Charlie Sifford

In spite of his significant role in breaking the racial barrier in the Professional Golf Association (PGA), Charlie Sifford said he wasn’t trying to make a historical statement, but simply wanted to play the game he loves. “I just wanted to play golf, you know?” he told Fox Sports. “That’s all there was to it.”

Sifford honed his golfing skills as a young caddy in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he practiced on the green after work. In 1952, Sifford received an invitation to play in the Phoenix Open after boxer Joe Louis passed on the invitation from the PGA. As an African-American in those days, he received much mistreatment during his career. Sifford’s career highlights include winning the UGA National Negro open five times prior to winning his first PGA Tour. He was the first black individual to get inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2004.

Charlie Sifford is found in...

10 Athletes That Changed Sports History
( 10 items )
Item Position (rank): 6