Bubba Watson Profile
|Born||May 11, 1978|
|Birthplace||Bagdad, Florida, United States|
Lanky left-hander Bubba Watson has belied his reputation as a joker and a maverick to twice win the Masters at Augusta National.
Left-handed Gerry Lester 'Bubba' Watson Jr is a double Masters winner and among the longest hitters on the PGA Tour who has five times topped the PGA Tour's Driving Distance rankings for the season.
He has banked over $45million in prize money since turning professional in 2002, winning 12 tournaments including his dual Major triumphs at Augusta National in 2012 and 2014.
Watson had to wait until 2010 for his first tournament victory on the PGA Tour, breaking his duck by defeating Corey Pavin and Scott Verplank in a three-way playoff to win the Travelers Championship.
He has represented the United States in the Ryder Cup on four occasions to date (2010, 2012, 2014 and 2018) and also played in the Presidents Cup twice (2011 and 2015).
Watson has a unique sense of style and even brought out his own clothing range called 'Bubba Golf'.
Watson played golf for Milton High School, which famously also produced fellow PGA Tour members Heath Slocum and Boo Weekley.
After graduating from high school, Watson enrolled at Faulkner State Community College where he became a junior college All-American.
Watson then transferred to the University of Georgia to play for the defending NCAA champions, the Bulldogs. In his junior year, he aided them in their winning efforts in the Southeastern Conference.
Watson would only compete in one tournament in his senior year, with the Bulldogs team laden with All-Americans. Sitting out in his senior year motivated Watson to make it on the PGA Tour and also allowed him to improve on his own.
Watson joined the paid ranks in 2002, signing up for the Nationwide Tour, where he would hone his craft until 2005.
He came agonizingly close to his first professional tournament victory in 2004 at the Lake Erie Charity Classic, when he lost on the fourth hole of a playoff to Kevin Stadler.
That same year he made his first Major Championship appearance at the US Open, but missed the cut.
In 2005 he finished 21st on the Nationwide Tour's money list, thereby qualifying for the PGA Tour.
After an uneventful start to his professional career, Watson announced his arrival with a strong showing at the 2007 US Open.
The left-hander was just one shot off the lead at the halfway mark but slipped back and finished in a tie for fifth.
His breakthrough on the PGA Tour win came at a time when his father was battling throat cancer and he would deliver an emotional tribute to his parents after claiming the 2010 Travelers Championship.
The Masters double
In taking his winding path to golf's upper echelons, Watson acquired the playing philosophy that enabled him to become a multiple Major Champion.
Willing to attack the course in a manner unlike more conservative journeymen, Watson was beginning to come into his own in 2012, as evidenced by three top-five finishes in the first seven events of the year.
He mounted a late charge at Augusta, starting the final round three strokes behind the leader Peter Hanson.
Rather than inhibit him, a bogey at the 12th inspired a thrilling finish as he birdied four consecutive holes to force a playoff against Louis Oosthuizen.
At the second extra hole, the 10th, Watson pulled out an incredible recovery after sending his tee-shot deep into the woods.
He hooked a wedge from the bushes to secure par, a first Green Jacket and a jump to number four in the world rankings.
He struggled in the immediate aftermath of his win and wouldn't really find his touch again until 2014, when he finally earned his fifth PGA Tour win in the Northern Trust Open at Riviera Country Club.
He then claimed a second Masters triumph with an 8-under-par score of 280 the same year, fighting off the challenge of a young Jordan Spieth to ensure that he would be the 17th man to win more than one Green Jacket.
World Golf Championship success
After that second Masters victory, Watson again suffered a dip in form, although he did win the WGC-HSBC Champions in November 2014 and the Travelers Championship for a second time in 2015.
He enjoyed something of a revival in 2018, recording third victories at both the Genesis Open and the Travelers Championship.
He also won the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play that year, beating Kevin Kisner in the final.
Watson hasn't won on the PGA Tour since June 2018 and this has seen him tumble down the rankings - second remains the highest rankings position he has ever reached.
Bubba Watson's personal life
Watson grew up on the Emerald Coast and enjoyed a close-knit family life. He was nicknamed Bubba by his father in honor of former football player Bubba Smith.
He met his wife Angela while at university in Georgia, being drawn to her as she matched him in height. Born in Canada, Angela played on the university basketball team. She was diagnosed with an enlarged pituitary gland in 2009.
The couple have adopted two children and still live in Florida, with Governor Rick Scott having Watson's name added to the official list of great Floridians too.
A devout Christian who is heavily involved in philanthropic efforts, Watson also tried his hand at singing in a boy band called 'Golf Boys'.
Bubba Watson's net worth
Watson has an estimated net worth of $30million, with much of his money coming from PGA Tour winnings.
In 2013 he purchased Tiger Woods' Isleworth mansion for $2.2million.
Watson enjoys an equipment sponsorship deal with Ping, who have produced several customized 'Bubba' clubs. He also has marketing relationships with several companies including commercial giants Oakley, EA Sports and eBay.
The Golf Boys single "Oh Oh Oh" and accompanying music video was funded by one of Watson's commercial partners, Farmers Insurance Group. The group have promised to donate $1,000 to charity for every 100,000 views the video gets on YouTube.
Bubba Watson News
- Feb 16, 2021