Watson returns to En-Joie ... 35 years later

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Tom Watson (pictured in the early 1980s and this year) is returning to En-Joie Golf Club for the first time since 1976.
June 20, 2011
Champions Tour staff

When Champions Tour legend Tom Watson last played at En-Joie Golf Course, in the final round of the 1976 B.C. Open, the date was Aug. 8. Watson posted a final-round 3-under 68 to follow rounds of 69-70-73 and finish tied for 21st in the PGA TOUR event. The total purse was $200,000 and Watson earned a check for $1,850. A similar result for Watson at the Dick's Sporting Goods Open would be worth about $20,000 from the $1.7 million purse.

At the conclusion of the 1976 B.C. Open, Ben Crenshaw led the official money list with $213,201, while Watson ranked 15th with $107,937. As a comparison, after the 2010 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational was completed on Aug. 8, Ernie Els led the money list with $3,941,028 while No. 15 was Luke Donald with $2,095,770.

It will be 34 years, 10 months and 16 days between starts at En-Joie for Tom Watson when he returns to tee it up in the first round of the Champions Tour's Dick's Sporting Goods Open on June 24 -- that's 12,738 days.

Let's have some fun and take a look at a few other things that happened on Aug. 8, 1976 ...

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• The No. 1 song on the charts was "Don't Go Breakin' My Heart" by Elton John and Kiki Dee

• Gas was 59 cents a gallon

• Gerald Ford was President of the United States and Nelson Rockefeller was Vice President

• A postage stamp cost 13 cents

• The average income in the United States was $16,095

• The top-rated show on television was "All in the Family"

• Mark "The Bird" Fidrych was enjoying a standout rookie year pitching for the Detroit Tigers

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• The Chicago White Sox wore shorts for the first game of a doubleheader with the Kansas City Royals

• A dozen eggs cost 84 cents

• Recently released movies like "Midway", "The Omen" and "Silent Movie" were enjoying success at the box office

• The Dow Jones index was 1,004. A month earlier the index had reached 1,011, its highest point between January 1973 and October 1982.

• The New York Yankees and Kansas City Royals led their divisions in the American League, while the Cincinnati Reds and Philadelphia Phillies lead the divisions in the National League

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• Following the merger of the ABA and NBA, a player dispersal is held on Aug. 8 with Artis Gilmore being selected by the Chicago Bulls

• Legionnaire's disease got its name after a mystery illness had broken out the previous month when 10,000 legionnaires attending a convention in Harrisburg, Pa., got sick. Twenty-four persons had already died and 87 were ill, completely baffling doctors as to what virus or fungus could have caused the illness

• Singer (98 Degrees) and television personality ("Dancing with the Stars") Drew Lachey was born in Cincinnati, Ohio.

• Oscar winner Dustin Hoffman turned 39.

• Milk was $1.65 a gallon

• Scott Stapp, lead singer for the band Creed, celebrated his third birthday.

• In Tanzania, the locals were celebrating Farmer's Day or Nane Nane, which means 8-8 in Swahili

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• Dave Marcis won the Talladega 500 in a Dodge Charger

• Roger Federer was a twinkle in his parents' eyes before coming into the world five years later to claim 16 major tennis titles. Tom Watson owned one major championship at this stage, the 1975 British Open, but went on to win seven more in his PGA TOUR career.

Bob Wynn earned his first and only PGA TOUR victory at the B.C. Open, shooting a final-round 69 for a one-stroke win over Bob Gilder.

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