Ben Crenshaw, born on Jan. 11, 1952, started to play golf at the young of age of six after his father took him to play at the Austin Country Club. He played collegiate golf while attending the University of Texas before turning pro in 1973 and immediately became a favorite especially among female golf fans because of his natural charm and movie-start looks.
Known for his putting skills and short bursts of temper (he was given the monicker “Gentle Ben” as a joke), Crenshaw holds the record for being the second player to win the first event of his career at the Texas Open.
He won his first major title when he won the Masters Championship in 1984. Despite battling Graves disease in the mid- 1980s he managed to garner more titles, finishing 19th on the PGA tour and bagging his second Masters title in 1995, which was also made memorable because a week earlier he had served as a pallbearer at the funeral of friend and mentor Harvey Penick. It was Penick who taught Crenshaw how to putt with smooth effortless strokes on the green. Crenshaw did not record a single 3 stroke putt during the course of the championship.
He was also captain of the victorious Ryder Cup team in 1999, which bagged the championship title after Justin Leonard sealed in the victory with his wining long putt.
Other victories outside the PGA include his victory in the World Cup of Golf in 1988. After ending his career in competitive golf, Crenshaw focused on golf course design. Earlier in the mid-80’s he had started the Coore and Crenshaw golf course design firm with partner Bill Coore.