It’s that time of year again. It’s April and that means Masters and green jackets. The Masters is the biggest tournament in professional golf, and it attracts sports fans from all parts of the world. Played in beautiful Augusta, Georgia, it is a sports tradition. So, I figured it was the perfect PGA tournament to discuss the golfers who will be representing Ohio. I say Ohio and not Cleveland because there aren’t any golfers from Cleveland in this year’s tournament, but there are some from Ohio. Golf is controlled mostly by people from Southern states due to the need for warm weather, but Ohio is still able to sneak in there.
Ohio is being represented by Jack Nicklaus and Jason Day. I know what you’re thinking, Nicklaus retired years ago and was prominent in the 60s and 70s, but that doesn’t stop him from having representation at the Masters. Along with Gary Player, Nicklaus will be starting off the tournaments as Honorary Starters. As one of the best to do it, it is always fun to see Nicklaus back out there. Day has been a top PGA golfer for a few years now and comes into the tournament as the 14th ranked golfer in the world. He will be teeing off for round 1 with the third latest tee time at 1:38 pm and then at 10:42 a.m. for round 2. His grouping will be one of the most popular ones at the Masters as he will be with Bryson DeChambeau (ranked 6th in the world) and Dustin Johnson (ranked 2nd in the world).
Nicklaus is by far considered one of the best golfers of all time. He holds the title of most Masters wins with six green jackets. The next closest person has four green jackets. Nicklaus’ Masters’ wins have come in 1963, 1965, 1966, 1972, 1975 and 1986. That’s a remarkable run. Nicklaus was born in Columbus, Ohio and went to Ohio State to play golf. He is one of the most famous alumni from OSU and it’s well-deserved. He has been an active advocate of the PGA and will be a common appearance at the Masters this weekend, on top of his honorary starting.
Day is from Australia and still has a home there, but whenever he is in the United States, his home is in Westerville, Ohio, not too far from Columbus. He has continuously been a fan of Cleveland sports, especially the Cavaliers. In 2015, he was sitting courtside at a Cavs game when LeBron fell into the stands and unfortunately injured Day’s wife. She had to be taken away on a stretcher. Day also has a strong relationship with JR Smith, including having him as his caddy during the practice round at the Akron Bridgestone Invitational in 2017. In Day’s career, he has won 12 PGA Tour tournaments, including the major, the PGA Championship in 2015. When it comes to the Masters, his best performance was in 2011 where he finished tied for 2nd place. Going into this year’s Masters, he has 30/1 odds to win the tournament, putting him at the 14th best odds to win.
The Masters is always a great time of the year for sports and it should be a great tournament this year. I hope Day will be able to represent Ohio well and Nicklaus is always doing a great job of doing so. Either way, it is nice to know that two people will be showing out for Ohio at the Masters, especially when most of the United States golfers only represent a small percentage of the country.