The majority of PGA Tour golfers have gone through a thorough and brutal college golf system and worked their way up to reach the premier golf tour in the world.
College golf in America is often where professional golfers are discovered and where the best amateurs in the world grow up and become famous.
Scott Parel didn’t come through the college golf system. At one point, Scott Parel wasn’t even a golfer and his goal wasn’t to make a successful career as a PGA Tour champion.
He studied computer science at the University of Georgia. For 10 years, Parel worked as a computer programmer and database administrator, jobs you wouldn’t expect anyone to make the leap into professional golf.
He turned professional in 1996 at the late age of 31 and for a long time, the 56-year-old field on mini-tours and development tours. He made his first Korn Ferry Tour appearance at the Nike South Florida Open in 1998.
— PGA TOUR Champions (@ChampionsTour) February 19, 2022
It’s been an incredible journey for Parel and now 24 years later he’s earned nearly $5 million on the PGA Tour Champions and made fleeting appearances on the PGA Tour.
The Michigan man played at the US Open in 2002 and 2005, a world away from his desk working with computers for sure.
He is a three-time PGA Tour Champions winner and has the opportunity to win for the fourth time at the Chubb Classic this week, the event he won last season.
With 18 holes remaining, Parel is two shots behind the timeless Bernhard Langer with Retief Goosen and Jerry Kelly also in contention.
“I love it. He’s amazing (Langer). I saw him yesterday, I’m like, I’m glad you’re shooting your age and not mine because then we wouldn’t stand a chance,” Parel said after the second round. Saturday.
“I love playing with Bernhard. Obviously he’s a special golfer and a better person than him. So, yeah, I’m looking forward to having a chance. I don’t know if I’ll be with him or not, but I’m somewhere in the mix.”
With over $13 million in total earnings over his professional career, Parel has earned the right to rival Langer and his ilk. His story is incredible and it is far from over.