OLYMPIA FIELDS, Ill. -- In 1965, a young kid with tons of power and plenty of potential won a well-known golf tournament in Georgia by a then-tournament record nine shots at just 25 years old.
His name was Jack Nicklaus, the tournament was the Masters and the quote has been passed from generation to generation, legend to legend, but still seems to perfectly encapsulate each new budding star who accomplishes something in the game we didn't think was possible.
"Nicklaus played a game with which I am not familiar."
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Bobby Jones spoke those words in 1965. It isn't crazy to think they fit perfectly when watching Bryson DeChambeau.
For seven days the country witnessed, on a national stage at Olympia Fields, the brilliance of this 21-year-old with all the quirks in the world and just as much game. Much ballyhoo has been made about his club lengths and his golf swing, his putting approach and his mentality to an already complicated sport, most of that overshadowing the most important thing to come out of this U.S. Amateur Championship with the title on Sunday.
DeChambeau is a damn good golfer. An incredible talent, the likes of which only comes across our radar every decade or so.
For whatever reason, his quirky approach to the game has somehow overshadowed the fact that, again, he's amazing. Absolutely, unequivocally brilliant at this sport, with the perfect attitude, the "yes sir, no ma'am" manners and the wherewithal to tell his opponent, after stomping on his throat for two straight hours in a championship match, "We're both going to the Masters!"
There is a saying that plays out in some regard, "everyone is playing checkers while he's playing chess," and the idea fits the DeChambeau approach to golf perfectly. His entire game plan is as cerebral as it is physical, but one doesn't overshadow the other.
He showed all his different styles and tactics throughout the week at the U.S. Amateur, posting mirror-image 70s during the stroke play portion (two birdies, two bogeys, the rest pars) to make it to match play, and then going about his business the way it needed to be done, exhausting just enough energy to make it to another day.
His opening-round match against Robby Salomon was muscle-flexing, capped off by a "this isn't even necessary" birdie on the 12th to finish things off 8 and 6. He leaned on his consistency against Matt NeSmith in the round of 32, with the lone loose swing coming when things were all but over as he cruised to a 5-up win. His victory over Maverick McNealy was simply outlasting one of the other favorites to win this championship, doing what he had to do when he had to do them to finish things off 3 and 2, and he took down Paul Dunne by making just one bogey in 16 holes.
When he got to the semifinals, playing the fiery Sean Crocker, it looked like a veteran playing a rookie, with DeChambeau using mind over muscle, even though Bryson could pump a drive 15 yards past Crocker whenever he wanted. And when he got to the final, despite a stumble during the middle part of the possible 36-hole final, Derek Bard never stood a chance.
As I passed a fan on Saturday, when DeChambeau was finishing off Crocker to make it to the final, he was telling a friend, "It's like they invited a pro to play this week," which is a perfect way to explain exactly what went down over seven days at Olympia Fields.
So why isn't everyone praising this kid? Why are people still doubting his unique swing or his power or his delicate approach to a mind-numbingly tough sport?
Maybe it's fear. Maybe we are scared of something different, a kid that carries a chart in his bag that helps him understand how far back to take certain wedges depending on the distance. Maybe the fact that he stepped off a 2-footer on Sunday during the championship match makes us, the mentally weak when approaching this game, confused at why one with so much talent would take things an unnecessary step further.
All of these reasons, of course, are ridiculous. DeChambeau has all the upside in the world to win at every level, with the putter being his most valuable weapon. The downside to his career going forward is past U.S. Amateur winner Ryan Moore, a polished amateur player who has gone on to win four times on the PGA Tour, a disappointment to some but an impressive career to plenty of pros that have never come close to what the former UNLV star has pulled off.
DeChambeau hopes his approach revolutionizes the game. He hopes that in 10 years a new generation of golfers will see the way he did it and realize that might be the easiest way to success.
Who knows if that will ever be the case, but one thing is apparent: Whatever DeChambeau is doing is working, and if he turned pro tomorrow, he would be competing sooner instead of later.
People love to hate on the new guy. I, for one, can't wait to root him on.
Shane Bacon is a regular contributor to FOXSports.com's golf coverage. Follow him on Twitter at @shanebacon.