|Bubba Watson, 2012 Masters Champion|
1. He’s never had a formal golf lesson. He doesn’t have a swing guru like just about everybody else on Tour these days. It’s a joy to watch Watson practicing on the range as he works the ball 30 or 40 yards in either direction. Better still, there’s no swing guru, with arms folded, studying Watson’s movements for angles, planes and all the other stuff we hear about ad nauseum when they talk about Tiger, Phil and others.
2. He plays fast. None of this spending endless time analyzing the shot or putt. Watson evaluates the situation, makes a decision and goes for it. A simple strategy that resulted in a Masters green jacket.
3. His stats tell the story. Watson, who’s 16th in the world rankings, is number one in Driving Distance (313 yards), Top 10 Finishes (4) and the Money Leader ($3.12 million). My two favorite stats, however, are he’s number one in Greens in Regulation From Other Than the Fairway and number one in Average Distance to the Hole after Tee Shot (151.9 yards).
4. He’s easy to spot on the golf course. Watson is the only golfer on the PGA Tour playing a pink driver and during Master’s week he wore only one style of outfit–all white. I also like the fact he’s not a spoiled country club kid. He grew up in the Florida panhandle playing public courses and later started his career at Faulkner State Community College in Alabama before transferring to the University of Georgia. Even more appealing, he once appeared in a music video with bib overalls and he owns the General Lee, the classic hot rod from the Dukes of Hazzard Show.
5. I love watching anybody– who during a playoff at Augusta National for a green jacket– can hit a 52 degree gap wedge through the trees off pine straw to a slick green more than 150 yards away and land it only 15 yards from the flag.