Butch Harmon was four-and-a-half years old when his father, Claude Senior captured the 1948 Masters.
Now aged 79, he’s been used to having an Augusta National member in the family for almost 50-years of his life, until his father passed away in 1989 while Butch coached Masters winners Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Fred Couples and also Dustin Johnson.
When it comes to all things the Masters, Harmon has more than enough Augusta credentials, so it’s no surprise when he labels new Masters champion Jon Rahm as a ‘superstar of the future”.
“You know the good thing is that Jon was there in case there was a mistake, and as we saw, Brooks made some mistakes going out and Jon took advantage,” said Harmon commentating on SKY Sports Golf.
“He never not kept the hammer down. He kept finding the fairways, finding the greens and that is what you have to do to win a great championship. I’ve said for a while now that Jon is the best player in the world for the past few years and today, he stepped-up and proved it.
“He won a second major championship. That is special. Very, very special.”
Harmon was asked by SKY’s host Nick Doherty about the strengths he showed in four-putting the first hole on Thursday for a double-bogey to 71 holes later when he claimed an emphatic four-shot triumph.
“Jon won because he drove the ball beautifully, he hit the ball on the fairway every time he had to, and every time Brooks Koepka made a mistake he was right there,” said Harmon.
“He was right there making sure he did not make the mistake. Jon was just the complete golfer out there.
“I think we are all surprised because we didn’t think that Koepka would shoot 75 but Jon WAS THERE. It started at the first hole of his final 18 where he had a not too easy second shot but he put the ball on the green. When things got a little tight he made the putts he needed to make and that’s how you win championships.
“Emotionally, Jon does lose his temper but the way he can harness that fire could see him turn out one of the best players the game has ever seen. He has all the tools. He’s strong. He’s long. He drives it in the fairway and he hits it on the greens, and he putts beautifully.
“He now knows how to control his emotions, as that was the only thing keeping him back. He’s been the No. 1 player in the world and he’s gone back to the No. 1 player in the game but this man is the superstar of the future. He’s exactly what golf is in the future.
“He has tremendous nerves and he’s learnt how to control his emotions. He’s the total package and this is why he’s winning.”
And it begged the question that despite all the pre-Masters hype centring around the likes of Rory McIlroy winning a long overdue maiden Masters or Scottie Scheffler holding onto his title, it was Rahm who delivered and with Harmon predicting the victory door will open on many more majors for the Spaniard.
“Jon proved it out there this week why he’s the best player in the world,” said Harmon. “The number of times he’s won in the past six months or so (Six wins in his last 14 starts). The way he’s gone about his business. His demeanour while he’s worked on his own personality allows him to accept bad shots.
“It’s hard when you are as good as he is. He also has a Spaniard and they run a little hot, at times. That’s what we like about him and that’s his personality. His personality now is that of a major champion and there will be many more major championships to come.
“The only thing that could stop him now is some sort of injury but then, as we see, he keeps himself in good shape. I am just so impressed with the way he handled himself in that final round. Koepka had played beautifully coming into the final round but he didn’t deliver. Jon Rahm is the one who delivered.”
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