PGA Tour Confidential: Europe wins Ryder Cup with epic rally in Sunday singles
Every Sunday night, the editorial staff of the SI Golf Group conducts an e-mail roundtable. Check in every week for the unfiltered opinions of our writers and editors and join the conversation in the comments section below.
EUROPE STUNS U.S. AT MEDINAH
Mark Godich, senior editor, Sports Illustrated: Who saw that coming? Staring at a 10-6 deficit, Europe rallied for a stunning 14 ½ -13 ½ victory. This kind of comeback doesn't come around often, so let's get right to the point: Did the Europeans win the Ryder Cup, or did the U.S. hand it to them? No fence-sitting. Take a side.
John Garrity, contributing writer, Sports Illustrated: The U.S. handed it to them. Our guys played the 18th hole wretchedly, a total cock-up. It was hard to watch.
Jim Herre, managing editor, SI Golf Group: The U.S. thought it was over on Saturday night, just like the Euros did in '99. I'm not going to say the U.S. choked, but the Americans didn't seem to be playing with the same enthusiasm as they did on Friday and Saturday.
Godich: I said before the first tee shot was even struck that the U.S. body language suggested that this thing was over.
Cameron Morfit, senior writer, Golf Magazine: I'll say the Euros took it. Poulter was a joke, he was so good. Westwood said in the presser afterward that Europe has revised the qualifying criteria to nine qualifiers, two wild cards and Poults.
Alan Shipnuck, senior writer, Sports Illustrated: Europeans won it with some spectacular golf, which created a tsunami of momentum. The Americans will rue some loose shots and missed putts, but Europe seized this one with virtually flawless play.
Michael Bamberger, senior writer, Sports Illustrated: It's a Euro win. They played inspired golf. Just like the Americans did in '99.
Gary Van Sickle, senior writer, Sports Illustrated: When a guy hits a shank, nobody makes a putt when they've been making everything for two days, and you win only 3 of 12 matches, that's probably choking. Europeans still had to play well enough to pull it off, though.
Stephanie Wei, contributor, SI Golf+: Oh, the U.S. lost it. No excuses. The Americans were playing way better than the Europeans, and it's mind-boggling that they let that slip through their fingers. I had a bad feeling when I woke up this morning and saw a bunch of stories saying that Europe had no chance.
Jim Gorant, senior editor, Sports Illustrated: I'm on the "Euros won it" side. There were a bunch of crazy runs and incredible shots that made that win happen.
Charlie Hanger, executive editor, Golf.com: You can't give up that kind of a lead without a good percentage of the team falling apart, so I'd agree with Garrity. The Euros played inspired golf Sunday, but it was the Americans' to lose, and lose it they did.
Jeff Ritter, senior producer, Golf.com: A comeback of this magnitude can't happen without a little of both. But you'd have to say that, playing a home game, the U.S. really kicked this thing away by blowing so many Sunday matches on the final two holes. The veterans on the team -- Mickelson, Furyk and Stricker in particular -- all had a chance to win their matches. They must feel sick about this one.
Morfit: Three of the U.S. captain's picks just didn't pan out. Stricker, Furyk and Snedeker combined to win just a point.
Garrity: I would cut Mickelson some slack. Rose made about a hundred feet of putts on the last three holes, including that incredible birdie on 17 after Lefty's fantastic pitch. Rose's finish turned everything around.
Wei: We should give Phil a little bit of a break. That 40-foot bomb Rose made was unreal. Phil helped take the pressure off Rose a bit after he blew his approach on 18 over the green, but then Rose made another putt.
Godich: Phil didn't really do anything wrong, though he certainly needed to put that approach shot at 18 on the green. That opened the door for Rose.
Morfit: Of the eight Americans who lost on Sunday, Phil looked the least like a loser. Rose was amazing, almost as much as Poulter was Saturday night. A lot of crazy stuff happened. Musta been Seve.
Wei: Rose said right after the match that he felt like he was Poulter. Then he asked to be excused to give his mum a hug.
Garrity: Give Phil credit for his sportsmanship, as well. He gave Rose a big smile and a thumbs up for his birdie on 17, and he was totally gracious on 18 green. Phil gave it the real Jack Nicklaus treatment.
Hanger: Right. I was waiting for someone to get on him for not being intense enough, but I love that about Phil. He takes the matches seriously but understands that this is all a game, and he's not so competitive that he can't acknowledge something special from an opponent.
Morfit: He was also signing autographs and giving away trinkets after they lost. He was class all the way and played great.
