United States Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III has announced his picks for the 4 remaining spots on the team. It appears as if Love placed a high value on Ryder Cup experience, choosing Jim Furyk, Dustin Johnson and Steve Stricker – who have a total of 10 Ryder Cups between them. The last coach’s pick, however, was a Ryder Cup rookie, Brandt Snedeker.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I believed that Love would select Furyk, Snedeker, Johnson and Hunter Mahan. I wasn’t too far off, just missing the Stricker pick in favor of Mahan. Had Mahan put together 2 solid performances before the announcement, he would have had a much better possibility of being selected than Stricker. In the end, Love decided to go with the hot hand. In this week’s Deutsche Bank Championship, Stricker finished tied for 13th place at 8 under par, while Mahan came in tied for 39th at 3 under.
There was speculation as to whether Love would simply make his picks based solely upon the points standings, but that clearly was not the case. Despite being ranked 9th overall in Ryder Cup points (the top 8 automatically qualified), Mahan apparently did not fill Love with a great deal of confidence. Rickie Fowler, who was ranked 12th in points was also passed up. Stricker and Furyk were ranked 10th and 11th, respectively, while Snedeker was 13th and Johnson was all the way down in the 15th spot.
These 4 picks round out a fairly solid American team. The European side is equally talented, however. Both teams will be looking to come out of the gates hot and build up an early lead in the hopes of winning this prestigious tournament.