A veteran of six Ryder Cups as a player, Davis Love III also served as an assistant captain to Corey Pavin in the 2010 Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor in Wales and was the Captain for the 2012 matches at Medinah Country Club in Medinah, Illinois. Love, the 1997 PGA Champion, is a 21-time winner on the PGA Tour. With his victory in the 2015 Wyndham Championship, Love became the third-oldest winner in PGA Tour history. With his 2016 Captaincy, Love becomes just the eighth man in history to serve a stint as U.S. Captain on more than one occasion.
Outside of Phil Mickelson, no player has made more starts in Ryder Cup play for the U.S. than Furyk. An astounding nine times, Furyk has teed it up for the red, white and blue, compiling a 10-20-4 record. Like Mickelson, this U.S. mainstay is sure to be a future captain. But before that happens, Furyk would love to be on the winning side as a player for a third time in his career. A 17-time PGA Tour winner through 2015, Furyk missed time in the 2015-16 season as he recovered from a wrist injury. He tied for second in the 2016 U.S. Open at Oakmont.
Lehman, a five-time winner on the PGA Tour and a nine-time winner on the PGA Tour Champions, was the winner of the 1996 Open Championship. In 2006, Lehman was the U.S. Captain at the K Club, which the American's lost 18 1/2- 9 1/2. Along with his abundance of Ryder Cup experience as a player on three occasions and as a past Captain, Davis Love III is hopeful that Lehman's ties as a native Minnesotan will pay dividends for the Americans with the home crowd at Hazeltine.
A 12-time winner on the PGA Tour, Steve Stricker has made three appearances for the U.S. in the Ryder Cup. Stricker's first Ryder Cup start came in 2008 at Valhalla, which also happens to be the last time the Americans won the biennial matches. Stricker continues to excel on the PGA Tour, even while playing an abbreviated schedule to spend more time at home with his family. He finished fourth in the 2016 Open Championship at Royal Troon, his second-best finish ever in a major, behind only his runner-up showing in the 1998 PGA Championship at Sahalee.
United States Ryder Cup Captain Davis Love III surprised many on Sept. 26 appointing Bubba Watson his fifth and final Vice Captain for the 2016 Ryder Cup, which will take place Sept. 30-Oct. 2 at Hazeltine National Golf Club. The 37-year-old Watson is a three-time Ryder Cup veteran (2010, ’12, and ’14) that played for Love during the 2012 Ryder Cup at Medinah, finishing 2-2-0. Watson has also represented the United States in the 2016 Summer Olympics and in two Presidents Cups (2011, ’15). This is Watson’s first stint as a Vice Captain. The two-time Masters Champion joins fellow United States Vice Captains Jim Furyk, Tom Lehman, Steve Stricker and Tiger Woods, each of whom was appointed by Love last year.
A winner of an incredible 79 events on the PGA Tour, including 14 major championships -- which is second-best all-time -- Woods is seemingly a lock to be a future Captain and gets his first crack as a Vice Captain under Davis Love III at Hazeltine. Woods has himself appeared in seven Ryder Cups, having missed out on a chance to compete in 2008 and 2014. In his seven starts as a player, Woods has been a member of the winning side just once. That was in 1999 when the U.S. completed a miracle come-from-behind final day victory at the Country Club in Brookline. Woods missed the entire 2015-16 PGA Tour season recovering from back surgery. His last top 10 came in his last start on the PGA Tour -- a T10 at the 2015 Wyndham Championship. There is no timetable for Woods' return to the PGA Tour.
A fan-favorite since turning professional in 2009, Fowler was known mostly for his flashy clothes. Over the last few years, however, his game has been just as flashy (see 2014, where he finished in the top 5 at all four majors). He has proven himself as a leader for the U.S. -- something his peers compliment him on often. He had eight top-10 finishes in 23 starts this season, highlighted by a runner-up finish in the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Fowler, along with Jordan Spieth, may just be this generation’s Tiger-Phil when it comes to regular U.S. Ryder Cup locks and leaders. Fowler was selected as a Captain's Pick by Davis Love III on Sept. 12.
The lone Ryder Cup start for Holmes was like a fairy tale. Playing at Valhalla in his home state of Kentucky, Holmes put together a 2-0-1 record as a member of the last winning U.S. team in 2008. Holmes is also a remarkable story. After brain surgery in 2011, he has won twice on the PGA Tour. Holmes collected a boatload of his points in 2016 with a T4 at the Masters and a third-place showing at the Open Championship (double points were available at the majors). He played well at the BMW Championship, earning a T4 and an invitation to the season-ending Tour Championship. Davis Love III selected Holmes as a Captain's Pick on Sept. 12.
