Born in Alameda, California, close to and the home of many prestigious golf courses, Bettencourt picked up the game at an early age. He lists Michael Jordan, Payne Stewart and his father as his heroes, and much of his upbringing in the game is due to the influence of his father. Bettencourt played successfully at Modesto Junior College in the Central Valley before hitting the professional tour.
Bettencourt turned professional in 2001 after graduating Modesto Junior College, and began playing successfully in his first year, though he would not earn any big wins until much later. Born in 1975, his first pro year was played when he was 26 years old and he compiled some top 10 finishes and high rankings from his debut on the Nationwide Tour until his first wins in 2008.
Bettencourt won his first professional events in 2008 on the Nationwide Tour. His first win came at the Oregon Classic in Junction City, Oregon, which preceded his next win by about a month and a half. His second win came at the Nationwide Tour Championship at TPC Craig Ranch in Charleston, South Carolina, where he earned a $450,000 purse.
Bettencourt's two quick wins at the end of the 2008 Nationwide Tour season moved him from 12th to 1st on the Nationwide money list. This big jump earned him his PGA Tour card for 2009. His highest placing in a PGA Tour major was tied for tenth at U.S. Open in 2009, played at Bethpage Black in New York.
Career Accomplishments and Stats
In his career up to August 2009, Matt Bettencourt has earned over $600,000 and has moved as high as 119th in the PGA Tour rankings. He has a driving distance of just over 290 yards and a driving accuracy of around 57%. He was 92nd on the money list, and Bettencourt has managed a high ranking in birdie average and par breakers on the PGA Tour.