Nearly three decades after John Daly burst onto the golf scene by going from tournament alternate to PGA Championship major winner in 1991, Daly’s son, John Daly II, nearly got his own junior tournament title at the same course.
Daly II, 16, finished tied for second place at the inaugural Dye Junior Golf Invitational at Crooked Stick Golf Club in Carmel, Indiana this week.
“I think a lot of guys have re-watched the 1991 PGA tournament,” Daly II told the Indianapolis Star on Wednesday. “I watched it every night before the tournament. [Watching him] walk down the 18th with all of the fans everywhere was pretty cool. He started as the ninth alternate and didn’t expect to play. For him to win, it was a ridiculous story. He loves it.”
He’s not alone. Daly was 25 when he made the field of the ’91 PGA Championship tournament due to a handful of withdrawals. He had missed 11 cuts in 23 starts as a pro golfer prior to one of the more remarkable runs in golf history after driving through the night just to get to the tournament on time.
Daly II’s run at Crooked Stick wasn’t quite as memorable, but he finished four-over-par at the two-day, 54-hole event, which included 33 of the top high school-age golfers in the country.
He led the tournament after the first 27 holes, which prompted the elder Daly, now 54, to tweet on Tuesday: “Go get it son! Let everyone know I said hello…been a few years. #1991”
For the most part, Daly II said his father doesn’t get overly involved with his golf game.
“If I ask him something he’ll answer, but he waits for me to come to him with what I need help with,” said Daly II, who lives in Clearwater, Florida and attends Bishops Gate Golf Academy.
Daly II also wore red, white and blue American flag shorts on Wednesday, emulating his father’s style, which made him a fan favorite during his career, which also included a British Open title in 1995.
“I played great,” Daly II said. “It would have been cool to win, but I still have time. Just a couple bad three-putts both days, but other than that, I played great.”