A longtime former PGA Tour star passed away on Sunday.
Doug Sanders, a 20-time winner on the PGA Tour, died over the weekend. He was 86 years old.
The Georgia native was known as one of the most-entertaining players on the tour. He turned professional in 1956 and amassed 24 career wins.
Sanders finished second at four different major championship tournaments. He was second at the PGA Championship in 1959, second at the U.S. Open in 1961 and second at the British Open in 1966 and 1970. His second-place finish in 1970 was a crushing one, as he missed a 3-foot putt for the win before losing an 18-hole playoff by a single stroke the next day to Jack Nicklaus.
Born July 24, 1933 in Cedartown, Georgia, Sanders was a self-taught golfer with a short, flat swing who played collegiately at the University of Florida. In 1956, Sanders won the Canadian Open as an amateur—the first amateur ever to pull off that feat. He turned pro soon after that victory and joined the TOUR for the 1957 season. His best year came in 1961, when he won five times. He had three-win seasons in 1962 and 1966. His final win came at the 1972 Kemper Open. Sanders was also a member of the 1967 U.S. Ryder Cup team captained by Ben Hogan. Named by Esquire as one of America’s “Ten Best Dressed Jocks” in 1973, Sanders was a self-proclaimed “clothes horse” who owned as many as 359 pairs of golf and dress shoes, many custom-dyed to match his vast rainbow of a wardrobe. He also opened a chain of Doug Sanders Dry Cleaning Centers throughout the United States in the 1960s.
Sanders played collegiately at Florida for one season before turning pro. He led the Gators to an SEC Championship and sixth-place finish at the NCAA Tournament.
Our thoughts are with Doug's family and friends.
May he rest in peace.