2015 John Deere Classic: Final Round

2015 John Deere Classic

'I Came Here for a Reason'

THE MODERATOR: All right. Well, we will jump right in. We'd like
to welcome Jordan Spieth, 2013 and now 2015 John Deere Classic champion.
Jordan, congratulations on your second win at the John Deere Classic,
third win of the season and fourth win overall. Pretty impressive stuff
to say.

JORDAN SPIETH: You better get those facts right.

THE MODERATOR: Oh, my bad.

JORDAN SPIETH: I don't get credit for Australia or Tiger's event.

THE MODERATOR: With that said, I will stop talking and turn it over to you for some comments.

SPIETH: It's really cool. What an incredible week. Started off so
slow, and to be able to shoot 20-under in three rounds is obviously nice
momentum. So yeah, to be four back with six to go, all we were saying
was we birdied five out of the last 6 two years ago in order to get into
a playoff, so why can't we do it again. We're more patient and it
should be easier this time. And I think I ended up with four and didn't
need that fifth, but you know, obviously 16 was nice and unexpected.
But really, 17 was a great hole. 17 gives me a lot of confidence
because I know where I'm at. I came off of, you know, obviously an
emotional high off that chip-in and really settled myself down. I had
been driving the ball poorly, and I hit really two really good shots to
put it in a great position to make four with kind of an off number into
the green. Hit a solid chip and a solid putt. I really couldn't have
pictured that hole better in that position, and I'm going to look back
on that hole as far as how I performed under pressure, the most
pressure. And then I hit the fairway and green on 18, had a decent look
at it. And then just hung in there on the playoff. I mean 18 today
with the wet conditions and the breeze into from the left is arguably
the hardest hole on the golf course. So par's a really good score.
You're not going to see that many birdies there, especially in a
playoff. And I took advantage on Tom's miss on the second playoff hole,
and I clubbed down from a 6-iron to a 7-iron after his ball went into
the water, just so I could go ahead and rip it right at the middle of
the green with a straight one, put a great swing on the ball and two
solid putts. So really the finish there when I really didn't feel like
tee to green I had much today gives me a lot of momentum to draw on, if I
don't have my best stuff, that we can still close strong.

Q. Jordan, do you feel like this ends any speculation about you made the right decision?
I really didn't care anyway. (Laughs). No, I came here for a
reason, and we accomplished that reason, and certainly have some
momentum going into next week.

Q. With a full start last year (indiscernible).
It means a lot, yeah. You're behind the eight ball if you
shoot even par on the first round. I was second round, given I had no
answers for how I played the first round. I was just really trying to
make the cut, honestly. Normally I'm like, ah, it's all right. I'll
make some birdies tomorrow and get it back. I honestly in the second
round was thinking as I was about to go tee off, where can I really
weasel my way around today to just manage two-putt birdies, whatever it
is, get some wedges to get in there close, and then you know, in the
middle of that round found a little spark, and that was obviously the
key for the entire tournament to turn it around.

Q. Jordan,
you've played some obviously great golf this year. How satisfying is
it to not be on your A game and walk out of here with the trophy?
Yeah. You know, when I say that, it sounds bad. When I say I
didn't have my best stuff, I didn't have my best stuff for those first
12 holes or so. Certainly turned it around there with some good short
game and good putts down the stretch, and then a couple of nice iron
shots. But yeah, it's very satisfying to be able to have stretches
where I played poorly and to still come out with a win, just those
middle two rounds were just good enough to get the job done when I was
only 3-under in the other two rounds combined, which would have missed
the cut if I'd put them together. So it's extremely satisfying. And
that's golf. Not everybody is going to play well the entire time, but
it's good to know that when I am feeling that spark, that we're able to
get it that deep, to 20-under.

Q. By the end of the day you were stronger with your driver.
Yeah. The whole week.

Q. Talk about the driver situation and being able to overcome that?
My driver is really good on the range. (Laughs). It got --
I'm just not getting deep enough into my swing. I'm not patient enough
in my back swing on the golf course. It's easy on the driving range
because, you know, there's no penalty to it. But on the golf course
when there's trouble in play, I'm getting a little steep. I'm not
getting all the way around, and therefore at the top of my swing my
club's not pointed at the target. I'm hitting it where my club's
pointed, but that's pretty far to the right. So I've got some work to
do, obviously, because the driver is a very important club at St.
Andrews more than many other golf courses. So with my longer clubs I'm
going to have a lot of repetitions this week. It's going to be a quick
turn around, so I can grab these feels with my short game, continue to
work on them. But I do need to really fine tune my driver through the
3-iron there.

Q. And with righting to make the cut and
getting back in this tournament, extra holes today, how much do you have
left in the tank and can you get the body to cooperate?
I've got plenty in the tank. I just had a two-week break where I
didn't do a whole lot. So going on stretches of four weeks in a row of
contending each week is -- you know, like leading into the Masters,
those couple weeks right before could have taken a lot out of me with a
runner-up and then a playoff loss. And we rebounded nicely. So I think
in a shorter week it'll be easier. The only hard part is obviously the
time zone adjustment, but there's enough daylight there where I can
play either really early or really late. So I'll pick a game plan as we
get on the flight here. I'll talk to my instructor who's over there
and we'll figure out what's the best option to know St. Andrews as well
as we can.

