There’s something about that third year as a full-time professional golfer that seems to be the kick into gear. With Jordan Spieth now owner of the Masters and US Open titles in his third year on the PGA Tour, and doing so still a month away from his 22nd birthday, it had us thinking back to the top two other prodigies of the last 20 years, and how their third seasons shaped up.
The results are no surprise – all three men – Spieth, Tiger Woods, and Rory McIlroy – took the golf world by storm in that third year. What Spieth dose from here to emulate the other two remains to be seen.
Third Year: 2015 (in progress)
Age: 21 (22 in July)
Wins: 4 – Hero World Challenge, The Masters, US Open, Valspar Open,
Top 10 finishes : 10 – four wins; 2nd: Valero Texas Open; Shell Houston Open; Colonial; T-3rd: The Memorial; T-4th: Northern Trust Open; T-7th: Waste Management Phoenix Open; AT&T Pebble Beach National
Third Year: 2010
Age: 20 (21 in May)
Wins: 1 – Quail Hollow Championship
Top 10 finishes: 12 – 1 win; T-3rd: The Open Championship; PGA Championship; Abu Dhabi; T-4th: Chevron World Challenge; Alstom Open; T-5th: WGC-HSBC Champions; Dubai World Championship; T-6th: Omega Dubai Desert Classic; UBS Hong Kong Open; T-9th: WGC-Bridgestone; T-10th: The Memorial
Third Year: 1999
Wins: 9 – The World Cup of Golf, WGC-American Express Championship; The TOUR Championship; National Car Rental Golf Classic; WGC-NEC Invitational; PGA Championship; Motorola Western Open; The Memorial; Buick Invitational
Top 10 finishes: 17 – 9 wins; T-2nd: Nissan Open; T-3rd: US Open; Phoenix Open; T-5th: WGC-Match Play; Mercedes Championship; T-7th: British Open; Byron Nelson Classic; T-10th: The PLAYERS Championship