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Tiger, Phil to join U.S. Ryder Cup task force?

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The 2014 Ryder Cup was a collective disaster for the United States — a 16.5 to 11.5 rout by the Europeans. Phil Mickelson let the world know his feelings, and Tom Watson apologized for the error of his ways. We know the story, we acknowledged our mistakes — but what does this mean for 2016? How will the U.S. Team respond going forward?

The PGA of America is reportedly collecting a panel of players and ex-Captains to elect a captain for 2016 and develop a game plan for success — or at least avoid the atrocity that was the 2014 Ryder Cup.

“The decision has been made to assemble a task force that will include PGA of America representation, past captains and current players to really dive into an open analysis of all aspects of the Ryder Cup to see what we can do to improve and give Team USA its very best chances of success,’’ PGA of America CEO Pete Bevacqua told the New York Post.

Among those approached to join the task force, according to reports, have been Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Paul Azinger and Davis Love III. Azinger, who captained the 2008 U.S. squad to victory, wrote a book on his winning strategies, in which Mickelson publicly bought into.

Do you think the task force will work in 2016? If it were up to you, who would you recruit to be on the panel?

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Andrew Tursky is the Editor-in-Chief of GolfWRX. He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. ND Hickman

    Oct 13, 2014 at 4:43 am

    I love how Paul Azinger is suddenly the messiah yet he was facing off against the worst captain that Europe has ever had. Would he have beaten Monty, Seve, Jose Maria or Paul McGinley? I’m not convinced.

  2. snowman

    Oct 10, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    Tiger and Phil seem to care not-a-lot about the Ryder cup and their records are not that great. Task force!?…WTF? Maybe a new selection process/timing will help, but Pods and all that may/may not work depending on the time/place/players. The Euros: care more, have better chemistry, and better players (at least for now). Plenty of blame to go around, but I think the Americans are primarily a bunch of spoiled rich guys that just play for money and the Euros are spoiled rich guys that play for money and the Pure Joy of smoking the U.S. in the Ryder cup. That attitude along with the talent the Euros bring is tough for the U.S. to overcome and when U.S. loses, I’m not sure they really, really care for very long. They just some home and start cashing huge checks for placing T19th (not that there is any thing wrong with cashing huge checks)……

    • T

      Oct 12, 2014 at 10:51 am

      You watch, and buy into, to much Golf Channel propaganda.

  3. Robeli

    Oct 10, 2014 at 10:54 am

    “Big Break Ryder Cup 2016” – soon coming to The Golf Channel!!

  4. Joseph

    Oct 9, 2014 at 7:40 pm

    There is part of me that thinks the Americans simply don’t care enough. Something has to happen to fire up the US and get their heads back in the game. Getting their butts whipped certainly isn’t doing it.

  5. dot dot

    Oct 9, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    Glad they are taking it more seriously. Perhaps competition will come first and not the blatant commercialization like this year.

  6. steve

    Oct 9, 2014 at 5:57 pm

    The people that put Watson as captain feel stupid. Now they put this task force together. To little to late. Who cares?

    • Captain

      Oct 9, 2014 at 7:30 pm

      Too* little too* late. Who cares? WHO CARES!?! I think you’re on the wrong website friend.

      • steve

        Oct 10, 2014 at 8:03 am

        So they still have a chance to win? And no one cares about the Ryder Cup in the U.S.
        Right website, your a troll that adds nothing to the topic

        • T

          Oct 12, 2014 at 10:54 am

          Who’s the troll here?…You are. US has a chance to win every year, and a lot of golfers in the US care about the Ryder Cup.

  7. 8thehardway

    Oct 9, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Team America Task Force WILL mold disparate personalities into a tight-knit unit by 2016, such unit to be known as Ryder’s Rangers

    Basic Training
    In the months leading up to battle all RR recruits will undergo binge drinking with fellow recruits and memorize the sneers and dismissive gestures of James Bond movie villains.

