Baylor alum Jimmy Walker wins 2016 PGA Championship
Former Baylor golfer Jimmy Walker has ranked among the top 15 or so players on the PGA Tour for three years running, but until last week, winning one of golf’s four majors — the Masters, U.S. Open, Open Championship, and PGA Championship — had eluded him.
Not anymore. Walker made national headlines Sunday as he won the PGA Championship in dramatic fashion, edging the event’s defending champion by one stroke.
The Texan was at his best under pressure on the final day, holding off a late charge in the last two holes by last year’s PGA Championship winner, Jason Day, to finish three strokes under par and claim the one-stroke victory. It was a thrilling conclusion to what, thanks to rain in the host city of Springfield, N.J., was the longest 36-hole final in PGA Championship play in over 60 years.
This was not the first time Walker has hoisted a trophy at the end of a PGA Tour event; two years ago, he won three of his first eight tournaments to burgeon his reputation as a pro, and he’s claimed wins in events like the Sony Open and Valero Texas Open (held near his home in San Antonio). But Sunday’s victory was his first major championship. What does it mean for Walker? According to golf.com’s Michael Bamberger, it enshrines his name alongside the game’s most storied pros:
“Years from now … golf fans will look back at the list of winners of the PGA Championship and see the name Jimmy Walker right alongside some of the most sparkly names in the history of the game. Congratulations, Mr. Walker. You won yourself a major, the 2016 PGA Championship. You sir, are now a part of the lore.”
At Baylor, Walker was an All-American golfer in 2001 before turning pro. He joined the tour in 2004, but injuries kept his career from taking off for several years. He claimed the first of his six PGA tour victories in 2013 before winning his biggest prize of all this week.
Sic ’em, Jimmy!
You might also like:
* Women’s golf finishes 2nd at 2015 NCAA Championships (May 2015)
* Baylor alum to represent U.S. on golf’s biggest stage (Sept. 2014)
* Baylor club golf wins national championship (May 2014)