David Dusek, deputy editor, Golf.com: John made a great point in the media center as we watched the action. Clearly no one on the U.S. team communicated to the matches behind them that 18 was playing short, and that the putt coming back down the hill didn't break. Everyone went long, and everyone missed the putt coming back on the left.
Garrity: I really don't know what happened there. You know my general contempt for the whole "cult of the captain" trend, but I've always conceded that captains -- or at least their co-captains -- can lose a Ryder Cup. That might have been the case here. Surely somebody was supposed to tell the later players how 18 was playing. The only guy to hit it pin-high there was Tiger, and by then it didn't matter.
Ryan Reiterman, senior producer, Golf.com: The U.S. handed it to them. You only need 4 ½ points on your home turf and you don't get it done? Major choke job.
Morfit: Lots of Americans playing not great, and lots of Euros playing well was the only way. The comeback did seem very doable even on Saturday night, though, after that Poulter run changed the momentum. I also thought the U.S. looked old Sunday, especially Furyk and Stricker. Furyk called this the low point of "a low year."
Dusek: The Europeans were fantastic, but the losses by Mickelson, Furyk and Webb Simpson were devastating to the United States. Win any of those matches, which were all lost on the last few holes, and the U.S. wins the Ryder Cup.
Morfit: Lots of blame to go around. Snedeker never looked right all week. Might've been a massive FedEx Cup hangover.
Tell us what you think in the comments section on Facebook: Did Europe win this Ryder Cup, or did the U.S. lose it?
THE KEY MATCH OR SHOT
Godich: Europe's fast start in the Sunday singles was obviously huge in the comeback, but the Cup was still there for the Americans' taking as the afternoon wore on. Identify the one match or shot on which the Ryder Cup turned.
Shipnuck: Rose stealing a point from Phil in the fourth match by taking the last 2 holes. Instead of being 2 down, Europe was even and the Cup was up for grabs.
Morfit: Rose's 40-foot birdie putt on 17 after Phil thought he'd made his chip. Phil said he thought he'd won the match right there. Total reversal.
Garrity: As I said before, I think it was Rose's putt on 17. If it doesn't go in, Phil is still 1 up and is guaranteed at least a half point. And it would have put an American flag up in Match 4, among all those blue flags.
Godich: That ball was motoring too. Rose might well have three-putted, meaning they would've never even seen the 18th tee.
Wei: Rose draining that bomb on 17. When the Europeans in the later matches saw all blue on the board, it turned the momentum. It completely changed the atmosphere, too.
Hanger: Rose's putt is what stands out as a single shot, but a huge early loss was Keegan Bradley falling to Rory McIlroy. Keegan had been playing like a man possessed, second only to Poulter, and Rory barely made it to the tee in time. When the U.S. lost that one, it seemed to spell trouble.
Godich: I'll go later and say Stricker's chip on 17. He has to get that ball to kick-in range, especially with Kaymer staring at a five-footer. No excuse to make bogey there.
Hanger: Ironic that the guy on the team for his putting (and Tiger counseling) showed such nerves on the greens at the end. Poor guy.
Morfit: Stricker, unfortunately, looked all of his 45 years at this Cup.
Garrity: I'd also nominate Webb Simpson's bogey on 17. He hadn't trailed Poulter all day, but you can't give Ian life in a Ryder Cup match. Very costly.
Gorant: Bubba's adrenalin shot on the first tee. As soon as that happened our esteemed colleague Mark Godich came into my office and said, "uh oh." He was right.
Morfit: A lot of weird things happened in this Ryder Cup, including the Americans' dominating in the team play but getting crushed in the singles. Not how it used to happen, but then America always used to have the stronger team.
Garrity: And how weird was this? It came down to the last two matches, and those four players hadn't scored a single point before Sunday. Who was the casting director?
Herre: As the esteemed Paul Mahoney put it, it came down to "your do-dos versus our do-dos." The Brits have such a way with words.
Dusek: Rose's putt on 17 was huge, but Webb Simpson's inability to hold was really big too. He talked so much with his caddie before and after every shot that he reminded me of tennis players who constantly look at their coaches and friends seated courtside for approval.
Van Sickle: Rose's putt on 17 is the obvious choice. But I'll go deeper and say I didn't think Bubba Watson was the guy to send out first. As soon as he got matched against Donald, I figured that for one point for Europe. You need to send out your best, steeliest guy, your surest thing, to get that first point. Love sent erratic, ephemeral, enigmatic Bubba? Spraying it all over? I didn't get that. I'd have gone with Phil or Keegan or Dufner. But overall, I'd say the Americans made so few birdies that the ultimate order of play didn't make that much difference.
