When Phil arrived in Augusta for the Masters in early April, he did and said all the right things. He followed an opening-round 72 with a pair of 69s to grab the lead heading into Sunday. But Phil wasn't going to waltz to his first major title. Ernie Els, who began the final round trailing by two strokes, shot a a 67 to seize control of the tournament. With three bogeys on the front nine, Phil appeared to be pulling another choke job.
This time, however, Lefty kept his composure. He launched a memorable charge on the back nine, making birdies on five of the last seven holes. He sunk a 20-foot putt on the 18th green to secure the victory.
Arnold Palmer, 2004 Sports Illustrated
Phil's reaction told the story. He leaped high in the air—at least by his standards—hugged his caddie Jim "Bones" MacKay and flashed a smile as big as the monkey he had just removed from his back. His celebration was equal parts relief and jubilation.
“Since I was a kid and first picked up my golf club, I've been living my dream,” Phil Mickelson said Monday night in his World Golf Hall of Fame induction speech.
It’s easy to boil down Mickelson’s career to numbers. PGA Tour victories, 42. Majors, four. Ryder Cups, eight. Presidents Cups, nine. Plus, 19 years, six continents and who knows how many golf courses.
But life is not a numerical list. For Mickelson, like most of us, his memories are filled with personal snapshots of friends and family.
Mickelson will officially have his mug placed on the venerable wall at the hall, testament to his 40 PGA Tour victories and four major championships, numbers that do not remotely encompass all of his contributions to the game.
He won a major with two drivers in the bag, then blew another with zero drivers in his club quiver. He won a tournament with five wedges in his bag. He hit defining shots that would astound, and more than a few that drowned. He was often smarter than the rest, and almost as often, too stubborn for his own survival.
Back in 2003, Phil Mickelson -- then known as majorless Phil Mickelson -- had a tryout with the Toledo Mud Hens to be a pitcher for the minor league baseball club. Sure, Phil wasn't going to go all Michael Jordan on us (even though he does have the gambling problem, so there's that), but Phil has always been interested in baseball, even warming up before rounds by playing catch with his caddie, Jim MacKay.
One of the highest paid golf players, Phil owns a number of dear assets which include his $6 million Rancho Santa Fe estate and a $60 million jet Gulfstream. Phil is married to Amy McBride and the couple has three children. An active philanthropist, Phil founded the “Phil and Amy Mickelson Foundation” in association with his wife Amy and also stands for support of a number of other charities
Besides playing golf, Phil Mickelson also likes to fly planes. He's a licensed pilot and has his own plane.
Phil graduated from the University of San Diego High School in 1988 and attended Arizona State University on a full golf scholarship. His collegiate golf career turned out to be nothing short of spectacular. During his four years at ASU, he won three individual NCAA Championships (1990-1992) and three consecutive Haskin Awards (1990-1992) as an outstanding collegiate golfer. During his four years as a Sun Devil, Phil earned first-team All-American honors and became only the second collegiate golfer to do so.
In 1990, Phil became the first left-handed golfer to win the US Amateur trophy. While still a student and amateur golfer at ASU, Phil Mickelson did win his first PGA Tour tournament, the Northern Telecom Open, in 1991 by a stroke from Tom Purtzer.
Phil began hitting balls long before he reached kindergarten. Though he was a natural right-hander, the youngster learned to swing a golf club as a lefty. In 1972, six months shy of his second birthday, Phil started mimicking his father as he worked on his swing. Phil Sr. fed his oldest son's interest by cutting down a ladies’ wood for him to use. As a toddler, Phil insisted on standing face-to-face with his dad when they practiced. Since Phil Sr. was a righty, Phil did everything in mirror opposite as a left-hander.
Phil was absolutely crazy about golf. As a three-year-old, he ran away from home when he wasn't allowed to join his father for a weekend outing. A year later, Phil completed his first 18-hole round, and then sobbed uncontrollably because the day was over.
Phil Mickelson began golfing as a child, running away from home to the golf course at age 3. His career began in earnest when he was at Arizona State, where he won three NCAA individual championships and became only the second collegiate golfer to earn 1st team All-American honors all four years. He turned professional when he turned 22 and is now one of the highest paid players.
In 2004 Ford created an advertising campaign around the tagline, "What will Phil do next?" It got a lot of play in the media and eventually throughout the golf world when Phil Mickelson would hit a shot only he could see or make a decision bystanders couldn't comprehend or show up at Augusta using two drivers to win the Masters or five wedges in a win at Colonial.