A two-time Ryder Cup participant (2010, 2012), Johnson is hoping three times is a charm – as in his third Ryder Cup appearance yields his first time on the winning side. The long-hitting Johnson has a 4-3 record in seven Ryder Cup matches and is a perfect 2-0 in singles play. There’s no denying that Johnson -- the No. 2-ranked player in the world -- steps it up for the big events, evidenced by his first major championship victory earlier this summer at Oakmont in the U.S. Open, followed by a win in his next start at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. He also boasts two other World Golf Championships victories, as well as three wins in FedExCup Playoffs tournaments -- most recently at the BMW Championship earlier in September -- and 13 total top-10 finishes in majors dating back to 2009.
Johnson, 40, is a veteran of four Ryder Cups. He compiled a 6-6-2 record in those starts, but has yet to be a member of a winning U.S. team. Though far from the bomb and gouge game his younger teammates possess, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better “grinder” in golf than Johnson, which is a tremendous asset in the match-play format. He plays within himself, sticks to a game plan and makes few mistakes. Those attributes are what helped him to win the 2007 Masters and last year’s Open Championship at St. Andrews.
The Ryder Cup rookie muscled his way onto the team with a stretch of gutsy performances this summer. The big hitter nearly withdrew from the PGA Championship at Baltusrol with an injury but played on with a heavily-taped ankle and finished T4. He followed that up with a T9 the next week at the Travelers Championship. Prior to the season’s final major, Koepka finished in the top 10 four times in six starts after the Players Championship. His worst finish in that stretch was a T13 at the U.S. Open. The 26-year-old will be a welcome addition to the team. Many felt he was deserving of Captain's Pick consideration in 2014 after compiling a stellar season on the European Tour. That never came to fruition. Koepka was the lone rookie among the top-8 automatic American qualifiers.
One of the most consistently solid players on the PGA Tour – 76 top 10s from 2007-2016 – Kuchar will make his fourth start in a Ryder Cup this September. In three previous appearances, Kuchar has a 4-5-2 record. The seven-time PGA Tour winner is also hoping to be a member of a winning Ryder Cup team for the first time in his career. His strong suit is the four-balls format, where he has gone 2-1-2. Kuchar won the bronze medal in the Rio Olympics, the only American in men's golf to make the podium. Kuchar was selected by Davis Love III as a Captain's Pick on Sept. 12.
What can you say about Mickelson? No U.S. player has participated in more Ryder Cups than Lefty. This year's team marks his 11th straight showing in the biennial matches (16-19-6 over that time). Talk about longevity. Over that impressive stretch, however, Mickelson has only been a member of two winning teams (1999, 2008). When and if the U.S. gets this thing turned around, the five-time major winner will deserve a lot of the credit. Mickelson has worked hard the last few years to prepare younger players for the magnitude of the matches. He has shown them the ropes and provided that guidance that’s so important to players like Rickie Fowler, Keegan Bradley, Brandy Snedeker, and Dustin Johnson. Mickelson is also a lock to be a future captain. But for now – even at age 46 when the matches begin – Mickelson is still very much a competitor, as his thrilling dual with Henrik Stenson at the 2016 Open Championship proved.
Even though Ryan Moore wasn’t present at Davis Love’s invitational practice session for potential picks, there may be no hotter hand. Moore has four top-10 finishes in his last six starts, highlighted by his victory at the John Deere Classic and impressive finish at the Tour Championship where he battled Rory McIlroy for four pressure-packed playoff holes at East Lake. Moore's amateur match-play resume includes victories at a U.S. Amateur and two U.S. Public Links Amateurs.
Reed seems as though he was born for match play. In his rookie Ryder Cup appearance at Gleneagles in 2014, Reed was the U.S.’s best player, putting together an impressive 3-0-1 record while also endearing himself to U.S. fans by becoming a villain of sorts when he shushed the European crowds after holing a big putt. Reed proved at Gleneagles that he’s not scared – he actually thrives – on the grandest stage in the game. Reed's solid play has carried into 2016. He ended the regular season at No. 7 in the FedExCup standings with runner-up finishes at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions and the Valero Texas Open and immediately moved to No. 1 in the standings -- and No. 4 on the final Ryder Cup USA points list -- with a victory at the Barclays. It was the fifth win of his PGA Tour career.
