Pre-Tournament Interview with Scottie Scheffler

THE MODERATOR: Scottie, welcome back. You finished runner-up last year, but runner-up last week as well. Form is obviously good coming in here. You must feel pretty happy with that.

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: Yeah, form feels pretty good. I took two good days of rest yesterday and Monday. Majors typically wear me out pretty good, so it was nice kind of getting home and just getting to relax a little bit.

As far as this week goes, the golf course seems like it's in really good shape again. Greens are rolling nice. Looking forward to another week here at Colonial.

Q. I guess between last year's finish and just last week, how hungry are you to win this one, also being in your home area?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: I'm typically pretty hungry to win whatever event it is. I show up expecting to come here and play well and do my best. Yeah, I'm hoping for a good finish this week, but I try not to look too far ahead. I'm just getting ready for tomorrow morning, going really late this week. Get a little practice in this afternoon and then go home and try to get some sleep.

Q. Regarding the game itself, what was the biggest positive takeaway you had during your time at Oak Hill this past week?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: I felt like at the Byron I didn't swing it as well as I hoped to. I started getting comfortable with my swing, and I really started feeling the ball come off my putter really nice.

I felt like I struggled for a few tournaments in a row with the putter, which was a bit frustrating. Masters was a frustrating week with the flat stick, and Hilton Head was more of the same. It was good, I feel like I'm starting to trend in that direction. When my putter gets hot, I typically have some pretty good finishes. So I'm hoping it will heat up this week.

Q. A big story this past weekend and this week now too is Michael Block obviously. What are your thoughts what he was able to do and what it means growing the game to have a PGA pro playing so well last week and now in this event and RBC coming up too?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: It was awesome. We played behind him last week on Sunday and listened to the hole-in-one. It was pretty fun. It's definitely great for the game of golf. The PGA professionals really do the hard work for us.

I grew up at a golf club, and my coach is a PGA pro. He's a proud member of the PGA for probably 50 years now, maybe 45. He's pretty old. I grew up around those guys, and they introduced me to the game and taught me how to play.

Any time you see a PGA pro have some success is really special. We're definitely happy for him and well deserved to get into these two events after his performance last week.

Q. How does it feel to be the World's No. 1 and back at your hometown course?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: I don't really think much about rankings and stuff like that. It's nice being back here at home and being able to play an event. Like I said, majors typically wear me down pretty good, especially when you're in contention on the weekend.

So to be able to sleep in my own bed this week and able to just be at home the last two days was definitely important in terms of rest. Then playing in front of a home crowd as the week goes on is always really fun.

Q. Does that make this tournament extra special, being able to play in the area where you're from?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: Yeah, I grew up coming to this tournament. Being able to come here and play the golf course and compete is definitely very special for me. I've grown up dreaming of being out here, and now being on the other side where I'm inside the ropes and trying to do my best and compete is definitely very special.

Q. Do you have any specific memories of coming to this tournament as a kid? Anything that stands out to you, like a special moment you remember?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: I don't remember specific things, but I remember showing up here with my dad and just coming out and watching. My dad loved to watch golf. When I grew up, any time I could get a chance to go to the PGA TOUR, it was pretty cool. So come out here on practice round days and watch guys.

I typically liked the practice round days more just because you could get closer to guys and I liked just watching. It wasn't as much about the atmosphere. It was more just me watching and learning from those guys. So just being able to come here, and all the pros were always pretty nice to me, which is always a nice bonus.

Q. Are there any pros that you saw that you've been able to play with now from the Colonial?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: So not specifically from this event, but I grew up at Royal Oaks where there used to be a number of pros that took from Randy Smith. Being out here, Ryan Palmer is one of those guys I grew up watching, and now we're out here competing.

We actually got paired two weeks ago at the Byron on Saturday, which was pretty fun. I grew up with various guys that competed here, so to kind of be walking in their footsteps is very special.

Q. Scottie, you mentioned that these major weeks kind of wear you down. What's the biggest challenge of playing a week right after a major or maybe some of the benefits or perks of continuing to play?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: I think the majors definitely kind of sharpen your focus just because the golf course is so challenging and you have to be on for all 18 holes. Any time you lose focus out there, you tend to get punished for it pretty good. So that's kind of where the wear down factor comes from, just from being at such a high level of focus.

That's the type of energy I'm trying to bring to more of the regular TOUR events, just that intensity for all four days, not just when you're in contention or not just when I'm playing really well. Just bringing that intensity to every shot, whether it's the first tee shot tomorrow morning or a shot in the playoff, like it was last year. So bringing that same intensity, and I think the majors is a good way to train my brain to do that same sort of thing.

Q. This is the last year of this format before they do the big redo with Gil Hanse here at this course. Have you looked at the changes coming to Colonial in years to come?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: No. I know a lot of guys love the golf course the way it is right now, so I'm interested to see the changes that they make. This is one of the guys' favorite stops on TOUR. I'm interested to see what it's like.

I hope it doesn't change too much because they've got a pretty special place here. Gil Hanse is a very talented golf course redesigner and restorer. I don't know what he calls himself these days. Is he a designer or a restorer?

Q. Either/or.

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: Either/or, okay, good. I'm sure he'll do a good job.

Q. What does it say about Texas golf and the success that Texas golfers have had two favorites in this tournament are both from Texas and you both have had so much success on the PGA TOUR in the last decade?

SCOTTIE SCHEFFLER: If you're going to look for the last decade, you're going to look at all of Jordan's results. I've only been here for a few years.

Jordan, he was another guy I looked up to growing up. He was always a few years ahead of me and crushing it from a young age. So he was always a guy I looked up to and was able to bounce things off of when I was thinking about turning pro, when I turned pro. He's always been a guy that's given me great advice, and he's such a talented player.

I think growing up here in Texas you learn how to play all different kinds of shots. I feel like Jordan and I are pretty similar in the way we like to play shots. We're not really -- I would say that neither of us really have perfect golf swings, to say the least. So he's just another guy that I've learned from.

Like I said, growing up here, you learn how to play just all different kinds of shots and learn how to play the game versus trying to play golf swing.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
132954-1-1182 2023-05-24 16:59:00 GMT

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