    High Recruiting Standards
    Rich, arrogant pros need not apply.

  8. Brian

    Oct 9, 2014 at 10:31 am

    Let’s not overthink this thing at all…a task force? Now we need a task force to still get our butts kicked? The captain needs some pull over the PGA like the European captain has. The Euro captain has players paired together on Thurs/Friday rounds in regular tournaments to start building rapport and see how they do together. Where’s that here in the US? IMO, the players need more of a say in who plays with whom and when.

  9. gplfing

    Oct 9, 2014 at 4:51 am

    http://youtu.be/j7bnORHv2WE

    To beat the best, you must learn from the best.

  10. Jack

    Oct 9, 2014 at 2:28 am

    This is so stupid and so obvious… The US players have to play better — period. There now you don’t need a task force! Phil is a moron, btw.

    • Danny Patterson

      Oct 9, 2014 at 3:07 pm

      I agree. Also, why let these Ryder cuppers make these decisions? The best players from this Ryder cup were rookies. Phil, Tiger and Furyk, combined 39-56-13 career. Not very inspiring.

  11. Joe

    Oct 8, 2014 at 11:21 pm

    Let the top 10 players with points choice the next 3 players for the team. Then as a team they can pick who plays with who and who plays who.PGA of America chooses the assistant captains to do all the standard
    BS, speeches, outings, dinners etc. Just let the players figure out how to come together and bring back the cup. Yeah it sounds far fetched. I’ll even add make Payne Stewart the honorary captain. Win it for our country & Payne’s legacy.If Pic’s of Payne all over the place can’t get the team to come together and win it who can?

  12. Johnny

    Oct 8, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    I think everyone makes too big a deal of azinger as a captain. People seem to forget who the European captain was that year. Faldo was one of the worst captains, if not the worst captain, the Europeans have ever had. He couldn’t even remember who was all on his team.
    The bottom line is the Europeans want it more. You look at the European team this year and you could have paired any of them to play together. They get along. They’re a TEAM. The American team isn’t. Certain guys can only play with certain guys. I went to the ryder cup this year and the difference in the players attitudes was unreal. Quite honestly, bubba Watson was a disgrace. You could see by his body language he didn’t want to be there. I think his play in the opening days four balls highlighted this. Both he and simpson didn’t make one birdie between them. That’s terrible in that format. Surely the occasion should bring out the best in you. You’re playing for your country!
    It’s not the captain. It’s the players.

    • RobCH

      Oct 12, 2014 at 12:06 pm

      So if it’s not about the captain, the fact that it was Nick Faldo up against Azinger is completely irrelevant. Either the captain does make a difference, in which case they can logically be judged good or bad (or even, in your example, “worst”), or they don’t. You can’t have it both ways.

  13. roger

    Oct 8, 2014 at 5:58 pm

    I believe it is cupitas. The Euro’s have 2 years to think about and 2 years to enjoy the victory. The US loses it and now it’s on to the Presidents cup, the next season starts shortly after the Ryder cup and now they start to think about earning points to make the Presidents cup. I myself watched about 10 minutes of the Ryder cup this year. I love watching tournament golf on TV and watch all 4 rounds. The difference is the show is on the course all about the golf shots. The Ryder cup and Presidents cup, a lot of the show is in the crowd any more, crazy groups of people in crazy outfits. We have the Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup, Solhiem Cup and now they are talking about a Senoir’s Ryder Cup, that’s just way to much for me.

    • Forsbrand

      Oct 9, 2014 at 6:42 am

      Absolutely it’s gone far too corporate! Maybe the US are just not good enough to beat the Europeans. Why do the US need to set up a task force to win it! doesn’t that take something away from a possible victory? It s all a little wish washy for me.

  14. Ben

    Oct 8, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    I’m still trying to figure out why Larry Nelson and Mark OMeara haven’t been captains yet. Both are easy going guys with strong personalities. That seems to be the best combination for captaincy.

