Golf

Jordan Spieth in Hilton Head: 'Positives and negatives' to spotlight for Masters champ (+video)

Jordan Spieth, reacts with a smile during an interview at the media tent during the RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing on April 15, 2015, at Harbour Town Golf Links in Sea Pines on Hilton Head Island S.C.
Jordan Spieth, reacts with a smile during an interview at the media tent during the RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing on April 15, 2015, at Harbour Town Golf Links in Sea Pines on Hilton Head Island S.C. The (Hilton Head) Island Packet

Jordan Spieth didn’t tell anyone where he was eating Monday in New York City during his media blitz.

But paparazzi found him at his chosen restaurant anyway, a little taste of what life could be like after his record-setting Masters victory Sunday.

“I understand that there are positives and negatives to a spotlight,” Spieth said Wednesday at Harbour Town Golf Links. “And we’re going to try to take advantage of the positives and just push aside the negatives or those that are just looking for something to say.”

Spieth arrived late Tuesday at the Hilton Head Island home where he is staying with friend and fellow competitor Justin Thomas this week, the end of a two-day whirlwind following his resounding Masters victory Sunday.

A soft-spoken Spieth met with the media for about 20 minutes Wednesday, answering many of the questions he faced during the roughly 25 interviews in as many hours he faced in New York City. The 21-year-old is the second-youngest Masters champion and matched Tiger Woods’ 18-under-par 270 total for lowest ever at the year’s first major.

He sounded surprised at some of the headlines that have come out in recent days.

A video showed a 14-year-old Spieth talking about winning the Masters. A letter surfaced that he wrote as a high school junior, thanking a family for the scholarship fund that made his attendance possible and reiterating his desire to win the Masters.

He said the reality that he had accomplished his childhood goal set in walking up the 18th hole Sunday at Augusta National Golf Club.

“And I realized that this is actually going to be cooler than I ever could have dreamt it being, just the feeling that I had then,” Spieth said.

The interview Wednesday was his first without the green jacket, which he said was a member’s coat he will have to send back for his own. Back in his standard Under Armour, Spieth praised a team that helped him achieve the ultimate goal of playing his best golf in Augusta.

Spieth said he had to set up a special list to filter his Twitter messages and choose which should receive responses. He said he never considered skipping the Heritage, which gave him an exemption in 2013 before he had full PGA Tour status.

“This is a tournament that I love, a course that I think suits my game,” said Spieth, who finished tied for 12th here in 2014. “And I’ve had just a great experience at the Heritage in the two years I’ve played.”

Follow assistant sports editor Stephen Fastenau at twitter.com/IPBG_Stephen and at facebook.com/GolfReporter.

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