2019 DSGO: Scott McCarron & His Jenny are Lighting Up the PGA TOUR Champions!

1I first met Scott McCarron and his wife, then girlfriend, Jenny I was doing yardages for Scott, the on-course reporter for the Golf Channel early coverage at the time, on the par-5 15th hole. There are three things I remember vividly about that week—the record 179,022 in attendance on Saturday—interviewing LPGA Founder and Legend Marilyn Smith in her home—and how much fun Jenny & Scott were having in life. They literally lit up the fairway between golf shots!

Now six years later Scott is lighting up the PGA TOUR Champions having won 11 times, one more than Jack Nicklaus, including one Major, winning the Bridgestone Senior PLAYERS Championship one month ago. Of course, Jack played a limited schedule (84 events) and 8 of his 10 wins were Majors! McCarron’s PGA TOUR Champions career, four years into it, is extremely impressive!

I had the privileged of asking Scott a couple of questions in his media center interview (see full transcript below) and his answers were quite revealing! Forest Gump might have had his Jenny in Movie Land but Scott has the real thing in the Golf World for sure. Suffice it to say his answer to why he has been so successful is ‘Jenny, Jenny, Jenny’ and a lot of hard work, sacrifice, and determination!

My follow-up question utilized information from Wikipedia—that he did not transition well from college to the professional ranks… Lesson Learned; never use information from Wikipedia to interview a professional athlete!

8Actually it triggered another interesting and revealing line of McCarron response… The truth is always revealing! He flat out quit playing golf and was living life with full gusto on all fronts until disaster washed away the family business. He went to his father and suggested that they rebuild the family apparel business together. That they did just that with Scott playing some social golf to sell hats and shirts.

Scott is likely the only person in his 20s, albeit a competitive amateur golfer at the time, to go to a PGA TOUR Champions event and be inspired to pursue a professional golf career! The long putter took his putting game to a higher level as he won three times in a 21-year career on the PGA TOUR.

As fate would have it I was walking along and heard Scott’s voice booming out from a Security Mutual corporate event. Still inspired from our earlier encounter I went in and again had the privilege to ask him another question after listening for a while.

Jenny was there watching as he once again attributed his success to her and a new outlook on life. I heard him say that he was grateful to be out here competing against the same guys that he competed with on the PGA TOUR. He spoke of pure competition—that competition is competition no matter where it is, when it is, or against whom it is. Competition is competition! That was basically his response to my question asking him to compare his success on the two tours.

What I realized was that yes, the players are all seemingly the same, competing on the same En Joie Golf Course, in the 2019 Dick’s Sporting Goods Open as they were in the 1972 B.C. Open but Scott McCarron was not, without a doubt, the same person, especially from the inside-out. Jenny and Scott have created something special, something successful, and certainly something inspiration. Others may want to hit the pause button for a moment and go within to find the peace and serenity, the clear and quiet mind to hit the winning golf shots that Scott is hitting!

Jenny and Scott hit the pause button and took the last month off after his Major victory. My thought is that Scott, the 2017 DSGO Champion, will hit the Go-button and follow Bart Bryant as the second consecutive two-time winner of the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open… on the PGA TOUR Champions and in life extraordinaire with Jenny…

Transcript Credits: PGA TOUR Champions & Tee-Scripts.com

Q. Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary: What do you attribute your success to on the Champions Tour? I mean, you really lit it up out here.

SCOTT McCARRON: Well, I think there’s a couple things. I felt like when I got to the end of my career on the PGA TOUR, I had a couple injuries and life gets in the way of golf sometimes, and taking that time off really made me appreciate how much I love playing golf for a living.

So when I was coming back to play on the Champions Tour, one, I started working with a new teacher, E.A. Tischler, and that helped out a lot. But just getting back in shape, getting back with some renewed energy.