  15. Mark Littlejohn

    Oct 8, 2014 at 4:08 pm

    The Europeans consider it a major, the Americans consider it an exhibition…I honestly believe some would rather not be bothered to participate at all. They have complained before about the Ryder Cup one year, the President’s Cup the next. I’m reading Draw in the Dunes right now about the 1969 Ryder Cup and it’s amazing how little thought Captain Sam Snead seemed to put into it. One solution not talked about yet might be to reduce the automatic quals down to six and have six picks for players who effing want to be there. Where the hell do they get our guys for the World Cup…none of the top players play it. They must go down the list until they find two who agree to play.

    • RobCH

      Oct 12, 2014 at 12:11 pm

      Webb Simpson, who begged Watson to make him a captain’s pick, wanted to play. And how did he do?

  16. Jake

    Oct 8, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    I think we need to develop a system, sort of like USA basketball. There needs to be a US Director of Ryder Cup who’s job it is to pick the captain. I think we should get Paul Azinger back, signed on as captain for the next 2-3 Ryder Cups to set up the system. He should have a consistent stable of Vice Captains that he is grooming to be the next captain.

    We don’t need a panel to look at this, we just need to model it after already successful enterprises.

  17. Joel

    Oct 8, 2014 at 2:58 pm

    I love Tiger and Phil both…but they have played a lot of ryder cups spanning many different captains and styles of management and they don’t exactly have a stellar record. I love the ryder cup, but it belongs to the europeans…if we’re expected to win we lose, if we’re expected to lose we do. Just let things go people.

  18. Jim

    Oct 8, 2014 at 2:57 pm

    Glad to hear that the US might take the next Ryder Cup more seriously. What they need to understand is 1) competitive team spirit/ effort, and 2) how to motivate these rich, arrogant pro’s that really don’t care about the event as much as the Europeans. It’s not the captain but the players who can’t win a point in foursomes that’s the problem. And I heard that Phil flew over in his private jet so that speaks to his knowledge of team building. Geeez.

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5 things we learned on Sunday of the 2018 U.S. Open

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Opportunity knocked for so many golfers, yet it was the 2017 champion who seized the moment when it was his. Brooks Koepka fired his second sub-par round of the week on Sunday to separate from playing partner Dustin Johnson, and enter the pantheon of multiple major champions. He became the 7th player to defend his title, joining old-school legends like Willie Anderson and John McDermott, mid-century icons like Ralph Guldahl and Ben Hogan, and the last man to accomplish the feat, Curtis Strange. With that introduction, let’s move to the main event, the 5 things we learned on Sunday at Shinnecock Hills.

5) The USGA gave golf a chance

True to its word, the USGA pulled out all the stops in the wee hours of Sunday morn. The course set-up team ensured that enough water was distributed to putting surfaces, that worthy shots would not be punished. Hole locations were assessed and confirmed, also ensuring that multiple opportunities for success were available. As a result, 15 golfers turned in scores under par of 70, highlighted by Tommy Fleetwood’s 7-under stunner. Although many fans, writers and players were quick to assault the organizers for losing control of the course, the USGA reminded us that it always had control of the conditions at Shinny, and that its only mistake was to soar too close to the sun.

4) Captain America ran out of gas

If Patrick Reed had been able to sign his card on the 9th tee, when he stood 5-under on the day and 1-over for the tournament, he would be in a playoff with the eventual champion as I type. Unfortunate for this year’s Masters champion was that 10 holes remained. Reed promptly bogeyed the 9th, added 3 more bogeys on the inward half, and summoned just one birdie toward the end. His fourth-place finish was his best in a U.S. Open, but knowing that victory was in the cards will sting for a while.

