DALLAS — When Jordan Spieth won the John Deere Classic on Sunday, it did wonders for a young golfer who was just trying to earn his PGA Tour card.
"I owe one hundred percent of it to my family, family and friends back home. Honestly, I don't even know what to say right now," Spieth said after becoming the first teenager in 82 years to win a PGA event.
Five years ago, Spieth was just learning the game. Cameron McCormick, the head professional at Brook Hollow Golf Club, started giving him lessons at the age of 12.
"The scary part is that there is more to come," McCormick said when talking about his 14-year-old student. "You can see when you watch him play golf. He's still under-realized in terms of potential."
Now that potential is starting to come into focus.
Sharing in his latest accomplishment are teachers and administrators at Dallas Jesuit, where Spieth is a graduate.
"He's the real deal," said school president Michael Earsing. "Everybody always asks me is he really as nice as everybody thinks he is when you first meet him, and the answer is: He's nicer."
Athletic director Steve Koch said he knew that Spieth had the mental strength to endure a five-hole playoff like he did on Sunday.
"Yeah, he was like that. You knew he was going to be good at whatever he did," Koch said.
Speith's brother Steven was supposed to be coaching at Jesuit's on-campus summer basketball camp, but when his brother won on Sunday and was invited to the British Open, his plans changed, too.
"I get a text from Steven that said, 'Hey, I might not be at camp tomorrow because there's a chance I might be on a plane to Scotland,' and I said, 'What does have to do with you?'" recalled basketball coach Chris Hill.
In 2008, Spieth was headed to the Junior British Open.
Now — five years later — he's headed to play in his second major in Scotland.