Given that Phil Mickelson won't accept a special exemption into the U.S. Open, the 49-year-old may well miss the event. Mickelson needs to be in the top 60 in the Official World Golf Rankings (he is currently No. 72) by mid-June to earn a spot in the field, something a player of his stature can accomplish with one great week.
But a closer look suggests Mickelson has an uphill climb. In the last 12 months, Mickelson has dropped over 50 spots in the OWGR rankings, which indicates a steep decline that might be difficult to reverse at his age.