3) DJ and Finau gave it a run

Where to begin? How about this: DJ had four bogeys on Sunday. He totaled that many on Thursday-Friday combined. He had birdies, too, but couldn’t find the game that possessed him over the opening 36 holes. Oddly enough, this type of experience won’t be a setback for the 2016 champion. After all, he came back from a career-killer in 2015, when he 3-whacked his way out of a playoff with Jordan Spieth at Chambers Bay. As for Milton Pouhau Finau, aka Tony, the Utah native had never before been in the final group on any day of a major professional championship. He acquitted himself well, standing even on the day and 3-over for T2 at the 18th tee. Knowing that he needed eagle for a playoff might have taken the final winds from his sails, and he limped home with double bogey and solo third. Looking ahead to the final August playing of the PGA Championship, Bellerive near St. Louis might just be his type of course.

2) Tom Terrific nearly made his own U.S. Open history

I’ll write this cautiously, as I’m certain I would have intimated in the 1980s and 90s that Colin Montgomerie and Lee Westwood would have been major champions by now. Tommy Fleetwood ought to win one of these things soon. His record-tying 63 was a short putt away from a record-breaking 62. Eight birdies against a single bogey was the stuff of legend, and if only he had trusted that final putt a bit higher on the break … that’s not fair. Fleetwood right now is the fellow to watch at Carnoustie next month. Bet a few quid or bob or whatever on the Southport native, as he should contend for the title.

1) Brooks cooks up a winning broth

It’s easy to look back and see all the great shots that the defending champion hit over the four days of the 2018 U.S. Open, shots that would win him his second consecutive trophy. Remember that 60-feet bomb to save par on Saturday? Shades of Costantino Rocca. How about the approach shots to within mere feet that earned him 5 birdies on Sunday, including a competition-killer on 16? Koepka was the guy we thought Dustin Johnson would be. Perhaps it was the time off for wrist rehabilitation early this season that gave him the burning desire to win. Out for nearly 4 months, Koepka had plenty of time to ponder what he achieved last June in Wisconsin, and what might lay ahead for him. The begged question is, does the most recent, two-time major winner have the game to acquire more of the game’s cherished trophies?

Related: Brooks Koepka’s Winning WITB from the 2018 U.S. Open

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Wednesday’s Photos from the 2018 U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills

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GolfWRX is live from the 2018 U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club (par 70; 7,440 yards) in Southhampton, New York. The U.S. Open returns to Shinnecock for the first time since 2004 when Retief Goosen won (he failed to qualify for the 2018 event).

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Phil Mickelson, who has two top-5 finishes at Shinnecock Hills, will seek to fill out his career Grand Slam with a win this week. Also, it’s Tiger Woods’ 10-year anniversary of winning the legendary 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines — that was his most recent major championship victory.

Also in the field are headliners Dustin Johnson (now ranked No. 1 in the Official World Golf Rankings), Justin Thomas (No. 2), Justin Rose (No. 3), Jon Rahm (No. 4) and Jordan Spieth (No. 5).

Brooks Koepka (No. 9) is the defending champion; he won last year by four shots for his first and only major so far in his career.

Check out our photos from Shinnecock Hills below!

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Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about the photos in our forums

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Spotted at Shinnecock: #RVLife, superb staff bags, stellar stampings

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We’re on the famed grounds of Shinnecock Hills Golf Club for the second major of the year. With the U.S. Open returned to such a visually and historically rich venue, it may be a bit tough to focus on equipment.

Nevertheless, we spotted some cool stuff, Tuesday, as the players move ever closer to the second major of th eyear.

Let’s get to the photos.

#RVLife propronent, Jason Day’s putter cover is incredible.

Michael Greller displays an essential caddie skill…

Face of Tiger’s wedge. Do these look like standard TaylorMade MG grooves to you?

Greatest side panel on a bag ever?

Who isn’t happy to see “Woods” on USGA tournament signage?

Shintaro Ban’s unique dot stamping is, well, money.

A look at the Bridgestone U.S. Open staff bag and headcovers.

Kenny Perry: Still gaming R7 irons.

Scott Gregory with some solid wedge stamping.

What is this lead taped and war torn beauty?

All our photos from Tuesday

Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about the photos in our forums

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