He was the originator, the progenitor.
In 1977, Al Geiberger became the first player to shoot 59 in PGA Tour play, a number that remains sanctified, hallowed ground, even at the game's highest levels after years of advancements with technology, global depth of talent and other game improvements.
Geiberger, who lives in California, heard on the radio Thursday that his fateful number had been matched at the John Deere Classic by Paul Goydos, the third man to shoot 589 since Geiberger did it.
For more than three decades, Geiberger has been called "Mr. 59," because he got to the elusive number first on a torrid day in Memphis.
“I went to the golf course to practice this morning and caught part of the report on ESPN Radio when I was pulling out of the parking lot," said Geiberger, now 72. "At first, I wasn’t sure what had happened until they mentioned Paul Goydos’ accomplishment today.
"My 59 had 11 birdies and an eagle and his round today was similar to mine. It really got going in the middle of the round and neither one of us had any tap-in birdies. I think my shortest putt was six feet and I chipped in for an eagle on my 10th hole.
"Like Paul, I remember knowing where I stood with three holes to play but if you are playing that well, you can handle it. I started off my round hitting the ball good and it got progressively better as the day went on. I felt like I was never going to hit another bad shot.
"When it's going like that, you have an inner strength that carries you through the pressure. I remember being so nervous near the end of the round but there was a inner feeling of 'so good.'
"I’d like to welcome Paul to the 59 Club. It’s starting to get a little crowded now. It just shows that you don’t have to be a long-ball hitter to shoot 59. Like me 33 years ago, it was the putter that got him over the line [Thursday].”
It's not crowded at all, really, at least on the three major tours. No player has ever cracked 60 on the European Tour and Annika Sorenstam remains the lone female to have achieved the feat in LPGA circles.