The Loop

The young and the aging

May 21, 2010

IRVING, Texas -- Jordan Spieth is 16, too young to know how hard the game is. Vijay Singh is 47 and just now learning it.

Spieth, the reigning U.S. Junior Amateur champion, had rounds of 68 and 69 at the HP Byron Nelson Championship to become the sixth youngest in the history of the PGA Tour to make the cut. A high school junior, Spieth outplayed Singh, a Hall of Famer, by 11 shots.

Singh, who had rounds of 73 and 75, is in the midst of the worst stretch of his career. He hasn't won since September of 2008. He's missed the cut in four of his last five tournaments. He's fallen out of the top 50 in the World Ranking for the first time since 1992. In March, he withdrew from the Transitions Championship with a bad back. Whether it's still an issue is unknown; he declined to talk after his round on Friday.

Spieth, meanwhile, demonstrated the enthusiasm would might expect from a kid making his debut in a PGA Tour debut and talent that belied his youth.

"I'm kind of in shock right now," said the Dallas native, who accordingly has had a substantial gallery with him. "Looking back I'm extremely pleased with how the week has gone so far, and hopefully I can make a run at the top of the leaderboard the next two days, but we'll see."

Spieth was playing with PGA Tour rookie Blake Adams, who shot 61 and is the co-leader heading into the weekend.

"He did really, really well," Adams said. "Yesterday, he obviously had some nerves on the first hole and had said that was the most nervous he's ever been over a golf ball. I told him to relax, breathe, the first shot is over, just have fun from here.

"He's a great kid. He's 16 playing in front of his home crowd. There is so much expectation and pressure and he played solid. He's a nice kid on top of it."

-- John Strege