Q. (Indiscernible).
had about 250 to the front, 257 hole, so 3-wood is too much club and
that 3-iron is going to carry 235, 240 max and soft. So I hit the
3-iron knowing that I needed to hit it -- it was 230 yards just to carry
the two bunkers that were short of the green. And there was mud on the
right side of the ball. So I knew I was going to shoot it left. So to
trust the mud and put a swing onto get the ball in that little shoot
through there was nice. I mean hit soft. I took a little off of it
given that there was mud on it. Everyone had mud balls today. So I'm
not making an excuse whatsoever, but I played it correctly that time,
took some off of it to where if I was below the holy could get it up and

Q. And what is it like from 18 trying to sign autographs?
Yeah. I feel kind of bad. You know, there's so many kids and
so many little Under Armour hats and stuff like that. It's so cool to
see the support and to have that impact on the younger generation, it's
really incredible, and I feel bad about not being able to do it, but if I
stayed around, the guys on the plane are going to be mad at me. So you
can't please everybody. So hopefully get to them at some point, but
it's awesome. I mean the crowd here, like I said earlier, it's a great
scene on 18 to get a lot of people in. But it's another thing for
everyone to fill that space in. It's there, but everyone filled it in.
They were respectful. The roars were awesome coming from 18 that you
could hear early in the round, you could hear it as we closed in.
Knowledgeable fans and some of the nicest people in the world here.

Q. With
that said, can you try and describe what this tournament means to you
and is this a tournament you'd like to keep coming back to in the
Yeah. This tournament means a lot to me.
I mean this jump started my career. Or I wouldn't say jump started it.
It took it to a different level when I had some momentum, to close it
out. I'd probably be -- I said it earlier, probably six months back --
six to -- six months to a year further back in my career had that shot
not gone in and then survived that playoff, given I wouldn't have been
in the playoff, the Presidents Cup, my world ranking would have been
down given I'd played the playoffs extremely well that year with a
couple of top 5s including a runner up. So I would have been setback a
little bit starting the next year, could have played a different
schedule. Who knows what could have happened. So it means a lot to me.
This is a tournament that I truly love being at. We have a great time
here. I love going to Duck City. It's one of my favorite restaurant
stops of the year, Chef Charles there. And you know, so yeah, it's
incredible memories that we were reliving coming up the stretch right at
the end of the right.

Q. Can you describe three or
four things that really -- that you take from this experience to St.
Andrews that really work in terms of preparation?
Yeah, one, I need to fine tune my driver. I love where my putting is
at. Really my pace control, my speed is awesome right now. Obviously
going to have to adjust to the greens over there, but still,
understanding how hard I'm hitting it, given the slopes. I don't think I
had a 3-putt from on the green, No. 3 today was a little off, but
that's been the strength of mine this year has been my first putts,
leaving myself a good length. So take that momentum, work on my driver,
and I really need to fine tune my good full swings with an iron,
because I need to fine tune my -- excuse me, my full swings, and when I
go hard at the ball, seems to be there. It's the ones where I have to
take something off of it that I'm really struggling with, and what I've
been trying to do coming back out of that break. I hit some horrid iron
shots this week when I had to take some off of it. And that's the
definition of what you do over there when the wind picks up and the
conditions are bad you've gotta hit three-quarter pinch shots and be
able to control those and have great distance control. And I don't have
that yet, so I need to get over there and work with my instructor to
find the solution.

Q. I know you typically say you only
focus on what's immediately in front of you, but now immediately in
front of you, you have the British Open. Are you thinking about the
Grand Slam at all?
If I win next week, then I'll think about it. I don't think about -- I will be focused solely on how I
can learn as much as I can these next three days and then just keep this
going into the tournament. I just want to put myself in position.
Feel like if I do that, that same formula that I continue to talk about
and not just majors, but any tournament will kick in mentally. And so
it'll just come down to the physical skills and the draw and whatnot
there. But no thoughts past next week will come into my head while I'm

Q. Did you see what happened when Danny picked up his ball?
Gosh, I did. I didn't know -- I've never seen it before. So I
didn't know the ruling. He asked me, I figured that if he hadn't
cleaned it, if he had just picked it up, it's the same thing as if you
were just trying to identify it in the rough or whatever. And I guess
that wasn't the case, so I'm glad we called an official over, because I
said, I'm not sure. You may want to call one over. I don't think it's a
penalty. And he did. And I asked him as he was walking to the green,
and he said it was one shot. And certainly at the end I very much feel
for him. That's tough. I mean if he didn't win last week, I'd really
feel for him. (Laughs). But you know, I mean that's a really tough
break, because I don't think it affected the outcome of that hole
whatsoever. And you know, and he didn't know. It was still soaked.
The ground was wet. You get mud on the ball today. We got a lot of
rain. So it's easy to think early in the round that you continue to do
it, and you know, fortunately I didn't hit many fairways to start, so I
didn't really have much of an issue. I could just go ahead and play it.
But yeah, I really do feel for Danny. I've played a lot of golf with
him in Dallas, too, and it was fun playing those three rounds with him.

Q. Can
you just talk about St. Andrews? I understand you've played there a
couple of times. What you think it will be like, what you know about
the golf course.
Only thing I've heard so far is
that it's playing softer than usual, which that's kind of nice for
having come from here. I loved it. I absolutely loved it. I love the
town, I loved the R&A Clubhouse. I love the, what do you call it,
the Himalayas Putting Green, the entire experience being there for two
days was really cool. The golf course specifically, I think it's just
mind boggling that it can hold the test of time and still host a major
championship, I mean centuries and centuries after it was built. And
you know, with just minor tweaks here and there. So I'm excited to get
there. It's yielded very low scores. That's why I think this is
advantageous to feel like you're making a lot of birdies, feel like you
need to make a lot of birdies. That way you can be maybe a little more
aggressive than you would normally be starting a major championship, but
I think it all depends on getting over there and establishing a game
plan because when I played it whenever it was, three and a half years
ago, I was in very much a different position and could take more chances
and whatnot. So I've gotta pick my spots.

THE MODERATOR: All right, Jordan, congratulations. Best of luck.