AUGUSTA, GA — Bryson DeChambeau arrived at the Masters tournament as the reigning U.S. Open champion just two years ago, winning New York’s Winged Foot Golf Club by six strokes with a stunning 350-yard drive. , won that title. He was the new face of golf and committed to shaping the sport in his image. I took a swing.
A physics major at Southern Methodist University, DeChambeau said he would use scientific research to build stronger swings and reshape the modern golfer’s paradigm. One day, 400-yard drives will become the norm and many traditional courses will become obsolete. He predicted that his impressive length off the tee would make the timeless Augusta National Golf Club play like a par 67 instead of a par 72 on the scorecard.
His brash and daring style energized golf, and the enthusiastic, cheering gallery that followed him overwhelmed the gallery of every other golfer (Tiger Woods was injured). Demographics were also skewed noticeably younger, with game stewards welcoming the demographic change.
do not stop. There is absolutely no way to stop it,” DeChambeau said.
On Wednesday, in the final practice session before his fifth consecutive Masters, DeChambeau walked the eighth fairway alone. Behind him it was his caddy that kept him 50 yards. He had no one to play with. There didn’t seem to be a single fan accompanying him. Twenty-one people witnessed his arrival as he approached the approximately 1,000-seat grandstand overlooking his eighth green. No one was applauding.
People looking down on him didn’t seem to know who he was, but DeChambeau might be able to understand because he’s now a shirt size or two smaller, maybe 30 pounds lighter, maybe more. No. Late last year, he admitted he had lost 20 pounds in just one month by avoiding his previous protein shakes and binge diets.
Whatever the cause, there are multiple theories in the golf community, but over the past two years, DeChambeau has become a shell of his former self in more ways than one. At the 2021 Masters, he finished tied for his 46th place with 75 or more in his third round. In 2022, he missed the cut in the second round with an 8 over par 80. So far Augusta has played like a par 67. At the 2021 U.S. Open, he led with his nine holes remaining, and collapsed as he finished the tournament by hitting par in eight overs.
He tied for eighth at last year’s British Open, but his best finish at a major championship since his runaway victory at the 2020 US Open was a tie for 26th.
Before joining the LIV Golf Circuit last June, he missed the cut in four of the five events on the PGA Tour. Since then, he has never finished higher than 10th at any LIV competition. Wrist surgery contributed to his afflictions, as did bouts of dizziness that were later corrected with sinus surgery. In November, his father John, who taught his son to play golf, died at the age of 63.
But earlier this week, a grinning DeChambeau arrived at Augusta National and professed to be healthier than he has been in years. DeChambeau believes he was eating foods that cause inflammation and injury, so he advised anyone trying to get strong to see a doctor for a blood test to measure food sensitivities.
The ups and downs of his golf game, he said, taught him that “the only thing consistent in life is inconsistency.” This is the kind of weird thing DeChambeau has been saying since 2015 when he established himself as a rising star in the sport as NCAA Division I individual champion and National Amateur champion.
DeChambeau took no remorse for his comments about cutting Augusta National to a par 67 due to the length of his tee shot and hitting an 8-over par in the final Masters round.
“I don’t think I regret anything,” he said, adding: are you kidding me “
he continued. I learn from every mistake. ”
He obviously tempered his expectations. When asked if he could win this week, he replied:
As DeChambeau finished his practice round after nine holes, he silently left the final hole despite hundreds of fans surrounding the green. He stopped at one point when a few fans asked for his autograph. One of the hes in the group is her 16-year-old Matthew Fehr, who lives in the Alamo, Calif., and wanted DeChambeau to sign the cover of his golf magazine starting in March 2021.
Fehr collects autographs for athletes and had DeChambeau sign three times, all at the height of his popularity with golfers.
Asked to rate what he thinks has gone wrong with DeChambeau over the past few years, Fer said: But I don’t think what he was doing—exercise and diet—was sustainable. ”