Masters champion Patrick Reed was told in his Saturday news conference how easy it is to find social media bashing him, specifically on Twitter.
The question ended with: “Why are there fans that don’t embrace you?”
“I don’t know,” Reed said. “Why don’t you ask them?”
The 27-year-old Reed, a former All-American at Augusta State University, had a whirlwind of noise concerning his personal life and his passion on the course. But he drowned out the noise Sunday with a final-round 71 to clinch the green jacket.
He led Augusta State to a pair of NCAA national golf titles in 2010-11, then two years ago earned the nickname “Captain America” during his back-and-forth Ryder Cup match win over Rory McIlroy at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Minnesota.
Reed’s personal life has undergone much scrutiny. His relationship with his parents and sister and how he got along with his teammates at Augusta State have been discussed plenty.
Reed was asked Sunday during the champion's session with the media if the win was bittersweet without his parents and sister around to celebrate.
"I mean, I'm just out here to play golf and try to win golf tournaments," Reed said.
Those following Reed on Sunday disagreed with Twitter and had nothing but praise.
Those a few holes away from Reed agreed with the popular opinion on social media.
“He’s just arrogant and needs to get over himself,” said 38-year-old Elaine Cook of Atlanta. “I’m not a fan in the least. I’m a (Jordan) Spieth fan.”
Cook was in the minority Sunday.
“Seriously, the Ryder Cup. Captain America,” said Ken Pulcini, 58, of Bethlehem, Pa. “I didn’t understand it here. We sat on 15 and they gave Spieth gigantic applause. They gave Reed a little applause. How can you not stand up for him? Spieth is a cry baby, let’s be honest.”
Pulcini was with his 18-year-old son, Matt, who agreed with his dad.
“This is a great event,” Matt said. “But Reed deserved better from the fans.”
Joe Toubia, 35, of Austin, Texas, didn’t know a thing about Reed’s personal life and doesn’t care. He likes what he sees when Reed plays golf.
“He’s playing so well that’s why I like him and his athleticism,” Toubia said. “I didn’t know anything about his personal life. It’s just more of me being a golf fan.”
Mike and Joan Smith of Chandler, Ariz., said they love watching Reed and became a fan when he won the showdown vs. McIlroy at Hazeltine.
“I like Rory OK, but Northern Ireland isn’t in America,” Joe Smith said with a laugh. “With Patrick Reed I just like his attitude when he plays. I liked his attitude at the Ryder Cup. I like his attitude now. He got my attention initially when he said he was one of the five best players in the world and I had never heard of him.”
Joan Smith, 64, said Reed plays the game like she wants her pro golfers to conduct themselves.
“He seems like a really nice, quiet guy,” Joan Smith said. “Out here he’s not a showboat. He’s just playing.”
One of Joe Smith’s several reasons to like Reed is one that many who enjoy a beer, or three, can relate to.
“All the rest of these guys out here have personal trainers and nutritionists,” Joe Smith said. “Patrick Reed is like one of us. He’s got a little belly. It looks like he would have a beer after a round.”