The opportunity to don the hallowed green jacket is the motivation for all of the golfers at the 2014 Masters, but the $8 million purse is a fairly nice incentive if a place in golf lore isn’t your thing.
Unfortunately for the winner, he doesn’t get to pocket all of that $8 million, but the method for how that money will be divided is outlined below, in addition to a breakdown of three golfers who could walk away with the big prize to stuff into the pockets of that beautiful green jacket.
Most PGA Tour events use the same formula for splitting up the purse, with each place of the leaderboard earning a certain percentage of the total jackpot. The following table breaks down the percentages and share of the purse won by the top 10 spots on the leaderboard.
|Position||Percentage of Purse||Payout|
The Players to Watch
Bubba Watson is always a golfer to watch for his fun-loving ways and antics, but he definitely warrants your attention as the man atop the leaderboard after Days 2 and 3.
Watson has been in fine form and near the top of the standings the entire way after shooting a 69 (three under) on Day 1 and a 68 (four under) on Day 2.
With a three-stroke lead entering Saturday’s action, he had an opportunity to build himself a cushion on Day 3, but a slow start meant he actually gave up ground:
Bubba Watson has bogeyed 3 of first 6 holes today, now at 6-under, leads by 2 strokes at Masters. http://t.co/7B0r7gATX9— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 12, 2014
His trademark power and distance off the tee was there, but it was his short game that let him down.
So Bubba goes 250+ holes without a three-putt.......then does it twice today, including on par-5 13th after getting there in 2.— Brian Wacker (@pgatour_brianw) April 12, 2014
It was an unsettling sight to see Watson so clearly out of sync with his putter, and those struggles eventually affected his long game too with a few off-target shots in the last few holes.
Despite the adversity, he managed to hold on for a share of the lead. Unfortunately, that isn’t a good thing if his track record continues to hold true:
He has to regroup and come back on Day 4 with a renewed sense of focus, but we’ve seen Watson shine on Sunday in Augusta before, so he is certainly a threat to repeat the feat.
Entering Day 3 of the Masters, Jordan Spieth was not a well-known name. After all, he’s new to the golf scene and was enjoying his first trip to Augusta with the big boys. That all changed drastically after Saturday’s play ended thanks to his marvelous play and what he could potentially do on Day 4.
If Spieth can continue his stellar play, he’ll take Tiger Woods’ place in the Augusta record books:
Jordan Spieth finished the day tied with Bubba Watson for the lead at the Masters. Spieth would be the youngest ever to win the Masters.— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 12, 2014
Justin Ray of ESPN puts his age into context, noting that he’ll have to celebrate a hypothetical victory with a juice box:
Jordan Spieth is one off the lead on Saturday at the Masters. He can't legally buy a beer in the United States.— Justin Ray (@JRayESPNGolf) April 12, 2014
What’s been so impressive about Spieth is his poise and maturity on the course. At no point has he looked overwhelmed by the stage or the moment, and his confidence was on display when he talked to Larry Fine of Reuters:
I felt like if I could get my game right and really handle myself mentally, then I could have an opportunity to be in contention. That's where I'm at now with a lot of work to do. This was a big goal of mine this year, to get in contention at a major and the Masters being the one that I dreamt about since I was who knows how old.
Ultimately, if you're playing extremely well and you get the right breaks, then it doesn't matter if it's your first time or your 50th, I think that you can win out here.
With his mental and physical game meshing together perfectly right now, Spieth is less than 24 hours away from making history. There is no reason to think that he’s going to do anything but thrive on Sunday, and we could be watching the start of something special.
Miguel Angel Jimenez
Is there a more startling contrast to Spieth than the 50-year-old Miguel Angel Jimenez? Spieth impresses with his stoic presence on the course, while you can’t help but be entertained by Jimenez and his colorful personality.
But Jimenez thrust himself into contention with a tournament-low round of 66 on Day 3 thanks to a ridiculous back-nine flurry of five birdies in seven holes.
One of the most intriguing characters in sports, Jimenez also emphasized the importance of his laid-back personality to his success, according to Nancy Armour of USA Today:
Yesterday, not being patient and stressing myself, those things, you pay the bill. And then you're the whole day off your pace, off your rhythm. The main thing is to keep that pace, keep that rhythm and keep on your song. That's the main thing, that's the secret to the golf course.
Doesn't matter how you play, you need to keep patience and keep always below the hole. That's the only thing. The rest just happens.
He’s going to be calm and collected regardless of what happens, but he can be the first European to don the green jacket in over a decade if he can keep his stroke and short game in line:
Last time a European won the Masters was 1999. Do you hear that Jonas Blixt, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Lee Westwood, Thomas Bjorn & Justin Rose?— Mike Johnson (@EMichaelGW) April 12, 2014
Entering the last day of the Masters, one thing is clear: Nobody knows what’s going to happen, with the top of the leaderboard exceptionally cramped with 13 players within four strokes of the lead. The men at the top of the standings are also an interesting mix of age, experience and nationality.
We’re going to be treated to another thrilling day of golf as every participant feels the pressure of competing on the game’s biggest stage.