Height: 5 ft 11 in
Born: January 30, 1955
Birthplace: Norfolk, Virginia
College: Wake Forest University
Turned Pro: 1976
Most casual golf fans under the age of 40 probably think of Curtis Strange as the expert analyst on ESPN. The fact is Strange was one of the most intense competitors on the PGA Tour and one of only two men (Ben Hogan) to win back to back United States Open Championships in the modern era.
Strange’s father owned the local country club and introduced Curtis and his twin brother Allan to golf when they were seven years old. Curtis became a highly accomplished amateur player winning the prestigious North and South Amateur in 1974 and 1975.
Strange and fellow future tour player Jay Haas led the Demon Deacons to the NCAA national title.
Strange turned pro in 1976. He won his first PGA Tour title three years later at the 1979 Pensacola Open. He kicked off the new decade, a decade he would dominate, by winning the Houston Open in May 1980, defeating multiple Major champion Lee Trevino in a playoff.
Strange was a force on the PGA Tour during the 1980’s. He became the first player to win $1,000,000 in a single season. He made the Ryder Cup team in 1983, 1985, 1987 and 1989. He made thirteen consecutive cuts at Major tournaments between the 1987 Masters and the 1990 U.S. Open. Strange finished runner up at the Masters in 1985 and tied for second at the 1989 PGA Championship.
After his fiftieth birthday, Strange made a run at the Champions Tour but failed to find the form that led him to 17 PGA Tour titles. His best finish was a third place finish in 2005. Strange has found much more success for his insight and analysis as a member of ESPN’s golf team.