2024 Masters Preview

AUGUSTA, GEORGIA - APRIL 10: Tony Finau of the United States plays his shot from the third tee during the Par Three Contest prior to the 2024 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 10, 2024 in Augusta, Georgia. | Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The 88th Masters at Augusta National Golf Club begins on Thursday as professional golfers compete to take home one of the sport’s most prestigious honors: the Green Jacket.

The jacket was created when Augusta National opened in 1937 and has been awarded to each tournament winner since 1949, when Sam Snead became the first masters champion to receive the now iconic blazer. The winner gets to take it home for an entire year, but each jacket gets returned to the Champions Locker Room at the next tournament so all the champions can don them together.

“Each time I see it, I think back to what it was like when I first got it,” Dallas native Jordan Spieth told the media during a press conference earlier this week. “… For me, what it represents is it’s the trophy here, so it makes me very proud because it was the tournament that was a dream to win growing up, and it happened.”

The Masters is an invitation-only tournament, and the field consists of the Top 50 golfers in the world, past Masters champions, winners of last year’s majors, and other winners of recent tournaments. This year, 89 golfers will compete for golf immortality.

Reigning Masters champion Jon Rahm returns to defend his crown after beating Brooks Koepka and Phil Mickelson by four strokes last year. Rahm is seeking to become the first repeat Masters champion since Tiger Woods in 2001 and 2002.

“It’s so hard to put that experience into words,” Rahm said of his victory. “I had heard from a few other players — a few Masters champions and a few that had won majors other than the Masters — that [it was] something special, something different when you win one. I can confirm it’s absolutely true. … All the tradition, all the stories, [and] all the shots make it so special.”

Other past Masters champions in the field include Mickelson (2004, 2006, 2010), Spieth (2015), Woods (1997, 2001,2002, 2005, 2019), Dallas’ Scottie Scheffler (2022), Sergio Garcia (2017), Dustin Johnson (2020), Patrick Reed (2018), Hideki Matsuyama (2021), Charl Schwartzel (2011), and Bubba Watson (2012 and 2014), among others.

Scheffler, the current world No.1 and favorite to win the 2024 Masters, and Spieth are among the six Texan golfers in the tournament. Five (Scheffler, Spieth, Will Zalatoris, Taylor Moore, and Bryson DeChambeau) reside in the DFW area. Reed, the sixth Texan, is from The Woodlands.

The six Texans have three Masters titles, and ten Texan golfers combined to win the Masters an overall 15 times.

Will they add another this year?

The first group will tee off at 7 a.m. CT on Thursday.

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