Morfit: I agree. At no time did I see Bubba winning that match. It just seemed so unlikely, especially in light of him losing to the Mechanic in singles in 2010. Donald is a bit more to handle than Miguel Angel Jimenez.
Godich: So who would you have sent out first. I've heard Bradley and Dufner, among others. Are you really going to put a rookie in that spot?
Morfit: I'd have maybe sent out Zach first. He's a pretty steely dude, and if he loses you know he's going to at least make it close.
Herre: Dufner, yes. Bradley, no. Playing on emotion is hard to sustain. I agree with Vans on Bubba. The rah-rah guys can go south in a hurry. Bradley was a star for two days, and just another player on Sunday. You want to be more like Fred Couples, no apparent highs or lows. Dufner has that quality.
Gorant: If you believe in your picks, go Furyk to start. Good match with Donald.
Shipnuck: Zach. You need a fighter. And someone who can save shots around the green. Sounds like Luke, no?
Tell us what you think in the comments section on Facebook: What was the key moment that decided the outcome of the Cup?
KEEGAN AND PHIL
Godich: Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley were the U.S.'s most dynamic duo, storming to victory in their first three matches. Love chose to sit the pair for the Saturday afternoon matches, and Phil said he had no problem with the decision, saying the rest would be good and that it didn't make sense to risk two points on Sunday to pick up one on Saturday. It sounded brilliant at the time, but now I'm not so sure, especially when you consider that Phil and Keegan both lost on Sunday. Phil came to Love's defense on Sunday night, saying the plan all along was to sit. What do you say?
Shipnuck: Love's the captain, not Phil. He should have told Phil on the 10th hole to man-up and get ready to play again. Saturday afternoon changed everything, and the U.S.'s most dynamic duo was twiddling their thumbs.
Van Sickle: The resting bit was a lame excuse. Phil and Keegan played all of 12 holes, alternate shot. So they each played the equivalent of six holes worth of shots. They needed to rest after that? I'm not buying. The captain needed to adjust his "plan."
Godich: I'm with you guys. The message before play started on Saturday should have been that while the intention was to rest everybody for a match, Phil and Keegan might be needed in the afternoon.
Morfit: I didn't understand the reluctance to split up Tiger-Stricker, and Phil-Keegan. It might have helped both Tiger and whoever he was paired with to put him with another player after he and Stricker proved they'd come to the end of the line Friday. And Keegan would have helped whoever he was paired with Saturday afternoon.
Van Sickle: You get the points when you can, strike while the iron's hot. Phil and Keegan lost their Sunday matches, anyway -- they could've done that tired. At the very least, I would've sent Bradley back out on Saturday afternoon with Tiger and sat Stricker, who wasn't lighting it up. Ideally, send them both out. Just like Ollie had to be kicking himself for benching Poulter AND Donald on Friday afternoon. Every point matters.
Herre: Hard to second-guess Love on this. He said going in that he was going to sit guys. Kind of got him off the hook with Woods. Mickelson played pretty well on Sunday. Rose was simply out of his mind. He was the last Euro I would've guessed would kill the U.S. with his putter. Bradley, the guy with all the energy, was the one who was all over the place on Sunday.
Garrity: At the time, I thought it was a good move on Davis's part, so I can hardly second-guess him now. I doubt that Keegan and Phil could have sustained that level of play for a fourth straight session, and it was good to have them fresh for Sunday -- Phil because of his age, Keegan because of his brain-sapping intensity.
Hanger: It's the same old story. If it works, Love's a genius. If it doesn't, he blew it. Nobody knows what the "right" move was.
Dusek: I have no problem with Love's decision to sit Keegan and Phil. If Rose doesn't putt out of his head, Phil wins and maybe the U.S. wins. Everyone rested at least one session, so I assume it was planned all along. If Phil and Keegan had lost Saturday afternoon the question would have been, "Why not rest the 42-year-old Phil?"
Wei: I thought it made sense at the time, and I will stand by that. It was exhausting watching their reactions and celebrations. Coming down from the adrenaline rush probably took everything out of them -- at least Phil. I never thought he was going to play all five matches, so I wasn't in the least surprised. I don't think the dynamic duo could have sustained that same intensity for the afternoon.
