There are some remarkable similarities between Jordan Spieth’s first Masters victory this weekend and Tiger Woods’ first win at Augusta National in 1997. Both golfers earned the green jacket at 21 years old with a shared scoring record of 270 (18 under).
Spieth established another record with 28 birdies but, if you must compare, the numbers for Woods become more impressive after that.
The 1997 Masters was his first start as a professional at Augusta National and his first crack at a major championship. The course may have been shorter, but it was tougher and Woods blew away the field by 12 shots. As the first African American to win the green jacket, he also had more of an influence on his sport, as evidenced by soaring television ratings.
The victory triggered a historic career that put golf back in the spotlight. The rising popularity and corporate sponsorship he attracted had a lot to do with the winner’s purse jumping from $486,000 in 1997 to $1.8 million by 2015.
|Category|| Woods|| Spieth|
|Age|| 21 yrs-3 mos.|| 21 yrs-8 mos.|
|Previous PGA Tour starts|| 28|| 67|
|Previous PGA Tour wins|| 2|| 2|
|Masters start (as pro)|| 1st|| 2nd|
|Majors start (as pro)|| 1st|| 8th|
|Score|| 270 (-18)|| 270 (-18)|
|Margin of victory|| 12 shots|| 4 shots|
|Purse|| $486,000|| $1.8 million|
|Birdies|| 21 (2 eagles)|| 28 (Masters record)|
|Bogeys|| 7|| 8 (1 double)|
|Sunday TV ratings/share|| 14.1/31|| 9.6/20|