Brooks Koepka was a star in his Ryder Cup debut at Hazeltine last fall, going a remarkable 3-1-0 as a member of the first winning U.S. team since 2008, a squad that defeated Europe convincingly, 17-11.
The confidence gained from that pressure cooker of a week in Chaska, Minn., proved to be an invaluable experience for Koepka last week in Erin, Wis., where he claimed his first major championship -- the U.S. Open at Erin Hills -- in dominate fashion, topping his nearest pursuers by four strokes.
With that victory, Koepka grabbed ahold of the top spot in the latest 2018 U.S. Ryder Cup standings -- leaping from No. 5, previously -- supplanting his good buddy Dustin Johnson at No. 1.
Brian Harman had the biggest rise in the latest standings, going from No. 52 to No. 3 after a tie for second at Erin Hills.
Rickie Fowler (from No. 11 to No. 6) and Justin Thomas (No. 10 to No. 7) also moved in the right direction.
Of the current top 12, only five players -- Koepka, Johnson, Matt Kuchar, Fowler and Brandt Snedeker -- were on the 2016 team.
The next point-getting opportunity for 2017 comes in one month at the Open Championship.
The points process for the American team will conclude on August 12, 2018, following the 100th PGA Championship at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, with the top eight players on the points list securing spots on the U.S. Team.
Here is the current top 12 (and ties):
1. Brooks Koepka, 2,576.075
2. Dustin Johnson, 1,766.313
3. Brian Harman, 1,062.227
4. Bill Haas, 847.522
5. Matt Kuchar, 732.716
6. Rickie Fowler, 717.437
7. Justin Thomas, 582.942
8. Kevin Chappell, 542.337
9. Brendan Steele, 516.376
10. Brandt Snedeker, 510.111
11. Charley Hoffman, 474.309
12. Xander Schauffele, 420.334
The four remaining slots on the U.S. Team will be Captain's Selections. Three selections will be announced by Captain Furyk following the Dell Technologies Championship scheduled to be completed on September 3, 2018, and the final selection will be announced after the BMW Championship, which is slated to be completed on September 9, 2018.
Here's a look at the point-getting events and how the 12-player team will be picked:
2017 Major Championships:
- 1 Point per $1,000 earned (The Masters; U.S. Open; Open Championship; PGA Championship)
2017 WGC Events and The Players Championship:
- 1 point per $2,000 earned (WGC-Mexico Championship; WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Championship; The Players Championship; WGC-Bridgestone Invitational; WGC-HSBC Champions)
2018 Regular PGA Tour events:
- 1 point per $1,000 earned (Beginning January 1, 2018, through the PGA Championship, August 12, 2018; includes the Zurich Classic of New Orleans team event and WGC events)
2018 Opposite Field PGA TOUR events will NOT receive points
2018 Major Championships:
- 2 Points per $1,000 earned for the Winner; 1.5 Points per $1,000 earned for all others to make the cut (The Masters; U.S. Open; Open Championship; PGA Championship)