News & Tours
The Family Business
The only thing harder than making it in professional golf is trying to make it with a famous name. Our rundown of relatives of well-known players who've attempted to carve our careers of their own
February 09, 2014
The son of Butch Baird, a two-time winner on both the PGA and Champions Tours, Briny Baird has the distinction of earning more money on the PGA Tour, $13,183,237, than any player without a victory. Which is not to say Baird hasn't come painfully close. He's been a runner-up six times, including last year at the McGladrey Classic, when he lost to Chris Kirk by a shot. Baird's relationship with his father is said to be distant, with the two falling out after Butch's divorce from Briny's mother in 1992.
Arnold Palmer's grandson won a Florida state championship in high school and played college golf at Clemson before skipping his senior season to turn pro. He has yet to earn full-time status on the PGA Tour -- he's made seven cuts in 21 career events -- and had a miserable 2013 season on the Web.com Tour, earning just $27,156 in 19 events. But Saunders was able to keep his Web.com Tour card thanks to a clutch performance at last December's Web.com qualifying school, where he finished 11th.
It's hard enough to be the son of one of the game's legendary players. Even harder when that player goes on to be television golf's most respected analyst. But Andy Miller handled it well enough. After an All-American career at BYU, he won a Web.com event in 2002 and made the cut in the U.S. Open that same year. After earning his PGA Tour card, Andy abruptly left golf in January 2004, not because he couldn't cut it, but to embark on a church mission to Mexico. Although he hasn't played on tour since, he continues to dabble in competition, making it through U.S. Open local qualifying last year.
While Brett's father, Paul, was an elite amateur, his uncle Dana has enjoyed a lucrative career as a pro, winning 11 times and earning $14,854,166 on the Champions Tour. With on-again, off-again status on the PGA Tour, Brett has still carved out a respectable career as well, with five runner-up finishes and more than $11 million in earnings.
The nephew of the legendary Sam Snead was, like his uncle, a remarkable all-around athlete. He spent four years in baseball with the Washington Senators organization before turning his attention to pro golf in 1964. He wouldn't regret the decision. Snead won eight times on the PGA Tour and four more times on the Champions Tour.
The son of Jay Haas has followed a very similar career path as his dad, becoming an All-American and a national player of the year at Wake Forest before winning on the PGA Tour. Even Bill's first win as a pro came in 2010 at the Bob Hope Classic, an event his father won two decades earlier. Bill is on track to become the first modern offspring to pass his father's career achievements. The 31-year-old's five wins are more than half of Jay's total, and he also captured the 2011 FedEx Cup.
The niece of Tiger Woods attracted attention as a high school star before playing collegiately at Wake Forest. There, she made headlines with a seven-shot win at the 2011 ACC Championship. Cheyenne turned pro after graduating in 2012 and played full-time on the Ladies European Tour in 2013. She only finished 78th on the tour's money list, but had a breakthrough win at the 2014 Australian Ladies Masters.
"Young" Tom Morris
The son of "Old" Tom Morris dominated the early world of professional golf like his dad. Young Tom won four Open Championships before his tragic death at 24. When he held off his dad at Prestwick in 1868, he became the youngest player (17) to win a major championship -- a record that still stands. Old Tom also won four Open Championships, and both father and son are in the World Golf Hall of Fame.
The son of Bob Tway is a rookie on the PGA Tour. Kevin is most known for winning the 2005 U.S. Junior Amateur before starring at his father's alma mater, Oklahoma State. He won the 2013 Albertsons Boise Open on the Web.com Tour and finished the season fifth on the money list to earn his PGA Tour card. Bob won eight times on the PGA Tour, most notably at the 1986 PGA Championship at Inverness Club, when he holed a bunker shot on the final hole of regulation to defeat Greg Norman.
After qualifying and making the cut at the 1979 British Open at age 17 (the first of three majors he would play in), Wayne, the second son of Gary's six children, finished in the top 25 just three times in 40 PGA and Web.com Tour events between 1982 and 1991. Gary won nine majors and is one of only five players to have completed the modern career Grand Slam.
Javier may share Seve's same proclivity for erratic driving, but the 24-year-old seems to be heading down an entirely different road than his father, a five-time major champion. Despite winning the Amateur Madrid Open in 2012, Javier remains hard at work towards a law degree in Madrid.
Bob and David Duval made history on March 28, 1999, when they became the first father-son duo to win on the Champions and PGA Tours on the same day. Although that was Bob's sole Champions Tour victory, David would ascend to No. 1 in the World Ranking and win the 2001 British Open, the last of his 13 PGA Tour victories.
Al Geiberger's 11-win, one major, first-59-in-PGA-Tour-history career surely cast a long shadow, but Brent, his adopted son, coped well. He won twice on the PGA Tour -- once in 1999 and once more in 2004. His last PGA Tour start was in 2009, when he withdrew from the Wyndham Championship.
Dave Stockton Jr.
Stockton the younger won twice on the Nationwide Tour in 1993 before graduating to the PGA Tour and playing nine full seasons. His best finish was T-2 at the 1995 Canon Greater Hartford Open, an event his father won in 1974 among his 10 PGA Tour titles. At the end of his playing days, Dave Jr. joined dad (and younger brother Ron) as an instructor specializing in working with tour pros on their putting.
Gary and Jack Nicklaus II
So many up-and-comers have been labeled "the next Nicklaus," but Jack II and Gary literally had to live with this expectation being the sons of the 18-time major champion. Jack II, famously on his father's bag at the 1986 Masters, played around the world as a pro before joining the family's golf-course design business in the late 1980s. Gary (pictured) earned a PGA Tour card on his eighth try at Q school in 1999, and played three seasons, his best finish a playoff loss to Phil Mickelson at the rain-shortened BellSouth Classic in 2000. Subsequently, he regained his amateur status and qualified for the 2012 U.S. Amateur.
Guy hadn't yet turned 4 when his father Julius won his second major title, the 1968 PGA Championship, to become the oldest-ever major winner (48). Guy's journeyman career has included stops on various tours around the world, with victories on the Canadian and Nationwide Tours to go with his lone PGA Tour triumph, the 1996 Greater Vancouver Open. He has a Web.com Tour card for 2014 and is expected to play the circuit in preparation for the Champions Tour when he turns 50 in September.
There are chips off the old block, and then there is Craig and Kevin Stadler. From their matching stocky builds to their frighteningly similar swings, there's not mistaking their family ties. Upon Kevin's victory at last month's Waste Management Phoenix Open, after 239 previous starts, the two have another thing in common: winning a PGA Tour title. Kevin's triumph means an Augusta invite is in the offing this April, where he'll join 1982 Masters champ Craig as the first father-son duo to play in the major.