Tiger Woods had the world in his hands. It seemed as if he had it all. He was a modern-day legend, an Iconic figure in sports, and a role model to all children especially African Americans.
And then, his life began to spiral downward after his father’s death in 2006. His marriage falls apart after revelations of extra-marital affairs, and his back problems would prove to be burdensome for his future career in Golf.
How did It happen? Where did it begin? And where is he now? We will look at the Rise and Fall of Tiger Woods.
Tiger Woods was a prodigy from the beginning of his life. Born in 1975, as Eldrick T. Wood, Tiger was nicknamed by his father, Earl’s, good friend and fellow Vietnam soldier, Vuong Dang Phong.
When Tiger would see his father putting and hitting golf balls around, he would often mimic what he saw and started instantly becoming a golfer of his own.
At the age of 5, Tiger appeared in Golf Digest magazine and on the ABC show, That’s Incredible. Displaying his raw and unique talents as a young golfer, Tiger quickly gained the attention of the golf community.
By the time Tiger was 15 years old, he had already become a wrecking ball in the amateur golf world. Amassing a U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, Tiger had become the youngest to accomplish such a feat. For two years, he would successfully defend his title in the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, becoming the first ever to win the title more than once.
Tiger was voted Pac-10 Player of the Year for the U.S Amateur Championship. He was named to the first all NCAA team.
PGA Major Tournament:
In 1995, Tiger began competing in the PGA major tournament. He still continued his reigning success as an amateur until 1996, in August, he turns a pro.
Tiger was becoming a force as a pro from early on, and had already accumulated mass endorsement deal worth $40 million from Nike and another $20 from Titlesist. He would be the leading money winner in 1997 with a cool $2.6 million in earnings. He wins his first major championship, the Master, by an incredible 12 strokes. That year he was voted PGA player of the year, and is ranked number one player as a pro.
Fast forward to 1999, Tiger records an astounding 16 top-ten finishes in 21 of his PGA Tour starts. He’s voted the PGA player of the year again, as he slides past Sergio Garcia for a PGA major title victory.
The Youngest Player:
In 2000, Tiger becomes the youngest player ever to complete the career Grand Slam after winning a British Open title. He wins a third consecutive major title, and earns his second consecutive PGA Championship.
At 25 years of age, Tiger can’t go wrong, and he wins a Masters Tournament, becoming the first ever golfer to simultaneously win all four majors.
In 2002, Tiger repeats winning a Masters Tournament, and becomes the youngest golfer in history to win 7 PGA majors.
In 2003, Tiger had a remarkable year in earning. He became the first golfer to earn as much as $40 million.
Tiger ties the knot in 2004, to Swedish model, Elin Nordegren.
In 2006, Tiger loses his father, Earl Woods, after a bout with cancer. Earl passed away at the age of 74, leaving the 30 year old missing an important piece of his success in golf.
Many speculate, that Tiger’s demise hit the fan after Tiger’s father passed. Tiger would go on to be successful that year, snagging his third British Open, winning a Buick Open, and racking up a 12th major tournament win.
The next year he would go on to win his 13th major title and wins his fourth PGA championship.
In 2008, Tiger announces that he will need reconstructive surgery on his ACL on his left knee. Tiger takes the year off to heal.
In 2009, Tiger is in a car accident outside his home. He hits a fire hydrant and a tree while he backs out of his driveway. Tabloid speculates that this has something to do with rocky marriage.
Numerous females go to the press in regards to having affairs with Tiger Woods. And in 2010, Tiger and Elin officially divorce one another.
Four years later, after being named 2013 PGA Tour Players of the Year for his 11th time, Tiger’s career as a golfer is set back by a back injury. That year in March, Tiger has surgery in hopes of correcting his back.
Tiger’s embarrassing confession to sex addiction back in 2009 pales in comparison, when in 2017, Tiger was found asleep behind in 2015 Mercedes. The famous dashboard camera incident, would later haunt the former golf great, as many speculated whether Tiger’s life was out of control and beyond self-help.
Later on, it was determined that Tiger Wood’s had no alcohol in his system, but rather a combination of Vicodin and another prescribed medication that zonked him out.
Arguable, there will never be another epitomizing athlete like Tiger Woods. What he did for Golf alone, merits him a legendary status. His rise of prominence and greatness will be cherished by Tiger adoring fans. However, it is fall from grace, his failed marriage, his addiction to sex and possibly painkillers that could doom the polarizing figure that couldn’t do any wrong back in his prime. Is it too late? Hardly, Tiger still has time to resurface and revive his career as the best ever in Golf.