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Masters story lines don't need the big names

By Taylor Zarzour
Special to The Observer
Taylor Zarzour
This is Taylor Zarzour's fifth straight year covering The Masters for the Charlotte Observer. He is currently the host of Bleacher Report Radio each weekday from 11 am to 2 pm on Sirius XM Channel 92. He continues to live in Charlotte with his wife and two children.
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2014/04/12/21/42/905-12paLh.Em.156.jpeg|429
    Jeff Siner - MCT
    Jordan Spieth chips his ball onto the 10th green during the third round at the Masters Tournament in Augusta, Ga., Saturday, April 12, 2014. (Jeff Siner/Charlotte Observer/MCT)
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    Andrew Redington - Getty Images
    Fred Couples of the United States prepares to hit a shot on the 18th hole during the third round of the 2014 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on April 12, 2014 in Augusta, Georgia. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
  • http://media.charlotteobserver.com/smedia/2014/04/11/21/31/204-10eVmA.Em.156.jpeg|228
    David J. Phillip - AP
    Rickie Fowler chips out of a bunker on the 13th hole during the second round of the Masters golf tournament Friday, April 11, 2014, in Augusta, Ga. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

None of golf's biggest stars have won a tournament in 2014, and more specifically, for the first time in twenty years it's two biggest names, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, aren't playing on the weekend in The Masters.

The sport needs a shot in the arm. Perhaps a little history. Maybe the sport's premier event will produce its youngest champion ever. Or it's oldest. Here are five possibilities that could give the game of golf a big boost:

5. Bubba Watson (-5, tied 1st): he has a homemade swing, is well known for taking big risks (see the 10th hole in the playoff two years ago), and well, his name is Bubba. Plus, he owns the original General Lee from "The Dukes of Hazzard," and is the creator of the YouTube hit video "Golf Boys." A second green jacket in three years for one of golf's more popular players would be well received.

4. Adam Scott (+1, tied 16th): the tournament's defending champion had a rough Saturday, limping home with a 76. But that would make a victory from six shots back even more appealing. Back to back Masters titles would propel Scott into an historically elite class and earn him the number one world ranking. And let's face it, men want to be Adam Scott, and women want to be with Adam Scott.

3. Rickie Fowler (-3, tied 5th): the 2012 Wells Fargo Championship is still Fowler's only victory on American soil, but the 25 year old has legions of young fans wearing his loud colors. Fowler's brought a Generation X audience into the sport, and those types of fans will multiply by ten fold if he wins The Masters today.

2. Fred Couples (-1, tied 10th): Couples would become the game's oldest ever major winner by eight years, surpassing Jack Nicklaus' historical win here in 1986. Freddie has always been one of the game's top draws, and a second green jacket (22 years after his first) would easily be the most celebrated result on the grounds of Augusta National.

1. Jordan Spieth (-5, tied 1st): Spieth would become the youngest Masters winner of all time, surpassing Tiger Woods' transcendent victory in 1997. More importantly, if this 20 year old Texan wins on the game's biggest stage it instantly eliminates the lack of storylines the sport is struggling with. All of us love to search for the next big thing. It would be right in front of us if Spieth dons The Masters green jacket tonight.

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