By: Will Purbaugh
For the Yellow Jacket
On a weekend where College Gameday made its first-ever trip to Augusta National Golf Club, Dustin Johnson should go tell everyone who proclaimed Bryson DeChambeau the best golfer in the world, “Not So Fast My Friend.” Johnson won the 84th Masters by 5 shots over Cameron Smith and Sungjae Im.
Johnson turned Augusta National into his playground this week, becoming the first man in the illustrious history of the tournament to reach 20 under par at any point in the tournament. His final total of 268 also broke the tournament’s scoring record for 72 holes, beating the previous mark held by Tiger Woods (1997) and Jordan Spieth (2015), by 2 strokes.
Johnson’s victory is his 2nd triumph in a major championship, following his win in the 2016 U.S Open at Oakmont Country Club. It is also the first time in five tries at the majors that he has converted a 54-hole lead into a win, the most attempts it has taken a golfer to do so in major championship history.
While Johnson was phenomenal this week, Cameron Smith deserves a tip of the cap. Smith finished all four rounds in the ’60s, a feat that had never been accomplished in Masters history. Also, give credit to Sungjae Im, who had the best finish by a Masters rookie since Jordan Spieth finished 2nd in 2014.
The defending champion Tiger Woods started his week with 68, but never found that same mojo again. Woods finished tied for 38th at 1 under par, including a 10 on the famed Par 3 12th, the hole that was so crucial in his remarkable victory some 19 months ago.
For all the hype that Bryson DeChambeau was given heading into the week, he disappointed this week. DeChambeau finished the week tied for 34th, struggling to find the consistency he had in the U.S Open. His week will be remembered most for his complaints of feeling “dizzy” after his second round, which saw him struggle to just make the 36-hole cut right on the number.
While Dustin Johnson broke many records this week, one record was broken that Dustin will not be able to break until at least the 2048 Masters. Two-time Masters champion Bernhard Langer became the oldest man to cut the Masters at 63 years, 2 months, and 18 days, breaking the previous record set by Tommy Aaron in 2000. Langer even beat his much younger playing partner on Sunday, Bryson DeChambeau.
For all the great golf that was played this week, the thing that will be remembered in the years to come about this year’s Masters was all the outside circumstances surrounding the event. With no patrons in attendance due to COVID-19, the traditional roars that come with a Masters week were sorely missed by all who watched on television.
Also missed this week was the feeling of anticipation that the Masters brings golfers each year. The Masters represents the beginning of spring for most fans, and while Augusta looked beautiful in November it will be nice to return to some normalcy for next year’s Masters, which will be held on its normal beginning of April date.
However, no matter when the Masters is held, when all is said and done, whenever Dustin Johnson shows up at Augusta he will be able to slip his green jacket on and be known as a Masters Champion.