SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Phil Mickelson is an unabashed football fan. What you might not know, though, is that preparing for the big game has also helped his game in the past.
At least that’s what his record says.
In 1996, when the Super Bowl was in this town, Mickelson won the Waste Management Phoenix Open; eight years later, the title game was also here and he finished runner-up.
And of course, it just so happens that this year’s Super Bowl is here once again.
“I think it's fun the Super Bowl is here,” Mickelson said. “I think this is a great place to host the Super Bowl. This town, as you can see from this golf tournament, really supports sporting events, from Arizona State athletics to every professional sport. Having a Super Bowl here means a lot and for me to play well means a lot, too; '96 was a great memory for me, winning the tournament for the first time. I had not played well in this event prior to that. I really wanted to experience the feel coming down the stretch in contention with a chance to win. And all those people -- I hit a shot on 16 I will never forget. The pin was back left. I hit it about three or four feet and it was the loudest roar I think I still remember to this day. It was amazing. I want to experience that again. There is something about bringing football that just has a good synergy.”