Jordan Spieth kicked off 2016 with a dominant eight-shot victory at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions, which drew him even with Tiger Woods on the list of PGA Tour titles before turning 23. The 22-year-old superstar just happened to pass the 14-time major champ on our list of golf's top earners a few days later -- and that didn't even factor in a lucrative endorsement from Coca-Cola that was also announced this week.
There is no doubt Spieth, the current World No. 1, is the game's current king, but could he wind up being better than the man who once dominated golf in unprecedented ways? Probably not, but it's at least worth a discussion. As mentioned, Spieth has another six months to surpass Woods' seven-victory total before 23 and he's already ahead of his majors pace thanks to his Masters-U.S. Open double in 2015. Also keep in mind that Spieth and Woods are the only two golfers to ever win the U.S. Junior more than once.
Now keep in mind that Woods won that event three times and also added three U.S. Amateur titles in the three years that followed. And aside from his staggering career totals, that age-related stat is a little misleading. Spieth needed twice as many PGA Tour starts (77 to Woods' 38) to get to seven victories. Yes, Spieth's meteoric rise has prompted this debate, but for now, Woods' accomplishments seem pretty safe. In any event, here are five other things to talk about with your buddies on the golf course this weekend:
1. Sony Open: No, Jordan Spieth is not in the field this week, but it's still worth watching -- especially with a chance to see history. Vijay Singh shot an opening 63 to grab a share of the first-round lead. At nearly 52 years and 11 months, Singh would be the oldest winner in PGA Tour history if he were to win at Waialae this weekend (Sam Snead was 52 years, 10 months at the 1965 Greensboro Open). To put this in perspective, Singh is more than three DECADES older than Spieth.
2. NFL Playoffs: Last week produced two of the wildest (and most brutal losses) you'll ever see, and now this weekend, we have some really juicy games to look forward to. Just look at these quarterback match-ups (Minus Alex Smith vs. Tom Brady): Russell Wilson vs. Cam Newton? Aaron Rodgers vs. Carson Palmer? Ben Roethlisberger vs. Peyton Manning? Yes, please.
3. The Golden Globes: The big winners on the TV side, "Mr. Robot" and "Mozart In The Jungle" are two shows that I'm not familiar with. Make that two shows I wasn't familiar with. "Mr. Robot" is on USA On Demand and from what I've seen so far, it's worth the hype. Now I'm trying to figure out if "Mozart In The Jungle" is worth plunking down the extra money for Amazon Prime. And if you're not into talking about either of those shows, just talk about Ricky Gervais' performance. When he hosts the Golden Globes, it might be the one time you're glad you're not a celebrity:
4. Rickie Fowler's high-tops and joggers: Would you wear these things?
How about these?
More importantly, are you OK with seeing them on the course? Yet another important golf conversation to have with your foursome, particularly if you haven't played with someone since the holidays.
5. Powerball winners: We knew there were three winning tickets sold, but didn't know who any of the winners were until Friday, when a Tennessee couple came forward. Here's a direct passage from the Reuters wire story:
"Lisa and John Robinson of Munford, Tennessee, now must present the ticket to Tennessee lottery officials for verification in order to claim their one-third share of the largest lottery prize ever offered in North America. They planned to do that immediately after their appearance in the "Today" show's New York studio."
Wait, wait, wait. These two risked traveling to New York with a lottery ticket worth more than half a BILLION dollars before turning in said lottery ticket? Wow. Regardless, we can all still discuss what we would have done with the money -- and of course, talk about what lucky bastards these people are.