Snedeker’s lone Ryder Cup appearance ended in heartbreak. He was a member of the 2012 team at Medinah that came up on the wrong end of a miracle final day for the Europeans. The loss stung Snedeker, who really wanted to win for Captain Davis Love III. Fantastic play early on in 2016 -- including top-3 finishes in three consecutive starts, highlighted by a Farmers Insurance Open win -- put Snedeker in a great position to make his second Ryder Cup squad (again, with Love as captain). Snedeker had two top-5 finishes in his final three regular season events to shoot back into the top 8. When the putter is on, there may be no better wielder of the short stick than Snedeker.
The No. 4-ranked player in the world, Spieth was one of the lone bright spots for the U.S. in an otherwise forgettable showing at Gleneagles in 2014, compiling an impressive rookie record of 2-0-1. Since then, Spieth has been a force on the world stage, winning two majors in 2015 – the Masters and U.S. Open – while finishing T4 in the Open Championship and second in the PGA Championship. He got off to a red-hot start when the calendar flipped to 2016 as well, winning the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. He was runner-up in the 2016 Masters and then won the Colonial shortly thereafter.
Walker was the No. 4 qualifier for the 2014 Ryder Cup in Gleneagles, Scotland, where he got his first taste of the biennial matches. Walker, who won the 2016 PGA Championship at Baltusrol for his first major triumph, compiled a 1-1-3 record in his Ryder Cup debut. He and Rickie Fowler were the only two U.S. players to compete in all five matches in the 2014 Ryder Cup. The duo were partners for the first four sessions, where they had three halved matches. Walker's 2 1/2 points in the 2014 Ryder Cup tied him with Jordan Spieth for second-most on the U.S. team, trailing only Patrick Reed's 3 1/2-point effort. All in all, Walker has been victorious six times on the PGA Tour, including an amazing stretch of three victories from October of 2013 to February of 2014.
A Ryder Cup legend who this year will captain the side for the first time. The finest moment of a distinguish career came in 2011 when he claimed his maiden major title at The 140th Open Championship, holding off Americans Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson to clinch a thrilling victory at Royal St Georges. The 14-time European Tour winner produced arguably his best Ryder Cup display in 2006 when he was unbeaten in his three matches as Europe won an emotional contest at the K Club. Was vice-captain in 2010 as Colin Montgomerie led the Europeans to victory at Celtic Manor and again at Medinah two years later. The 48 year old captained the successful European side at the 2016 EurAsia Cup, and his first experience of being a team captain should stand him in good stead when he heads to Hazeltine to lead Europe into battle.
Has never been on the losing side in the six Ryder Cup matches he has been involved in, three as a player and three as a vice-captain. The 45 year old has had an illustrious career on the European Tour winning 15 titles, with his first coming in 1996 at the Loch Lomond World Invitational and most recent at the 2014 Nedbank Golf Challenge. Made his Ryder cup debut in 1997, when he became the first Danish player to represent Europe and was also part of the winning teams in 2002 and 2014. He has plenty of leadership experience having captained continental Europe in the 2009 Seve Trophy as well as being a Ryder Cup vice-captain to Bernhard Langer (2004), Colin Montgomerie (2010) and José Maria Olazábal (2012). He will perform that role again at Hazeltine National.
The 45 year old played in six consecutive Ryder Cup teams from 1999 to 2010, being on the winning team on four occasions. A three time major champion, and the last player to defend a major title at The Open Championship in 2008 having been victorious 12 months earlier. The Irishman’s memorable 2008 continued when he secured his third Major at Oakland Hills Country Club, lifting the Wanamaker Trophy ahead of Sergio Garcia and Ben Curtis at the US PGA Championship. Harrington was a vice-captain to Paul McGinley in 2014 when Europe won The Ryder Cup at Gleneagles by 16.5-11.5 and will reprise that role at Hazeltine. He most recently won in 2015 with a play-off victory at the Honda Classic on the US PGA Tour, a tournament he won ten years previously.
The Scot is a vice-captain for the first time this year, having twice represented Europe in the Ryder Cup in 1999 and 2012. He won the 1999 Open Championship having been ten shots behind heading into the final round, when his closing 67 was enough to get him into a playoff with Justin Leonard and Jean Van de Velde, which he won by three shots. The 47 year old has the honour of having a European Tour event held in his name, the Aberdeen Asset Management Paul Lawrie Match Play, which was introduced in 2015 and staged again this year. Claimed three and a half points on his Ryder Cup debut in 1999 and played a major role in the 2012 win at Medinah, particularly in the singles where he defeated Brandt Snedeker 5&3 as Europe roared to a famous comeback.
