Why Jordan Spieth says his golf struggles are a whole lot like yours
Jordan Spieth, entering the final round of this week’s Genesis Invitational, was tied for sixth after shooting rounds of 68, 68 and 73. It follows a tie for third and rounds of 65, 67, 71 and 70 at last week’s AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-AM, and a tie for fourth and rounds of 67, 67, 61 and 72 at the Waste Management Phoenix Open two weeks ago.
All of which follows a well-documented rise — three major championships, 10 other career wins, world No. 1. And an equally well-documented fall — no wins since 2017, a drop down the world rankings, various swing changes.
Good and bad. And teases of good again. You, everyday golfer, know how Spieth feels. And Spieth said he knows how you, everyday golfer, feel, too.
“It’s kind of the first time in my life where I’ve had a significant dip in success,” Spieth said this week. “It had kind of been a nice uptick every single year. So just kind of learning how to deal with that and doing it — and having to do it in such a public way was very difficult — can sometimes present even more challenges. But at the same time, the idea is to get to the bottom of it, turn it around, make progress each day and recognize that’s the past and I can use it as having some scar tissue and use it to my advantage going forward.
“But ultimately I’m just in the same search that everybody else is that steps on the first tee, which is feeling really in control of the golf ball and shooting low scores. Everybody’s search for that is a different path, and I’m living mine right now.”
It’s also a search, he says, that keeps him coming back for more. Spieth’s hit that one shot. Now he’d like to hit it every hole. Every time out. Sound familiar again, everyday golfer? Why else are you teeing it up day after day, taking lessons and buying clubs? That one round could be tomorrow.
“I feel some moments where I kind of hit the shot and I have that kind of step of confidence that I just, it’s kind of been missing,” Spieth said. “I’m gaining — I think I can use the word momentum into just gaining confidence — gaining confidence in what I’m working on.
“And that kind of belief has me going to bed at night wanting to go to work tomorrow and wanting to go out there and trust what I’m doing. Whether we pull it off or not, just to make progress. It gets me really excited about playing golf and for me that makes me happy. I mean, it’s nice to be going to bed wanting to do what you love to do and you get to go do it. Can’t take that for granted and I’m glad to be on this side of it right now.”