John Goodman

John Goodman

Born: December 28, 1909
Died: August 8, 1970 (at age 60)
Popularity:
Biography

John George Goodman (December 28, 1909 - August 8, 1970) was the last amateur golfer to win the U.S. Open, 84 years ago in 1933, and also won the U.S. Amateur in 1937.

Born to Lithuanian immigrants in South Omaha, Nebraska, Goodman was orphaned at the age of 14. His mother died when he was 11, after giving birth to her 13th child, and his father later abandoned the family. Goodman became a caddy at the Field Club in Omaha, and while a student at Omaha South High School, he won the Omaha city championship in 1925; four years later, he won the first of three consecutive Nebraska Amateur titles. He won the Trans-Mississippi Amateur three times (1927, 1931, and 1935). He gained national notoriety at age 19 in 1929 when he defeated Bobby Jones in the first round of match play competition at the U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach.

Goodman served in the U.S. Army during World War II, and did not turn professional until 1960; he supported himself throughout his career by selling insurance. A municipal golf course in southwest Omaha is named for him.

Tournament wins (60)

this list may be incomplete
  • 1925 Omaha Caddie Championship, Omaha Metropolitan Golf Championship
  • 1927 Trans-Mississippi Amateur
  • 1929 Nebraska Amateur
  • 1930 Nebraska Amateur
  • 1931 Trans-Mississippi Amateur, Nebraska Amateur
  • 1933 U.S. Open
  • 1935 Trans-Mississippi Amateur
  • 1936 Mexican Amateur, Arcola Country Club Invitational
  • 1937 U.S. Amateur, Mexican Amateur
  • 1939 Arcola Country Club Invitational

Major championships

Wins (1)

Year Championship 54 holes Winning score Margin Runner-up
1933 U.S. Open 6 shot lead −1 (75-66-70-76=287) 1 stroke Ralph Guldahl

Amateur wins (1)

Year Championship Winning score Runner-up
1937 U.S. Amateur 2 up Raymond E. Billows

Results timeline

Tournament 1927 1928 1929
U.S. Open DNP DNP T45
U.S. Amateur DNQ DNP R16
British Amateur DNP DNP DNP
Tournament 1930 1931 1932 1933 1934 1935 1936 1937 1938 1939
Masters Tournament NYF NYF NYF NYF DNP DNP 43 DNP DNP DNP
U.S. Open T11 DNP T14 LA 1 LA T43 T36 T22 8 LA DNP CUT
U.S. Amateur R32 R32 2 R32 R128 SF SF 1 QF R32
British Amateur DNP DNP DNP DNP R16 DNP DNP DNP R32 DNP
Tournament 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945 1946 1947
Masters Tournament DNP DNP DNP NT NT NT DNP DNP
U.S. Open CUT CUT NT NT NT NT CUT DNP
U.S. Amateur DNQ R64 NT NT NT NT DNQ R32
British Amateur NT NT NT NT NT NT DNP DNP

Note: Goodman never played in The Open Championship or the PGA Championship.

Source for U.S. Open and U.S. Amateur: USGA Championship Database

Source for 1934 British Amateur: Reading Eagle, May 24, 1934, pg. 17.

Source for 1936 Masters: www.masters.com

Source for 1938 British Amateur: Time Magazine, June 6, 1938

LA = Low amateur
NYF = Tournament not yet founded
NT = No tournament
DNP = Did not play
CUT = missed the half-way cut
DNQ = Did not qualify for match play portion
R64, R32, R16, QF, SF = Round in which player lost in match play
"T" indicates a tie for a place
Green background for wins. Yellow background for top-10

U.S. national team appearances

Amateur

  • Walker Cup: 1934 (winners), 1936 (winners), 1938

[ Source: Wikipedia ]