Mickelson ruffled by Aussie teen’s story of wager on practice round

Ryan Ruffels hit his first shot as a pro on the PGA Tour on Thursday in the Farmers Insurance Open, courtesy of a sponsor’s exemption.

The 17-year-old Aussie phenom, however, has already ruffled Phil Mickelson.

As the story goes, Mickelson in his role as an acting golf coach for Arizona State, offered to play a round with Ruffels, a prime recruit.

Via the Sydney Morning Herald:

"We get on the first tee, it’s pretty early in the morning and he says, ‘I don’t wake up this early to play for any less than $2500’," Ruffels recalled of a friendly offer made to him by Mickelson. The 42-time US PGA Tour winner gave Ruffels 2-1 odds; if Ruffels won, Mickelson would give him $5,000, if he lost, Ruffels would have to pay up $2,500 when he turned professional. "I was a few down through nine but then I birdied six of my last seven to win by one shot and took his money, so that was pretty cool," Ruffels said with a laugh.  

"We get on the first tee, it’s pretty early in the morning and he says, ‘I don’t wake up this early to play for any less than $2500’," Ruffels recalled of a friendly offer made to him by Mickelson.

The 42-time US PGA Tour winner gave Ruffels 2-1 odds; if Ruffels won, Mickelson would give him $5,000, if he lost, Ruffels would have to pay up $2,500 when he turned professional.

"I was a few down through nine but then I birdied six of my last seven to win by one shot and took his money, so that was pretty cool," Ruffels said with a laugh.

Fast forward to Wednesday before the San Diego Open, per The AP.

Mickelson was asked after his pro-am round about his relationship with Ruffels and began, "Well, that’s an interesting one. I met him a month ago, and we played for the first time. He’s young, and he’s got some things to learn. One of them is you don’t discuss certain things. You don’t discuss specifics of what you play for. And you certainly don’t embellish and create a false amount just for your own benefit. "So those things right there are … that’s high school stuff," Mickelson said. "And he’s going to have to stop doing that now that he’s out on the PGA Tour."

"So those things right there are … that’s high school stuff," Mickelson said. "And he’s going to have to stop doing that now that he’s out on the PGA Tour."

The reaction from the golf legend seemed to have Ruffels looking for a mulligan.

He posted some comments on the Golf Channel’s social media accounts, stating the report contained “damaging inaccuracies” and that the wager amount had been “exaggerated out of proportion.” 

The New York Post put the squabble in perpective as it only can, saying Mickelson hates the "punk-ass" kid.