January 15, 2009–Adam Scott arrived as a young freshman on the campus of UNLV in 1998, the season after the UNLV Men's Golf team won the NCAA Championship. Scott was a huge recruit for the Rebels, and was labeled as a can't-miss kid. While his time at UNLV was brief (about 3 semesters), Scott, who trains with Las Vegas' Butch Harmon at Las Vegas golf course Rio Secco Golf Club, has gone on to a very good pro career and has ignited into the stratosphere of true worldwide celebrity. From being following by the paparazzi for 'dating' Kate Hudson to recently securing a private Gulfstream Jet, Scott is living large.
Scott was in Hawaii to play in the Sony Open, and was spotted spending time with actress Kate Hudson on the beaches of Hawaii. Hudson was in town with family, while Scott was on the islands for the Mercedes Championships and the Sony event. There was no official word from either if they were dating, but the 'news' was posted all over the internet on both golf and gossip sites, proving that Scott is gaining crossover appeal.
On the course, Scott is coming off a knee injury, but is a 6-time winner on the PGA Tour and an 8-time winner internationally. He has earned more than $18 million in career PGA Tour earnings–not including his international cash that is in the millions–and has endorsement deals with Titleist, Footjoy, Gulfstream, Rolex, Burberry, and EA Sports, among others. All that makes it easier for him to afford the pricetag of his new jet that reportedly sells for $40 million, but the endorsement deal with the company also offsets some of the expense.
Scott has a reputation for playing in tournaments all over the world, and having the new jet will ease some of his travel challenges. "I've been on the waiting list for two-and-half years," Scott told Golfweek Magazine recently. "But it'll be worth it because it will make my life easier … I think it's important to play everywhere, but it's also what I enjoy doing. Being from Australia, I don't have any choice but to travel. But it's what all the great Australian players have done years before me." In just the last several years, Scott has played golf tournaments located in 14 different countries. The joy of travel was instilled as a youngster when he traveled to play in major junior events.
Looking back at the 1998-99 UNLV golf media guide, a very young-looking photo of Scott is on page 46. Also listed on the page are Scott's accomplishments to that point of his young career. Among the ones listed are the 1997 and 1998 Australian Junior Amateur Championships titles, and the 1996 New Zealand Junior Amateur Championship win, plus an appearance in the U.S. Amateur. "He is probably one of the more heralded players we have ever recruited here," said UNLV Hall-of-Fame Golf Coach Dwiane Knight. "Adam has a tremendous record in Australia, setting all kinds of course records with wins not only all over Australia, but also over the world winning major junior championships. He is a high profile player and possesses great talent and length."
Scott now looks to earn his first PGA Tour major victory in 2009, and appears confident heading into the season. "I'm just getting ready to head over to Honolulu to start the week for the Sony Open," Scott wrote on his blog at adamscott.com.au. "My week in Maui at the Mercedes Championship has been a good one. I was a little nervous and also excited to get back out on Tour to test my knee after being away from tournament play for the past six weeks. I was pleased with the outcome. It was a tough course to walk but I felt like I was getting stronger each day of play. Hats off to Geoff (Ogilvy) for such a dominant way to start the year!" Scott finished in a tie for 18th at the Mercedes, earning more than $77,000, or anough to buy some jet fuel–and maybe some flowers for a new lady?–and continue his ride in the ultimate stratosphere of golf and celebrity.