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Is Cameron Young the next Scottie Scheffler?

Cameron Young Cameron Young - The Canadian Press

They say it takes a village to raise a child. 

And the same could be said about winning professional golf tournaments. 

Just ask Scottie Scheffler. 

Scheffler was one of the better pure ball-strikers on the PGA Tour from the moment he arrived in 2019. 

His rookie campaign resulted in seven top-10s, and he finished inside the top 25 in more than half of the 23 events he played in. 

Scheffler entered his second season on Tour with higher expectations. I mean, how could he not, after being named Rookie of the Year and finishing fifth in the FedEx Cup standings? 

Scheffler’s play in his second season was on level with his performance as a rookie, and the American quickly became a player in the scenario that begged the question, “When is Scottie finally going to get a win?” 

From January 2020 up until the 2021 RSM Classic (Nov. 14), Scheffler was the 10th-best player on Tour in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green. 

He averaged 1.01 SG: T2G over those 191 rounds and ranked among the game's elite, placing him in the same conversation as such major champions as Jon Rahm, Rory McIlroy, Hideki Matsuyama and Collin Morikawa. 

And yet, not only did Scheffler not win any majors during that time period, he still hadn’t won a tournament since the Nationwide Children's Hospital Championship in 2019 on the Korn Ferry Tour. 

Scheffler was one of the best players in the world, and yet he couldn’t find the winner's circle.

And then Ted Scott showed up. 

No longer the caddie for two-time Masters winner and former World No.2 Bubba Watson, Scott proved to be the missing piece in Scheffler’s puzzle. 

Within five events, Scheffler got the monkey off his back, starting with a win at the WM Phoenix Open where he defeated Patrick Cantlay in a playoff.

And then the floodgates opened. 

Scheffler picked up two wins over his next four starts and headed to Augusta National looking to keep his stellar play rolling. 

Mission accomplished. 

The American won The Masters by three strokes, which would’ve been higher if he didn’t comically four-putt the 72nd hole of the tournament with a five-shot lead in his back pocket. 

It was the perfect bow on top of an incredible run of golf. 

So how have we made it nearly 400 words in,and not yet talked about the guy this article is really about? 

Well, context is important. And I like to tell stories with my words. 

Cameron Young is one of the game’s upcoming stars. He has the 2022 Rookie of the Year trophy to prove it. 

Since joining the PGA Tour, Young ranks 10th in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green. 

His 1.03 SG: T2G per round over his 126 rounds have him grouped with the game’s best: Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Collin Morikawa… and Scottie Scheffler.

And yet, the wins haven’t shown up. 

Young hasn’t won a golf tournament since winning back-to-back Korn Ferry Tour Events in May 2021. 

But if you’ve watched the PGA Tour since Young arrived in September of that year, he’s been hard to miss.

Toss away the extremely recognizable swing with a drastic pause at the top of his backswing. 

The American has contended, racking up 10 Top 10s, just one shy of Scheffler’s total before changing caddies. 

Two of those have come in majors, with his best finish coming at the 2022 Open Championship when he fell one shot shy of forcing a playoff as Cameron Smith made history on the back nine at St. Andrews, winning the Open before deciding to "Grow the Game" and make the jump to LIV Golf. 

Enter Paul Tesori.  

Tesori was the caddie for Webb Simpson for 12 years. 

Their time together saw Simpson win a major championship, a Players Championship and reach No. 4 on the World Golf Rankings. 

It didn’t take long for Tesori to end up on someone’s bag as Simpson included in his statement, announcing the split and that his former caddie of 12 years was joining Cameron Young effective immediately. 

A top-tier caddie has jumped on the bag of a young (no pun intended) and upcoming player who is one of the best ball-strikers on Tour and has yet to find the winner’s circle. 

Sounds awfully familiar. 

Now, I’m not saying that Young is about to go on a historically good run of golf, but I’m not, not saying it. 

Young’s chances of winning a tournament this season greatly improved this week, in my mind.

And I want to use Scheffler’s resume to see if we can find where that first win will come for Young. 

In 2020, Scheffler tied for 15th at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. 

The American put on a ball-striking clinic that week, gaining 11.46 shots on the field tee to green. 

However, his putter let him down that week at Bay Hill, losing over four shots to the field on the greens. 

Scheffler returned to the tournament in 2022, once again hitting it well and gaining more than eight shots tee to green. But this time the putter showed up, and he collected the second win of his career. 

The Masters victory came after tying for 18th in 2021, a tournament he gained 9.02 shots tee to green, but lost 4.19 putting. 

In 2022, the tee-to-green play was even better (14.56), and he gained nearly three strokes, putting en route to a very boring Sunday at the Masters. 

Looking at Young’s 2022 season, one tournament in particular stands out. 

After missing the cut at the Masters, Young headed to the RBC Heritage and rebounded with a tie for third. He gained slightly over 10 shots tee to green, but was a loser with the putter. 

The RBC Heritage is an elevated event this season, Young will be there once again, and it’s the perfect opportunity to grab a win in a loaded field, not unlike Scheffler’s first win coming at the WM Pheonix Open. 

As for the majors, let’s throw a circle around the PGA Championship in May at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, N.Y. 

Young is the son of David Young, the Head Golf Professional at Sleepy Hollow Country Club in Scarborough, N.Y. 

“Without that at Sleepy Hollow, I don't start playing at four years old or earlier.” Young said at the PGA Championship in 2022. “I don't have the access that I did growing up. I started playing in PGA junior events when I was nine, eight, something like that."

Young went on to tie for third at Southern Hills, again missing a playoff by just one shot as Justin Thomas took down Will Zalatoris to claim his second major. 

This year, with another year under his belt and a great caddie on the bag, I like his chances to add his first major title to his resume in his home state of New York.