And I was dating my wife, Jenny, at the time. Wanting to show her I could still play a little bit. And she was pushing me, because there was a time in that 48 to 50 when I was doing some announcing, I was working for Golf Channel, doing a little CBS, NBC, signed a contract with FOX, that I was considering which direction do I want to go. Do I want to give it a shot again in playing golf or do I want to go into the announcing. And Jenny really was pushing me to go back into golf, she knew how much I loved that.

So that was a big push for me to get back in. Okay, if we’re going to do it, let’s really do it. A lot of guys come out here and have had great careers and have tons of money and Hall of Fame and this is kind of a just go out and have some fun. For me it was, okay, if I’m going to do this, I want to be the best out here and I want to practice and I want to play and I want to eat right and work out and do everything I can to be the best player that I can be and be one of the best players out here.

So I feel like I’ve got a lot of prove, I guess. Mostly just to myself, not anybody else. No one else really cares what I do except my wife, but I’m trying to prove it to myself. So I’m setting high goals and I feel if I stay in shape, I can have a good 10-, 12-, 14-year career out here on the Champions Tour.

And the other thing is, you know, when you’re 25 to 28, 35, you’re not really thinking of the end, that you’re going to have to stop playing golf at some time. Once you turn 50, you think, oh, okay, there is an end in sight. I know that and it’s not that far away, so I want to put everything I can into it and get the most out of it and enjoy it and have fun.

I think that’s been one of the biggest things for me is having Jenny travel with me. We have so much fun together on the road that she’s made it a lot more fun than just traveling out here by myself and going through the drudge a little bit. I think she’s been a big help.

Q. Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary: You mentioned the 20s, this is a quick follow-up. Wikipedia has you not transitioning well from college to the professional ranks. Looking back, I mean–

SCOTT McCARRON: I don’t know about not transitioning well. I quit golf for four years. I thought that was a great transition. Yeah, I quit. So what’s the question?

Q. Andy’s Golf & Travel Diary: Just lessons learned from that?

SCOTT McCARRON: You know, lessons learned from that would be when I was getting out of college, my buddies were all turning pro, going to South Africa and playing, Asia. I just didn’t want to do that. I didn’t feel I was good enough. I felt my golf career per se, you know, my lifelong dream to play on the PGA TOUR was over, so I quit. I literally just quit.

I actually just found a picture the other day. I took all my trophies from all my junior golf days, and there were hundreds of them, whatever, and at the time my dad and I started a golf apparel company, so we had this big packing table that we packed shirts on. And I lined them all up, took a picture and I threw them all away, every single one of them. And now I wish I would have kept a few of them, but I literally, at that point the dream was over and I quit.

I didn’t play hardly at all. I only played golf to sell shirts, and I was running some charity events in Sacramento because I had the golf background, but I was doing it to sell 144 shirts and hats and those type of things.

So I played some scramble events 10 times a year for three years and that’s about it. Didn’t play golf hardly at all. Skied. I was flying, got my pilot’s license. Skydiving, kayaking. Started a city flag football team, was playing on two softball teams, playing city basketball, tennis team, traveling, playing racquetball tournaments, open racquetball tournaments.

So I was doing a lot of other things and not playing any golf and it wasn’t until a Champions Tour event at my home course, the Raley’s Senior Gold Rush that I saw four or five guys putting with the long putter. I went home that night, made a long putter, started putting with it.

The next day I called in sick to work, went out and practiced a little bit and I said, I like this. You know, I’m going to have some fun with this. I started playing and I signed up for some amateur tournaments just for fun and started winning them and enjoying it. And almost won at 25 the U.S. Mid Amateur. I think I made the quarterfinals at the U.S. Mid Am and that was it. I came back and told my parents, I said, “I’m done working, I’m going to go play golf for a living,” and that’s what kind of got me back into it.

Obviously a different transition than most guys. I don’t know how many guys on the PGA TOUR played the Mid Am, but again, being away from it as long as I was again gave me an appreciation to when I got back into golf, how much I really did love it.

(Andy Reistetter; Facebook Post with 1 Pic; 8-16-19)