Tiger Woods isn’t retired just yet, but he is no longer the face of golf. That title belongs to 24-year-old Jordan Spieth, who has been the most dominant player in golf since the start of 2015.
It’s become a tired subject to compare Spieth to Woods, but you have to admit the two have similarities. The most glaring is their knack for coming up clutch on the greens in major championships. Spieth’s Scotty Cameron putter was his greatest asset during the final round of The Open this year. He shot five-under on the final five holes but more importantly had one-putts on holes 14-17. Including a 48-foot eagle putt on 15.
That finish by Spieth will go down as one of the greatest in the game’s history. If there is anyone who can shoulder the weight of lofty expectations, it’s Jordan Spieth.
A moment to reflect. pic.twitter.com/9QjSp4GHLm
— The Open (@TheOpen) July 25, 2017
It Begins: PGA Tour Card
It didn’t take long for Spieth to join the PGA Tour, especially after the abundance of success he had in his amateur and collegiate careers. In 2009, as a 16-year-old, Spieth won the U.S. Amateur and Texas Class 5A High School State Championship that season. He would successfully defend that title in 2010 and 2011, with Tiger Woods as the only one to do the same.
Spieth’s collegiate career began with Texas in 2011, where he would lead the Long Horns to a National Championship. During that season Spieth won three individual events and led his team in scoring average. He took home Big 12 Freshman of the Year and Player of the Year honors and was selected to be first-team All-American.
In the middle of the 2012-2013 school year, Spieth decided to turn pro and play his way onto the PGA Tour. He made five starts as an amateur in 2012, including the U.S. Open. His finish T-21 (low amateur) in that major would help propel him to the No.1 spot on the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
At 19-years-old in 2013, Spieth turned in a rookie season for the ages. Before he was unanimously named 2013 Rookie of the Year, he finished in the top-10 nine times and captured his first win at the John Deere Classic and became the youngest winner on the PGA Tour since Ralph Guldahl in 1931.
On this date in 2013, Jordan Spieth, 19, became first teenager to win on PGA Tour since 1931, winning John Deere on fifth hole of playoff. pic.twitter.com/lajziVuwTU
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) July 14, 2017
First Victory And Those That Followed
Spieth’s first win may have come at the 2013 Joh Deere Classic, but that’s not the tournament that put him on the map. His wire-to-wire victory at the 2015 Masters was the tournament that grabbed the attention of not only America but the entire world.
It was Spieth’s “Hello world”.
Spieth actually almost won in his Masters debut appearance but finished T-2 behind Bubba Watson. Spieth wouldn’t allow that to happen in 2015. He opened his second Masters tournament with an eight-under 64 and kept the momentum rolling for the next three days posting scores of 66, 70, and 70.
A then 21-year-old Spieth tied Tiger Woods for the lowest 72-hole finish in Masters history (270 strokes) which was set in 1997 – Tiger was 21 at the time just like Spieth, hence the slew of comparisons.
That 2015 season for Spieth was one of the most dominant in recent history. After winning The Masters, Spieth won the U.S. Open, finished fourth at The Open, and second at the PGA Championship. It was pretty easy to pick Spieth as the 2015 PGA Player of the Year after he was so close to completing the ‘Spieth Slam’.
Drama On And Off The Course:
Not one ounce of drama has come from Spieth off the course. It’s quite the opposite when it comes to this good doer.
In 2013, Spieth started the Jordan Spieth Family Foundation to build awareness and give financial aid to families who have children with special needs. Spieth’s inspiration for this foundation stems from his sister, Ellie, who has special needs. He has said many times that having Ellie in his life has kept him grounded while he faces the ‘challenges’ that success and money bring.
The foundation also supports military families and youth golf.
Stats And Where They Are Now:
At the end of the 2017 season, Spieth was ranked second in both the OWGR (Dustin Johnson was No.1) and FedEx Cup points (Justin Thomas was No.1). He had 12 Top-10 finishes, including three victories: The Open, Travelers Championship, and the Pebble Beach Pro-Am.
Spieth’s 68.846 scoring average was first on the PGA Tour. He also finished first in birdie average (4.49 per round) and strokes gained approach-the-green (.906).
He concluded the 2017 season by helping the U.S. capture a Presidents Cup victory. Spieth provided three wins as the U.S. blew out the International team 19-11.
What The Future Holds:
The 3-time major champion will begin his 2017-18 season when he travels to Emirates Australian Open in November.
As of this day, Jordan Spieth is the most gifted golfer on the face of the earth. He has been bestowed a gift to play this game at a legendary level. Many people forget that he is still under the age of 25 and that there is so much he can do to keep improving on the foundation he has already built.
The youngster seems destined to win double-digit major championships as he paves his road to golf’s hall of fame in a few decades.
— Golf Channel (@GolfChannel) October 16, 2017