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Inspiration | Sports
Ben Crenshaw's respect and love for the game of golf has captivated the world. From his first win on tour to his triumph as captain of the United States Ryder Cup Team, Ben Crenshaw not only inspired people, but is also considered one of the most popular and talented players on the PGA Tour.
Ben Crenshaw won his first tournament in the fourth grade with a score of 96. At fifteen, he won the state junior tournament, and in 1968 he took his first national title at the Jaycees Junior Championship. Throughout college Ben Crenshaw's sole concentration was on golf, however, he hesitated to join the professional tour before finishing his studies because he wanted a college degree in case his golfing skills failed him. After clinching his third NCAA title in 1973, and winning ten other championships that year, Ben Crenshaw could no longer resist the temptation to turn pro. In August of 1973, he officially qualified as a PGA professional.
Few players in the history of golf have made a more auspicious debut than Ben Crenshaw. In just six weeks on the tour, he captured $79,749 in prize money, including winning the very first PGA Tour event he entered, the San Antonio-Texas Open.
Ben Crenshaw's seemingly effortless game and easy-going manner soon garnered him the respect of the other pros and over the years earned him the nickname "Gentle Ben." In 1991, Ben Crenshaw received the Bob Jones Award, the highest honor the United States Golf Association bestows upon its members. The award was especially meaningful for Ben Crenshaw since Bobby Jones had always been his idol and model in the game.
Ben Crenshaw captured 19 PGA tour wins and four international titles. Included in his wins are two memorable Masters championships in 1984 and 1995. Ben Crenshaw will always be remembered for his emotional victory in the 1995 Masters Tournament. With the passing of his teacher and close friend, Harvey Penick, during Masters week, Ben Crenshaw returned to Augusta and somehow won his second Masters, securing his place in golf history. In late 1997, Ben Crenshaw was honored by the PGA of America by being named Captain of the 1999 American Ryder Cup Team. Ben Crenshaw and the American team went on to an emotional victory in the 1999 Ryder Cup.
While Ben Crenshaw's career certainly reached pinnacles with his 1995 Masters win and the 1999 Ryder Cup matches, he looks forward to the next few years with great anticipation. In January 2002 he became eligible for the senior tour.
In recent years Ben Crenshaw has spent considerable time away from the PGA Tour developing his golf course architecture business. Along with his partner, Bill Coore, the firm of Coore & Crenshaw has done restoration work on some of the finest courses in the country, as well as having built championship courses throughout the United States. Ben Crenshaw made the transition to entrepreneur, serving as the president of Crenshaw Golf, a Dallas firm in the golf course management field.
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