Ted Scott reflects on being a three-time Masters-winning caddie; Joe LaCava, other fellow caddies chime in
Ted Scott always makes life about others. That’s just who he is. So when his player, Scottie Scheffler, won the Masters on Sunday on one of sports’ biggest stages, the unassuming Lafayette, Louisiana native was his usual self.
And that’s just fine.
“I’m humbled to be part of the team honestly. I’ve never hit a shot,” said Scott, who along with Sunday’s victory with Scheffler, was also on the bag for Bubba Watson for wins in the 2012 and 2014 Masters. “Watching these guys this close is the coolest thing as a caddie to walk up 18 and six-putt (laughs), or however many putts we had (four), I feel super fortunate to be a part of it. I couldn’t be more grateful.”
And that gratefulness comes out in the veteran loopers actions, daily.
During Saturday’s third round, Scott and Scheffler were first in on the first hole and Scott knew the other caddie in the group Heath Holt (Charl Schwartzel) could use help with his bag as it was laying down behind the green. Without stopping to think, Scott picked up the bag and stood it up about 20 yards closer to the second tee and respectfully ensured the clubs were still in place, all of this with Scheffler’s bag in his right hand mind you.
Scott just knows how to help other people, and looks for those opportunities constantly.
When asked what it is about his player, who’s won four of the nine starts with Scott, and what makes him so good, Scott explained it simply.
“He just doesn’t really have a weakness. He’s tough mentally,” Scott said.
What is the “It” factor which Scheffler brings to the table.
“If I knew that, I’d sell it,” Scott laughed. “He’s got an incredible family and his wife has an incredible family.”
That family and long time swing coach Randy Smith enjoyed watching Scheffler give his green jacket ceremony speech Sunday during the fading sunset on Augusta’s practice green. Smith and Scott sat next to each other, Scott with the pin and flag on his shoulder.
Scott spoke to a small group of media members by the scoring area, with the pin leaning on his shoulder. When asked to compare the amazing feat of caddying for two different Masters winners, Scott explained it this way.
“It’s different obviously, a different player and it’s a lot of fun each time,” Scott said. “Honestly, I was going to retire in November when I got the call from Scottie, and I didn’t think I’d be caddying at any more Masters, and then here I come here with the No. 1 player in the world and he wins it, it’s very surreal and it’s pretty crazy honestly.”
One can only imagine, with the amazing memories and friendships Scott has out on Tour, that it would have been humbling to say goodbye to it and retire. Ultimately, what caused him to come back?
“I had my kids and my wife pray about it. It took a week, and they came back and said, ‘Dad, we think you ought to do it’ and then I said, ‘Well pray for another week,’ and they said, ‘we definitely think you should do it’ and that was the deciding factor. I didn’t choose it,” Scott said.
Few caddies have looped for two different Masters winners in their career. That accomplishment means a good deal to Scott, but his humility comes through in his answer about it once again.
“I’ve never hit a golf shot here, I’m not going to take any credit, but there’s a ton of incredible caddies that can march these great players around this place. A lot of these local caddies, for (us) who travel here, we get a lot of knowledge from them. My friend Steve Kling, who I stay with, is a local caddie. That guy, I’m picking his brain constantly about this pin, that pin, I’m just getting emotional thinking about it.”
Scott began sobbing a bit at this point. Who could blame him? A lot of sweat equity went into this effort.
Scott said there was a celebratory dinner at Kling’s house Sunday night.
Just minutes before Scott and Scheffler made their way to the first tee, the veteran looper showed his player the logo on the shirt he was wearing under the jumpsuit.
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“It just says ‘God is in Control.’ It’s from a friend of mine (caddie AJ Montecinos) who came up with that logo. And that was kind of the theme,” Scott said.
Montecinos was thrilled that something he’s put a lot of work into helped that unique player/caddie team, especially on such a grand stage.
“I’m just so elated for Teddy and Scottie,” Montecinos told Caddie Network by phone. “So cool for Ted to rep that shirt and for Scheffler to say ‘God is in Control’ in his interview after is all God and it’s just amazing.”
When asked what emotions he was relating as Scott was tearing up, he explained it well.
“Whooo, I don’t know man,” Scott said. “I guess the Masters champions cry, so I figure I’d join them.”
Although retirement has already been explored, would there be any desire to get to it in Scott’s immediate future?
“I made an April Fools joke on social media, I said I was going out on top,” Scott laughed. “I wasn’t going to come to the Masters but I decided to come and I guess I’ll have to keep working at least until next year, so we’ll see what happens.”
One of the few other caddies who’s been through victories with two separate players at Augusta is Joe LaCava, and when reached by Caddie Network for this story, LaCava was overjoyed for his long-time friend.
“I just think this is great for Teddy, he’s such a hard worker,” said LaCava, who caddied Fred Couples to a green jacket in 1992 and turned the trick again in 2019 with Tiger Woods. “Scottie is young and plenty talented but Teddy brings experience at that course and knowledge that he has gained not only with Bubba but watching other players (who are obviously playing well at the time on the way to Bubba’s wins) play so he can use that to help Scottie since he has much less experience and knowledge at this particular place.”
Asked if he attended the celebratory dinner at Kling’s house with Scott, LaCava joked, “Is Ted much of a party guy?”
LaCava also sees a willingness to learn from Scott when he observes Scheffler.
“It seems like Scottie is very easy to get along with and eager to learn and hear whatever Teddy can bring to the table,” LaCava said.
And what Scott brings to the table for his fellow caddies and even people he’s never met is something to appreciate as well.
“A third win in Augusta proves he is a great caddie but everyone will tell you, he is an even better person,” caddie Lance Bailey told Caddie Network Sunday night. “Ted goes out of his way to make you feel welcome and he has never met a stranger. He treats everyone with class and I feel blessed to call him my friend. I am just so excited for Ted to get this win at The Masters with Scottie.”
Scott’s long-time friend and fellow caddie Paul Tesori also feels elation for his pal.
“I’ve said it for the las 15 years, he’s the best caddie in the world,” Tesori said. “I’ve always held true to that statement. I’m just so proud of him right now.”
Understanding how rare it is for a caddie to win the Masters with two different players, Tesori has an interesting take on it as it relates to Scott.
“It doesn’t surprise me. We’ve been through all his other wins,” Tesori said. “Both of the other Masters. When you do what he’s done, with a new player and a new friend, it becomes overwhelming with joy and satisfaction.”
Count veteran looper Danny Sahl impressed with Scott’s accomplishment as well to loop for two different Masters winners.
“Third Masters win with two different players, it’s a testament to Teddy’s extensive knowledge of Augusta National and his strength and spirit to keep his player cool and enjoying every moment,” Sahl said.
And did Scott and Scheffler ever earn the right now to enjoy every moment from here on out.
What a wonderful team in this individual sport.