Phil Mickelson admits he 'crossed the line' in becoming a gambling addict

Golfer Phil Mickelson says he won't be betting on football games this season as he addresses his gambling addiction and attempts to get "back on track to being the person I want to be.”

In a lengthy social media post Monday, the six-time major champion admitted that his gambling habits got out of control as he "crossed the line of moderation and into addiction."

As a result, he said he shut out his friends and family members, comparing the situation to being inside a shelter while a hurricane was hitting. "When I came out there was so much damage to clean up that I just wanted to go back inside and not deal with it," Mickelson wrote.

Mickelson's public admission of his gambling addiction comes a month after professional gambler Billy Walters alleged in a new book that Mickelson wagered more than $1 billion on different sports over the last three decades and racked up more than $100 million in losses.

Mickelson, who has over $100 million in career earnings during his 30-plus years as a pro golfer, in addition to an estimated seven times more in endorsements and other businesses, says his financial security "was never threatened" by his gambling, but he "was so distracted I wasn’t able to be present with the ones I love and caused a lot of harm."

Phil Mickelson looks down the fairway from the first tee during the final round of the LIV Golf Bedminster golf tournament in August.
Phil Mickelson looks down the fairway from the first tee during the final round of the LIV Golf Bedminster golf tournament in August.

Mickelson, 53, credited his wife Amy for standing by him in his attempts to get his life back on track.

He concluded with a word of advice to would-be gamblers this football season: "In my experience, the moments with the ones you love will be far more remembered than any bet you win or fantasy league triumph."

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Phil Mickelson vows to get 'back on track,' not bet on football games