Zach Johnson returns to Colonial golf course after last year's mistake

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by JOE TRAHAN

Bio | Email | Follow: @joetrahan

WFAA Sports

Posted on February 12, 2013 at 2:07 PM

Updated Tuesday, Feb 12 at 2:06 PM

FORT WORTH -- Back at Colonial Country Club for the first time since last year's tournament, two-time Crown Plaza Invitational champion Zach Johnson actually forgot what he forgot.

"I had to go outside and do a couple pictures," he said. "I looked at the 18th green, and went, 'Oh yeah, that's right, I forgot about that.'"

Last year, Johnson forgot to correctly replace his golf ball before hitting his final putt. It cost him two strokes, but he still won the event by one shot, and took with him a valuable lesson.

"What I learned there was I got a little emotional and I got ahead of myself, and totally had a mental lapse,” Johnson said.

That was about the only lapse that week. Johnson then showed off his precise iron play and tidy short game which has made him a Tour mainstay and a major champion.

Johnson has had a 15-year career on the PGA Tour and is a nine-time tour winner, earning more than $27 million.

He's also etched his name twice on Colonial's Wall of Champions, joining other multiple winners like Ben Hogan, Lee Trevino, and Phil Mickelson.

Johnson admits he wasn't the best golfer on his high school or college team, and credits his support system for the responsibility he feels to maximize his God-given ability. He said his secret to success really isn't one.

"Hard work," he said, "I grew up in a hard-work, blue-collar sort of area in Iowa and that's just what I know how to do. That and always trying to get better. I'm never satisfied with being where I'm at. I'm not content with it, and I want to keep trying to work."

No wonder he's thrived in Hogan's shadow, where the golf course demands an old-school mentality.

"You just get a real fond appreciation the way the game's evolved and the way the game used to be played; the way these courses are laid out," Johnson said. "The old cliché -- they don't make 'em like they used to. And this is one of 'em."

E-mail jtrahan@wfaa.com

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