Tiger Woods Played Well at the Masters, But Will All the Young Stars Prevent Him From Winning Another Major?
The 2015 Masters was one for the record books. There were so many storylines, from Phil to Tiger to the new young face in American golf, 21-year-old Jordan Spieth. The year-over-year ratings were up daily: From 1.5 to 2.2 on Thursday, 1.8 to 2.1 on Friday, and CBS saw a 48% jump to 6.5 on Saturday making it the highest-rated third round at the Masters since 2011 when the network drew a 6.8.
Jordan Spieth, BOOM!
Jordan Spieth’s win over a star-studded field – and his margin of victory – had Jim Nantz of CBS gushing afterward that it will go down in the annals of Augusta as one of the greatest ever. Spieth was one off the course tournament record on Thursday when he shot 64, he set a new low for the first 36-holes at 130, and a new low for the first 54-holes at 200. He’s one of only five champions to go wire-to-wire and he did it with big names like Mickelson, Rose, McIlroy, Johnson, and Woods all right behind him.
America has been looking for a new face since Tiger’s decline began that fateful Thanksgiving weekend in 2009, and even though Tiger showed he is clearly not done, we know that he’s past his prime and we probably won’t see the Tiger of old destroying the field. Spieth can definitely be that next face of golf, but the real question is will America get behind a kid that doesn’t exactly make viewers want to stand up and scream, “HELL YEAH!” at their TV?
Spieth’s future is promising and his record over the last two years proves that. In 2015 he already has three wins, including his first major with the Masters, and five other top ten finishes. It’s very possible that he can inspire kids across the country to pick up a golf club for the first time.
Is Tiger back?
I’m not sure you can say a guy with as decorated a career as Tiger Woods will ever be done until he decides to put his clubs away. Tiger showed us all that he can take time off after playing absolutely horrendous golf and work his ass off to come back during the toughest tournament, be in the hunt on Saturday and finish in the red. I don’t think anyone but Tiger saw that coming, although I refused to ever believe he was done. Tiger will be around a while, and it’s very likely he’ll win another tournament. Will that be a major? Who knows, but it shouldn’t be ruled out.
What’s next for Rory?
Rory McIlroy’s 2015 Masters bid improved over the course of four rounds, but it was too late. Sure, he finished fourth, but after finishing tied for 15th at the Masters in 2011, tied for 40th in 2012, tied for 25th in 2013, and tied for eighth in 2014, the guy who was supposed to be the “next Tiger” can’t seem to get over the hump and finish off a career grand slam with a Masters win. Rory has no PGA Tour wins in 2015, but at 25-years-old, he’s got plenty of time left to collect that grand slam.
Phil Mickelson, man he’s fun to watch.
Lefty won’t go away. Phil Mickelson, finished tied for second, but hasn’t won a tournament – other than the President’s Cup – since winning The Open Championship in 2013. His last two Masters appearances entering this year weren’t great either, but when he gets going at Augusta, you can bet your ass he’s going to put on a show. We saw that with his putt on 16 during the third round, his chip on 7 and his bunker shot on 15 during the final round. Phil showed that even at 44, you can still put yourself in contention to win the Masters against these young guys.
Will the good Justin Rose stick around?
With one major championship win under his belt, the 2013 U.S. Open, Justin Rose has been hit-or-miss since. Rose has one other win since that major win, the Quicken Loans National in 2014. This year Rose only two top 10 finishes, including this Masters appearance, and has finished outside of the top 35 or missed the cut in eight tourneys he’s participated in. He’s only 34, but with Spieth and Rory around, he’s got a tough road ahead to collect another major win.
Dustin Johnson, what a comeback.
Since stepping away from the game, Dustin Johnson has been solid. He appears to have corrected whatever was wrong in his personal life, and welcomed the birth of his son. His top ten finish at Augusta was his best showing at a major championship since finishing tied for fourth at the U.S. Open in 2014, and it was not without highlights. Johnson set a record also, making eagle on three of the four par-5’s. Hopefully we see a lot more good outings from him this year.
In review, the 2015 Masters provided plenty of highlights, from Tiger throwing clubs and cursing, Phil making great putts, to Jordan Spieth hitting the pin and setting tournament records. It was a spectacular tournament that many thought would be boring and wouldn’t include much of a star-studded field on Sunday since Tiger was supposed to play badly. Well, that didn’t happen and for those who love this sport, the weekend was wonderful. Also, the ratings were up!
Golf wins again.