Jordan Spieth is a superb golfer and may be even a better human being.

By age 23, Spieth had won three of golf’s four major championships, something only Jack Nicklaus has accomplished.  In five years as a professional, he has won 14 events, including 11 on the PGA Tour.

Spieth has posted 50 top-ten finishes and has made 105 cuts in 125 starts.  After exploding onto the scene at 19, he has earned over $ 35 million in prize money.  Spieth won five times in 2015.

In April of that year — less than four years removed from high school — he delivered a record-setting performance to become the second-youngest Masters champion in history.

Two months later, Spieth won the U.S. Open to become the first male since Gene Sarazen in 1922 to win two majors before his 22nd birthday.  The talented Texan tied for second at the 2015 PGA, then finished the season with a victory at the Tour Championship.

Displaying an uncanny poise, confidence and focus, Jordan Spieth is golf’s greatest young talent since Tiger Woods.  In 20 career major championships, he has won three times while making 17 cuts.

In his first three Masters appearances, Spieth finished second, first, then second.  He has seven career top-five finishes in majors, and has been named to three Ryder Cup and three President’s Cup teams.

It took Phil Mickelson, a three time NCAA champion and Haskins Award winner as the outstanding collegiate golfer, a dozen years to win his first major championship.

Jordan Spieth captured his first major just months into his third professional season.  After finishing second in his Masters debut in 2014 to become the youngest runner-up in Augusta history, the cool 21-year-old dominated the event in 2015.

Spieth opened with an eight-under-par 64, then broke the 36-hole and 54-hole scoring records.  During the final round, he got to -19 before bogeying the final hole to finish at 18-under-par to tie Tiger Woods’ record score of 270, set in 1997.

Spieth’s 28 birdies set a Masters record and he became the first wire-to-wire Augusta winner since Raymond Floyd in 1976.  The victory vaulted Spieth to number two in the Official World Golf Ranking.

Born in Dallas July 27, 1993, Jordan Alexander Spieth is the eldest of three children.  His father, Shawn, is a former college baseball player who founded a media analytics start up, and his mother, Christine, is a college basketball player turned computer engineer.

Shawn and Chris encouraged their boys to play multiple sports.  Jordan grew up competing in soccer, baseball, football and basketball before shifting his focus to golf.

His brother Steven, who is two years younger, was a First Team All-Ivy League guard for Brown in 2016-17 and is now pursuing a professional basketball career.  Sister Ellie has disabilities.

Seven years younger than Jordan, Ellie was born prematurely with a still-undiagnosed neurological disorder that left her developmentally challenged.

As the New York Times put it, Ellie’s life is “a happy dance interrupted by cloudbursts.”  After her premature birth, she spent months in the hospital until she was strong enough to go home.

Ellie, who didn’t speak until four, is “the best thing that ever happened to our family,” according to Jordan, who is extremely close to his sister.  “She’s the most special part of our family.  She’s the funniest part of our family.”

At nine, Jordan mowed down a section of the family lawn to create a putting green.  He began taking golf lessons at 12 and quickly became a prodigy.

Three years later, Spieth helped the U.S. team to victory at the Junior Ryder Cup.  In 2009 and 2011, he captured the U.S. Junior Amateur and joined Tiger Woods as the tournament’s only two-time winners.

The American Junior Golf Association named Spieth 2009 Rolex Junior Player of the Year.  The following year – as a high school junior – he accepted an exemption to play in the PGA Tour’s Byron Nelson tournament in Dallas.

Spieth made the cut, becoming the sixth-youngest player to make the cut at a PGA Tour event, then finished tied for 16th place.  In May 2011, he skipped his high school graduation ceremony to play in the Byron Nelson again, finishing in a tie for 32nd.

That September, he helped the U.S. team to a Walker Cup victory over Great Britain.

Spieth attended Jesuit College Prep, a private all-boys school with an enrollment of 1,100, in North Dallas.

He entered Jesuit on a work grant program, completing over 100 hours of community service to the school in return.  An “A” student, Spieth wrote a note to the Murphy family – who funded the scholarship – thanking them for providing him the opportunity to attend Jesuit.

Spieth won the individual title at the Texas 5A state golf championships three times in four years, yet remained grounded.  As a senior, he spent one day a week with a group of fellow Jesuit students volunteering at Ellie’s school for children with special needs.

Spieth accepted a scholarship to the University of Texas, arriving in the fall of 2011.  As a freshman, he helped the Longhorns to an NCAA championship while being named All-Big 12 and First Team All-America.

In the summer following his freshman year at UT, Spieth finished tied for 21st at the U.S. Open and was low amateur.  He turned pro midway through his sophomore year, entered the 2013 Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego, and missed the cut.

His first win on Tour came seven months later, when he holed out from a greenside bunker on the 72nd hole of the John Deere Classic to get into a three-way playoff, then won on the fifth hole of sudden death.

With his victory, Spieth earned his Tour card while becoming the first teenager to win on Tour since Ralph Guldahl won the Santa Monica Open in 1931.

After climbing to tenth place on the PGA Tour money list, captain Fred Couples selected Spieth for the U.S. squad in the 2013 President’s Cup.  At the end of the season, the humble Texan was named 2013 Rookie of the Year.

In 2014, Spieth was selected to the Ryder Cup team, becoming the youngest American to play in the matches since Horton Smith in 1929.  He finished the 2014 season in dramatic fashion.

On November 30, Spieth shot a final round 63 to set a course record in capturing the Emirates Australian Open by six strokes.  One week later, he won the Hero World Challenge with a record 26-under par.

Speith’s first five seasons as a professional are mind-boggling.  In his first year on Tour, he earned Rookie-of-the-Year honors and cracked the top ten on the money list.

In year two, he held the final round lead in his first Masters and earned a spot on the Ryder Cup team.  Spieth’s third pro season was one for the ages.  In what would have been his senior year at Texas, he became only the sixth player to win the Masters and U.S. Open in the same year.

He finished tied for fourth at the 2015 Open Championship and was runner-up to Jason Day at the PGA Championship.  Spieth won five times in 2015, vaulting to the top spot in the Official World Golf Rankings while earning virtually every post-season honor, including the Vardon Trophy for lowest scoring average, Byron Nelson Award, Player of the Year and leading money winner.

Spieth’s fourth season saw him win three times while anchoring the U.S. team that captured the Ryder Cup for the first time since 2008.  Spieth opened his fifth season with a victory at Pebble Beach, his 100th tournament as a professional.

It was his ninth career win, tying him with Woods for most Tour victories before the age of 24.  The Dallas native won three times in 2017, including the Open Championship at Royal Birkdale to become the youngest American ever to win the Claret Jug.

Established in 2013, the Jordan Spieth Family Foundation supports three things that are nearest and dearest to the young golfer’s heart – junior golf, military families and special needs children who grow into special needs adults.

Jordan Spieth had 13 top-ten finishes in 24 events during the 2017 season and helped the U.S. team to its tenth win in its last 12 President’s Cups.

 

“Being Ellie’s brother humbles me every day of my life.”
– Jordan Spieth


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *