Scottie Scheffler is on a Texas-sized roll.
He’s won four of his last six singles starts on the PGA Tour, a dominant stretch of victories from Phoenix to Orlando to Austin to Augusta that ballooned his bankroll and shot him to the top of the Official World Golf Ranking.
The biggest of the four wins was his three-shot win in the Masters which came with a green jacket, which he has enthusiastically put to use as he wore the coveted garment when he threw out the first pitch at a Texas Rangers game and dropped the puck at a Dallas Stars replied.
Yet all the recent success – remember he was winless on the PGA Tour on the morning of February 13th – hasn’t change him one iota.
“He’s just the same guy,” Xander Schauffele said. “He’s very playful, he practices really hard, you’re always going to see Scottie out there chipping or putting pretty late in the day. So I’m not surprised that he’s been winning so much and playing great golf. I imagine him being very comfortable, which is a dangerous place for the current world No. 1.”
Former Walker Cup teammate and good friend Will Zalatoris played in an event at Preston Trail Golf Club in Dallas with Scheffler and other pros two weeks ago.
Guess who won?
“(I shot) 66 and he comes in with 63 and it’s like, ‘Good grief, man, like having an off day,’” Zalatoris said. “He’s setting the bar pretty high right now and obviously he’s kind of the guy to chase for all of us.
“But what he’s doing is borderline Tigeresque. It’s pretty cool to see.”
And now Dallas resident Scheffler, 25, is eager to play a home game in one of his favorite tournaments of the year this week – the AT&T Byron Nelson at TPC Craig Ranch near Dallas – and in the 104th PGA Championship next week at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Oklahoma, one of his favorite golf courses in the world.
“Nice to be sleeping in my own bed this week,” Scheffler said Wednesday at TPC Craig Ranch. “Obviously love the Byron Nelson Championship and look up to Mr. Nelson. I had the pleasure of meeting him a handful of times when I was a kid. Byron Nelson’s always been very gracious with people and he was gracious with me and it was a pleasure to meet him and definitely have some good memories.
“I had the honor of playing in this tournament in high school, so I got a lot of good memories playing this event and I’m looking forward to this week.”
In 2014, Scheffler, the reigning US Junior Amateur champion, made his PGA Tour debut in the AT&T Byron Nelson at age 17. With his sister, Callie, on the bag, he made the cut, had a hole-in-one in the third round and tied for 22nd.
“We had a ton of fun. We had like half of our high school out there watching, so it was a good time for sure,” said Scheffler, who teamed with Ryan Palmer to tie for 18th three weeks ago in the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, his last start. “We have great memories of this event. I’m sad she’s not going to be able to be here this week, she she’s going to have a baby here in about three weeks so she’s not allowed to travel, but she will be here in spirit.
Scheffler has good memories of Southern Hills, too, where he won the 2015 Big 12 Championship while competing for the University of Texas, finished in a tie for fifth in 2018, and tied for 21st in the 2014 Trans-Mississippi Championship.
“I just think it’s a really good test,” said Scheffler, who shot 64 in a practice round at Southern Hills a week ago. “I hadn’t played the new golf course yet. But it looked pretty similar to what it did before a lot of sight lines off the tee were still very familiar to me. It was really nice to go up there and see the golf course again.”
But Scheffler isn’t looking ahead. His mind about him is on at AT & T Byron Nelson.
“The golf course is in great shape this year. I have a bit of experience around this place but having a golf course where you know it’s going to be in good shape and looks like the weather’s going to be really good this week so it should be a nice test and a fun week,” he said. “Should see a good amount of birdies around this track, which is definitely fun for us.
“We definitely have some friends and family. We got a few people staying at our house this week which is fun. So it’s going to be a great week.”