Who is the youngest winner in PGA Tour history?
PGA Tour

Who is the youngest winner in PGA Tour history?

A picture of golfer Jordan Spieth in 2017 A picture of golfer Jordan Spieth

In modern professional golf, winners are getting younger and younger as upstart golfers turn professional with increasing amounts of tournament experience, including winning huge titles before they graduate college -- if they even get there.

However, it's still incredibly rare for a professional golfer to win on a major tour in their teens. That's why the list of the youngest winners in PGA Tour history has a considerable gap between the most recent teenage winner and the one before him.

In 2015, Jordan Spieth became the youngest winner in modern PGA Tour history, taking the 2015 John Deere Classic at the ripe, old age of 19 years, 11 months, 18 days. Winning at TPC Deere Run, Spieth earned full PGA Tour status and started a career toward becoming a multi-time major winner.

When Spieth won the John Deere Classic, he became the first teenage winner of a PGA Tour-recognized event in 82 years. Before Spieth had won in Silvis, Ill., the last teenager to win on the PGA Tour was Ralph Guldahl in the 1931 Santa Monica Open. Since the PGA Tour as we know it was formed in the 1960s, this win was retroactively credited to Guldahl as a PGA Tour win.

The youngest winner in PGA Tour history is also the recipient of a retroactive win. Charles Kocsis was 18 years, 6 months and 9 days old when he won the 1931 Michigan Open.

The tour changed the mark in recent memory. Previously the mark belonged to Harry Cooper, who won the 1923 Galveston Open in Texas at the age of 19 years, 4 days. It's a record that's likely to stand for decades to come, too, as more professional golfers cut their teeth in the collegiate ranks and pursue several years of college before turning pro.

Becoming the youngest winner in PGA Tour history isn't something most golfers now pursue. They're looking to be fully prepared to be a professional when they become part of the paid set. Further, the PGA Tour has mandated the best path to the PGA Tour is playing a full season on the Korn Ferry Tour. That will mean it's increasingly unlikely a young pro will even be in a position to try to win in their teens on the PGA Tour.

Youngest winners in PGA Tour history

  1. 18 years, 6 months, 9 days -- Charles Kocsis, 1931 Michigan Open
  2. 19 years, 4 days -- Harry Cooper, 1923 Galveston Open
  3. 19 years, 8 months, 3 days -- Ralph Guldahl, 1931 Santa Monica Open
  4. 19 years, 10 months, 14 days -- Johnny McDermott, 1911 U.S. Open
  5. 19 years, 11 months, 18 days -- Jordan Spieth, 2015 John Deere Classic

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Ryan Ballengee

Ryan Ballengee is founder and editor of Golf News Net. He has been writing and broadcasting about golf for nearly 20 years. Ballengee lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his family. He is currently a +2.6 USGA handicap, and he has covered dozens of major championships and professional golf tournaments. He likes writing about golf and making it more accessible by answering the complex questions fans have about the pro game or who want to understand how to play golf better.

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