Morfit: Speaking of celebrations, you know how baseball players will sometimes choreograph their high-fives? That should be a prerequisite for all Ryder Cup players when they're getting fitted for their uniforms. Colsaerts and Garcia were such a mess trying to celebrate their birdie on 16 Saturday that it was hard to watch, and Colsaerts, no doubt still reeling, promptly rinsed his tee shot on 17 to lose the match. Let's decide right now: Are we doing the knuckle-bumps today or the high-fives? These things are important.
Wei: You mean their rock-paper-scissors exchange? Completely! Keegan and Phil had some awkward ones, too. The butt-patting and chest-bumping and near-missed high-fives. Obviously they had a ton of good ones. I thought they were going to make out a few times.
Godich: Not to open a can of worms, but is Phil's telling Davis not to play him and Keegan in the afternoon any different from Chris Riley asking to sit at the 2004 Ryder Cup?
Herre: Did Phil actually "tell him"? Also, Riley was 20 years younger than Phil, and had not played a kazillion Ryder and Presidents Cup matches. Frankly, I thought the Duf should've been sent out on Friday afternoon. Davis might have been a little bit too committed to his four-match-only policy in Dufner's case.
Godich: Phil said he told Davis on the 10th tee to not even think about sending them back out, said they had put all of their energy into the morning match because they knew they weren't going to play in the afternoon.
Shipnuck: Riley wasn't 42 and hadn't already played three matches. But he also wasn't unbeatable.
Van Sickle: Again, Phil hit only six holes worth of shots Saturday morning. Not that much stress.
Morfit: It's different from Riley because only one of them is 42 and has chronic arthritis and is a Hall of Famer. Otherwise, the same.
Garrity: Also, Phil spoke up to defend his captain, whereas Riley's captain, Hal Sutton, used Riley as a scapegoat. That was one of the low points in Ryder Cup history.
Shipnuck: Also, sitting Phil didn't mean Keegan had to sit. He could've helped Tiger a hell of a lot more than Stricker did.
Wei: Agreed, but I feel like handbags would have been thrown had DL3 paired Keegan with someone else.
Morfit: There seemed to be this unspoken assumption that Tiger-Stricker and Phil-Keegan were Siamese twins. Part of being an effective leader is making good decisions in real time, as the situation changes. For whatever reason, Love was reluctant to break up a big losing team and a big winning team.
Tell us what you think in the comments section on Facebook: Should Love have played Mickelson and Bradley one more time Saturday afternoon? Or was sitting them for one session the right move?
Godich: Let's be honest. The Ryder Cup was pretty much without suspense midway through the Saturday afternoon four-ball session. The U.S. was leading comfortably and the only question was how much the margin would be when the sun set. But that's when the comeback truly began, as the Euros turned what could have been a 4-0 whitewash into a 2-2 draw. I would argue that the last 60 to 90 minutes of that four-ball play were as good as it gets in the Ryder Cup. What was your most memorable moment from that stretch?
Morfit: This week was the first time I'd heard Rory actually scream in the manner of Poulter and some of the other European Ryder Cup legends. It was almost like Rory and Keegan were trying to out-scream each other there for a while.
Shipnuck: Standing on the edge of the 18th green in the twilight waiting for Tiger's putt. There were 20,000 or 25,000 fans there, and both teams. My heart was pounding, and I'm an impartial observer.
Wei: The moment that stands out most was Dustin Johnson draining the birdie putt on 17. My ears are still ringing from the crowd reaction. Also, Rory McIlroy draining a 15-footer for birdie on 13 to get things going. In person, you could sense the momentum changing. It was the only time I saw Rory make a putt all week, and also the first time I saw some fire in him since Friday morning. It was a good sign of things to come.
Morfit: Poulter going on that five-birdie run to close reminded me of Tiger circa 2000, in microcosm, obviously. You knew he was going to do something crazy, but that crazy?
Hanger: Rory McIlroy's reaction to Poulter's man-possessed play and demeanor. It was pretty cool to see the world's best player standing aside and shaking his head at what he was seeing, just like the rest of us.
Dusek: Ian Poulter's reactions to holing all those putts, and Rory's reaction to Poulter's incredible run. Priceless.
Garrity: Too easy. Poulter's five-birdie finish with all the eye-popping facial gymnastics.
Godich: I said one moment. You gave me five, John.
Garrity: Time moves quickly when you're 65.
Tell us what you think in the comments section on Facebook: What's your memorable moment from this Ryder Cup?
BRING THE NOISE
Godich: Bubba Watson got the crowd going at the first tee all three days, hitting his tee shot while the fans roared. Folks seem to be pretty much divided on this one. Did you like it? And is there a place for it in golf?