The 40 year old is a match play specialist, with two of his 12 European Tour wins in match play events; the 2010 WGC- Accenture Match Play and the 2011 Volvo World Match Play Championship. His Ryder Cup record takes some beating, losing just four of the 18 matches he has taken part in and undefeated in the singles. His performance in 2012 at the Medinah Country Club will live long in the memory of European fans after he won all four of his ties as Europe produced a famous Ryder Cup comeback. In the Saturday afternoon four-ball matches Poulter and Rory McIlroy were two down with six to play before the Englishman produced a heroic finish with five consecutive birdies to earn the point that would give the team belief they could go on to retain the cup. Injury this time round means he takes on the role of vice captain for the first time.
A veteran of the European Tour, the Scot is tenth on the all-time list of European Tour victories with 21 while he also holds the record for number of appearances with 706. The 63 year old played in eight consecutive Ryder Cups from 1981- winning on three occasions - and holed the winning putt in 1985 at The Belfry. He returned to the same venue in 2002 when he led Europe to a comprehensive 15.5-12.5, the biggest victory since 1985 for a European Side. Hazeltine will be the third time he has been a vice-captain for the contest, his first was in 1999 at Brookline before returning to be a member of Paul McGinley’s backroom staff two years ago at Gleneagles.
One of the most consistent players on The European Tour in recent years, having only finished outside the top 60 in The Race to Dubai once in the last seven seasons, he claimed his second European Tour victory in 2012 at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, where he held off Rory McIlroy and Lee Westwood. He made his European Tour breakthrough at the 2009 Austrian Golf Open thanks to a stunning final-round 60. Claimed the Spanish National Championship every year from Under-seven to Under-18 level after taking the game up at the age of six and played in the victorious Junior Ryder Cup side of 1999. Grew up next to a golf course in the Canary Islands, and his sister Emma competes on the Ladies European Tour. Owns a house in Bali, where he loves to spend time surfing.
One of The European Tour’s rising stars, the affable Englishman already has two victories to his name, with the first coming in memorable circumstances on home soil at the 2015 British Masters supported by Sky Sports, where he won wire-to-wire in front of packed galleries at Woburn Golf Club. The 22 year old did not have to wait long before claiming a second European Tour victory at the Nordea Masters in June thanks to another dominant display. First came to prominence courtesy of a stellar amateur career in which he won the 2013 U.S. Amateur Championship as well as being the Number One ranked amateur for a total of 21 weeks.
A veteran of seven Ryder Cups, the Spaniard has won 20.5 points from those appearances. The 36 year old was unbeaten over the first two days at The K Club in 2006 – in the process, he became only the second player after Ian Woosnam to win all four points from his foursomes and fourball matches. Two years earlier, he became only the sixth player to claim four-and-a-half points out of a possible five in The Ryder Cup at Oakland Hills. He was one of Colin Montgomerie’s vice captains at Celtic Manor in 2010, when Europe won by a point. Garcia, who finished in the top five at both the 2016 US Open and The Open Championship, has won 11 times on the European Tour.
Played an important role in The 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles, where he won two points from four. Was Europe’s hero at The 2012 Ryder Cup, holing a six-foot putt on the last to defeat Steve Stricker and secure the point needed to complete a miraculous comeback and retain the Trophy. Made his debut in the biennial contest in 2010, the same year he won his first Major at the US PGA Championship. Rediscovered his best form in 2014 as a sensational wire-to-wire victory at the U.S. Open Championship brought him a second Major title.
Boasts an abundance of Ryder Cup pedigree, having played in every edition since 2010, winning eight points from his 14 matches in the process, with a highlight coming at Gleneagles in 2014, when the Northern Irishman beat Rickie Fowler 5&4 in the Sunday Singles. He won his first Major in 2011 at the US Open where he broke records aplenty after shooting 16 under par. He doubled his tally at the 2012 US PGA Championship, before winning his other two Majors in a memorable 2014 season, when he lifted the Claret Jug at Holyoke before winning the US PGA Championship for a second time. The Northern Irishman has three Race to Dubai titles to his name, in 2012, 2014 and 2015. He also won the tournament he hosts through his charitable foundation, the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, for this first time in May of this year thanks to a sensational closing eagle. He finished out the PGA Tour season with dominant performances in the FedEx Cup Playoffs, winning the Deutsche Bank Championship and the TOUR Championship to earn the FedEx Cup and its 10 million dollar bonus.
