. 

You're competing against a field of over 150 exceptionally talented golfers, who are all vying to book their place in the weekend's proceedings. Don't forget, around 10,000 golfers attempt to qualify each year, too.

However, not everyone is guaranteed four days of golf - with the usual 36-hole cut coming into play for the weekend.

So how is the cut calculated?

Cut rule at the US Open:

The top 60 (and ties) make it through to the weekend at the US Open, meaning the the field is usually cut by over 50% after 36-holes. 

The most number of players to make the cut at the men's Major came in 1996 at Oakland Hills Country Club, where 108 players advanced through to the weekend as Steve Jones moved through the field to win his sole Major title. 

Last year, the cut at the US Open came in at +2, which is relatively low for the US Open.

US Open cut records:

The oldest player to ever make the cut at the US Open is Sam Snead, who in 1973 finished T29 at the tournament at the age of 61. Tom Watson and Jack Nicklaus both followed him, both having achieved the same feat at the ages of 60 and 58, respectively.

The youngest player to make the cut since World War II was Beau Hossler in 2012, who was a mere 17 years and three months old when he finished T29.

Nicklaus had also previously held that record too, making the cut at the championship when he was 18-years-old.

Do you get paid if you miss the cut at the US Open?

Interestingly, unlike many PGA Tour or DP World Tour Events, players at the men's Majors who fail to make the cut still do get paid. 

Those who miss the cut at the US Open are paid $10,000 for 36-holes of golf, while amateurs do not get remunerated. 

While they do miss out on the big prize pots from the US Open prize money that those who go on to make the weekend will obtain, that is still a pretty handsome amount of cash that will cover their expenses to play in the tournament. 

And while you may be wondering why players get paid for failing to make the weekend, USGA chief executive Mike Whan clarified the position of why players are rewarded for taking part.

"We pay you even if you miss the cut because we really believe that making the cut at the US Open is getting one of these 156 [spots]," Whan said. "Think about it, of 10,200 [who attempt to qualify], only 156 are here."

The situation differs slightly at the Open Championship, where players are paid on a sliding scale, while the PGA Championship also pays golfers who miss the cut.

Elliott Heath
News Editor

Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news team as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as five Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays off of a six handicap. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!

Elliott is currently playing:

Driver: Titleist TSR4

3 wood: Titleist TSi2

Hybrids: Titleist 816 H1

Irons: Mizuno MP5 5-PW

Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58

Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5

Ball: Srixon Z Star XV