AUGUSTA, Ga. — Scottie Scheffler doesn’t care about legacy. He figures that in 100 years he’ll be forgotten anyway, so don’t ask him to wax poetic about his position in the game (the rankings are just an algorithm, he says) or how winning a major has changed him.
The way 26-year-old Scheffler sees it, he’s still the same guy, driving the same white 2012 GMC Yukon XL his father bought in Augusta after the family’s car broke down at the Masters. The Yukon has close to 190,000 miles on it now, but Scheffler credits most of those to his father.
“I drive like three places at home,” he said. “I go to the golf course, where I work out and a restaurant that’s usually within five minutes of the house.”
Scheffler’s idea of a splurge is to buy a nice bottle of tequila after a win to share with family and friends.
Masters 2023 leaderboard: Get the latest news from Augusta
But that doesn’t mean the Champions Dinner on Tuesday night won’t mean something to the World No. 1, who gets emotional more than he’d like. The weight of the moment hit him earlier today as he was leaving the locker room and saw Augusta staff setting up the dinner.
“I was like, oh, boy, here it comes,” he said.
Only three players have successfully defended at the Masters: Jack Nicklaus (1965, 1966), Nick Faldo (1989, 1990) and Tiger Woods (2001, 2002).
When asked what’s required to win back-to-back here, Woods said an understanding of how to play the course, noting that caddie Ted Scott’s two Masters victories with Bubba Watson undoubtedly helps.
“I think the teamwork of player and caddie is so important here,” said Woods, “because there’s so many variables that go on, the lies, the wind, the gust and knowledge of the golf course. … The only level spot there is on the tee boxes.”
“After that, you couldn’t draw up a golf course that has more variable winds and more penalties for a shot that is 1 yard off. A shot that is 1 yard can mean 40, 50 feet on a putt. It’s just understanding that, having that patience and that knowledge. You look at guys who have won back-to-back, have all been pretty patient players.”
Scheffler first started working with Scott in late 2021 and won his first title the next February at the 2022 WM Phoenix Open. Now a six-time winner on the PGA Tour and major champion, Scheffler successfully defended in Phoenix two months ago and won the Players Championship in March.
The pair first met at a Bible study on Tour, and Scott came out of caddying retirement to work for the up-and-comer from Texas.
“I think around this place, a lot of that has to do with his prep work,” said Scheffler of how Scott brings the most value.
“He knows this place really well, having been around it so many times. But that doesn’t mean he gets lazy and he doesn’t do anything. Because this golf course seems to change year-to-year. He is out there doing so much work getting us ready that when it comes time on Thursday and the bell goes off and it’s time to go, I know exactly what he’s looking at.”
After Scheffler won the Players last month, he flew to Augusta on Monday with his father and coach, noting that wearing the green jacket around property was one of the times that winning felt the most real.
On Sunday, he played a round of golf with his sister, Callie Scheffler Paysse, who has caddied for him on numerous occasions.
“She probably has not played in about a year and a half, just crushed it.
said Scheffler. “Had a great time. Stuff like that is memories we’ll have forever.”
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