Finished the Ryder Cup qualifying period in style by finishing second in his defence of the D+D REAL Czech Masters and then winning the Made in Denmark tournament to claim his third European Tour title. Having impressed in his rookie season on the European Tour in 2014, won twice in consecutive appearances in 2015, first at the D+D REAL Czech Masters in August and then a fortnight later at the KLM Open. Long tipped as one of the stars of the future, he came through all three stages of the 2013 Qualifying School. Enjoyed a celebrated amateur college career in America, where he overcame Major Champion Jordan Spieth and former world amateur number one Patrick Cantlay to win the NCAA Division I Golf Championship in his sophomore year at the University of Illinois.
Played a leading role in The Ryder Cup at Gleneagles in 2014, when the Englishman formed a formidable partnership with Henrik Stenson over the first two days on the way to remaining undefeated and claiming four points out of a possible five, as Europe cruised to a 16 ½ – 11 ½ victory. Arguably the 35 year old’s finest Ryder Cup moment came in the “Miracle at Medinah” in 2012, when he secured a vital point in the Sunday Singles against Phil Mickelson. 2016 saw Rose become a history maker becoming golf's first Olympic Champion since 1904 with his two shot victory over Henrik Stenson in Rio. Made his Major Championship breakthrough winning the U.S. Open in 2013 at Merion Golf Club. Rose has won eight events on The European Tour, including the WGC Cadillac Championship in 2012.
The newly-crowned Champion Golfer of the Year has played in three Ryder Cups, and has been on the winning side in two of those appearances – latterly in 2014 and memorably on his debut in 2006, when he holed the winning putt at The K Club. His victory at the 2013 DP World Tour Championship, Dubai made him the first player to win both the Race to Dubai and the US PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup in the same season. The big Swede has won 11 European Tour titles, with two of those titles coming within the space of a month this year – firstly in Germany at the BMW International Open, before the 40 year old claimed the biggest victory of his career at the 145th Open Championship at Royal Troon, after coming through a titanic final day battle with Phil Mickelson. He broke the record for the lowest score at any Major both in relation to par (20 under par) and aggregate shots (264). His amazing 2016 continued when he claimed the silver medal in Rio at the Olympic Men's Golf Tournament.
Played a significant role in Europe’s victory in the EurAsia Cup earlier this year, when the Englishman had a perfect record after winning three out of three matches. Burst onto the scene in 2015 after winning three European Tour titles, including two triumphs in as many months in Johannesburg, before cruising to an impressive nine stroke victory in the Portugal Masters in October. Finished off a remarkable 2015 season by pushing McIlroy all the way at the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, before eventually finishing one shot behind the Northern Irishman. Turned professional in 2011 after representing Great Britain and Ireland in the Walker Cup at Royal Aberdeen.
Has played in every Ryder Cup since 1997, which is a testament to the Englishman’s longevity and quality. Westwood has won 23 points from those nine matches and has only been on the losing side twice. He was unbeaten in the 2004 and 2006 tournaments, and equalled Arnold Palmer’s record at Valhalla in 2008 when he made it 12 matches without defeat. The first of his 23 European Tour titles came at the Scandinavian Masters in 1996 – an event he has won three times. His most recent victory on The European Tour came in 2014 at the Maybank Malaysian Open, where he showed all his class to win by seven strokes.
This has been a year to remember for Willett, thanks largely to his sensational maiden Major Championship victory at The Masters in April, which was his second win of the season following the Omega Dubai Desert Classic title he picked up in February. The Englishman was part of Darren Clarke’s victorious European team at the EURASIA CUP back in January, when he contributed two out of a possible three points. The 28 year old pushed Rory McIlory all the way in the 2015 Race to Dubai before eventually finishing second in the rankings, after a superb season which included his wins in the Omega European Masters and the Nedbank Golf Challenge. His first European Tour win came at the 2012 BMW International. Before joining the professional ranks, he was a member of Great Britain and Ireland’s 2007 Walker Cup Team.
Claimed the biggest victory of his career in 2016, when he won the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth to continue his surge up the Official World Golf Ranking. His season had started positively at the EURASIA CUP in Malaysia, where the Englishman won two out of three matches to help the team to a comfortable victory. His breakthrough win on The European Tour was a spectacular one at the 2013 Commercial Bank Qatar Masters where he eagled the final hole to win by a single shot. His second title came at the Lyoness Open powered by Greenfinity in 2015. The 28 year old won the Silver Medal at The Open Championship in 2008, when he finished tied for fifth. At 6ft 6in, he matches Robert Karlsson and Thomas Pieters as the tallest players on Tour.