|Jordan Spieth, photo PGA.com|
Thursday, July 16, 2015
2011 NHSCA Boys’ Golfer of the Year Jordan Spieth chases history
by Jeff Fisher
Host, NHSCA Sports Hour
After an opening round 67 at the British Open at St. Andrews in Scotland, the birthplace of golf, 21-year old Jordan Spieth, who was the 2011 NHSCA Boys’ Golfer of the Year, has put himself in position to have a shot at winning his third straight Grand Slam event and golfing history.
If the Dallas Jesuit (Texas) grad, who is nearing his 22nd birthday, wins at St. Andrews, he would be only the second golfer to win the Masters, the U.S. Open and the British Open in the same calendar year — Ben Hogan did it in 1953.
Since Hogan pulled-off the trio of victories, only Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Tiger Woods have come to the British Open with a chance at a Grand Slam. The last person to be in position to win three straight Grand Slam events was Woods in 2002. Woods wasn’t able to win at Muirfield.
“I like to study the history of golf, and it’s extremely special what this year has brought to our team,” Spieth told the media at St. Andrews in Scotland. “And to have a chance to do what only one other person in the history of golf has done ... I’m sure embracing that opportunity.”
This is Spieth’s third appearance in the British Open — last year, Spieth finished 36th; he finished 44th in 2013.
Spieth is coming off his fourth win of the year last weekend when he won the John Deere Classic.
Now a history lesson….
If Spieth is able to make history and capture the Claret Jug, the trophy given to the winner of the British Open, he’ll then turn his attention to winning the PGA Championship at Whistling Straits in Wisconsin next month. No modern day player has ever won golf’s Grand Slam during the modern era.
Bobby Jones, the co-founder of the Masters, is the only golfer to complete a Grand Slam in a calendar year, but that was in 1930 before the Masters existed. Jones won his slam by capturing both the open and amateur championships in the United States and the United Kingdom.
Below is what was written about Spieth’s choice as 2011 NHSCA Boys’ Golfer of the Year.
Not only did the 6-foot Spieth become the first golfer to win three 5A state titles, but also he did it in dominating fashion. The University of Texas recruit followed an opening-round 68 with a closing 64 that included eight birdies and no bogeys – and his 12-under-par total of 132 gave him a seven-stroke victory. He finished 13th in state as a freshman. Prior to the start of his final high school season, Spieth ended his junior golf career on a high note, winning the HP Boys Championship at Carlton Woods. It was his fifth Junior victory and his 18th consecutive Top 10 finish. Spieth was the U.S. Junior Amateur champion in 2009, and was the Rolex Junior Player of the Year that year. He is a three-time Rolex First Team Junior All-American. Perhaps the highlight of Spieth’s career to date, however, came last May, when, playing on a sponsor’s exemption, he finished tied for 16th in a PGA Tour event, the HP Byron Nelson Classic. Spieth carded rounds of 68-69-67-72 for a 4-under-par 276, just six shots behind tournament champion Jason Day, and he became the sixth-youngest player ever to make a PGA Tour cut.