Tulsa—Top-ranked Masters champion Scottie Scheffler doesn’t feel any different in his first major start as a major winner, just hungry to keep his hot streak going at the PGA Championship.
The 25-year-old American has won four times in his past eight starts and will be paired alongside two other reigning major champions when the showdown at Southern Hills starts Thursday.
Scheffler will play the first two rounds alongside reigning US Open champion Jon Rahm and Collin Morikawa, last year’s British Open winner, in a traditional PGA feature threesome.
“I don’t feel any different,” Scheffler said. “When I show up to tournaments, it’s a little bit different. There’s more people hollering at me when I’m playing a practice round. But I kind of stay in my own little bubble.
“I want to win this tournament as bad as any other one. For me not much changes.”
A lot, however, has changed about his place in golf. When the year began, Scheffler was still chasing his first US PGA Tour victory.
He won his first PGA title in February at the Phoenix Open, his second in March at Bay Hill, and his third at the WGC Match Play before capturing the green jacket at Augusta National to claim the world number one ranking.
But, Scheffler notes, the green jacket is in his closet at home this week, and that ultimate ranking, while “a tremendous honor”, won’t gain him a stroke on the PGA field.
“I don’t get any extra shots this week,” he said. “It’s nice to have the ranking, but at the end of the day when I show up at a tournament, I don’t have any advantages over the field.”
Scheffler will try to become the first golfer since Jack Nicklaus to win the Masters and PGA Championship in the same year.
“My game feels like it’s in a good spot,” Scheffler said. “I’ve been on a pretty good run here recently.
“You’ve got to have really faith in all aspects of your game. You can’t really be protecting against anything because you’ve got to put it all on display.”
That said, he hasn’t pondered a “Scheffler Slam” or even a major beyond this week.
“I haven’t thought about that,” he said. “Looking at the British Open or the next tournament is not going to help me play good here.
“I don’t really get too high or low. Living in the moment is usually what works best for me. Staying in my own lane and doing my own thing.”
That said, Scheffler doesn’t know how he will feel during the event, but he says he has his usual sense of hunger to win this week despite his recent glut of success.
“We’ll see how it feels during the round,” Scheffler said. “It took me a while to win the first one and I guess I’ve been on a stretch now.
“But being in contention and winning golf tournaments is the most fun. The more nerves you feel, that’s the more fun stuff for me.”