Hanger: There is a place for it in events like this, if the players are asking for it and it's all in good fun. When Poulter and Bubba both teed off to cheers on Friday, it was about as fun a moment as I've ever seen at a golf tournament. Totally loved it. That said, we won't see it again until the next Ryder Cup, if then.
Morfit: I have no problem with it if it's confined to the first tee of the Ryder Cup. Why not? It's sort of fun and everybody has to deal with it. McDowell said it was worse when all he heard was deafening silence.
Hanger: That's an interesting point from GMac. What better way to shake that first tee, oh-my-god-everybody's-staring-at-me feeling than to embrace the moment and have them cheer a little?
Herre: I liked it - something different, something oddly appropriate only in the Ryder Cup and only if the player asks the fans to cheer.
Garrity: I think it's fine, if you're goading the fans to make a racket while you hit, but totally unacceptable if you rile them up for an opponent's shot. And, of course, I despise those idiot fans who yell silly stuff at impact.
Shipnuck: It was great here but would be forced at the GHO. Once every couple of years is about right.
Ritter: Loved it. Would also be good to see it at Presidents Cups.
Dusek: Do I like it? Yes. Do I think it helped Bubba? Maybe (he missed the fairway Sunday). In such a pressure-filled environment, do you want to break from your routine? I don't think it would be a good idea week-to-week because, frankly, a lot of first tees are pretty lame.
Reiterman: It was only on the first tee, and it got the home crowd going, so why not? Loved it.
Van Sickle: Golf needs to be more fun and lose a little of its stodgy reputation. I thought it was great. Except by Sunday, it was a snowball that turned into an avalanche. It was all about getting the crowd cheering and less about hitting the fairway. It was great when Poulter matched him on Saturday. If there's a place in golf for this, though, I don't know where it is other than the Phoenix Open.
Wei: I thought it was awesome. Constant noise isn't the problem. It's the abrupt interruption (like a camera click or clueless marshal yelling quiet please) that throws them off.
Gorant: No problem with the first tee thing, but there was a little more cheering for bad shots by the Euros than I would have liked.
Wei: Exactly. I was embarrassed as an American. It was horrendous.
Hanger: Oh come on. If you're watching a football game, you cheer when the other team fumbles or drops a pass. If you're rooting for your team, it's only natural to cheer when something goes their way, and that includes things going badly for the other guys. Happens in Europe too.
Shipnuck: You had to be out there. The crowds were really obnoxious. A little spontaneous cheering when the visiting side makes a miscue is fine, and it does happen in Europe. Here it was more like jeering. And when the European crowds make comments to the American players, they tend to be clever and with a bit of a wink. At Medinah, the yahoo factor was pretty high.
Wei: The amount Sergio was harassed with stupid comments made me hope he'd win his matches.
Hanger: OK, that does sound bad. I rescind my "Oh come on" but still think it's fine to cheer a little for bad shots.
Shipnuck: Sure, it's spontaneous and the fans are excited about what might come next. There was some of that, too.
Tell us what you think in the comments section on Facebook: What's your take on crowds cheering during shots on the first tee? Should it happen at more events?
HITS AND MISSES
Godich: Which player was your most pleasant surprise? And the most disappointing?
Herre: Love the Duf, and have to admit I was wrong about D.J. -- he made a bunch of putts while going 3-0. Sad to see Stricker go out like this (I'm sure this will be his last Ryder Cup).
Shipnuck: Kaymer, obviously. Back from the dead! Tiger was the dud of all duds.
Hanger: I didn't think Dustin Johnson would come out of this 3-0, and I didn't think Tiger would be 0-3-1. Woods ran into a buzzsaw on Saturday, but still, that was disappointing.
Wei: Kaymer, and I loved Colsaerts. Most disappointing: I hate to say this because he's such a great guy, but Steve Stricker.
Dusek: I knew Jason Dufner was going to be a stud, so that was not a surprise. I'll take Justin Rose as the most pleasant surprise and Steve Stricker as the biggest disappointment.
Garrity: Keegan Bradley exceeded my expectations -- he made Phil look like a kid again! But Tiger had to be the most disappointing. He was unlucky in a couple of matches, but come on, he couldn't beat Molinari when Molinari made five bogeys! And then he threw away the tie! Terrible.
Shipnuck: And you could make the argument that seeing Tiger's getting off to a fast start would have given his team a lift. Instead he was two down at the blink of an eye.
Van Sickle: Colsaerts was awesome. He was a barely a rumor in the States before this. He hits it long and high and all those putts he made -- redonkulous. Most disappointing probably has to be Tiger. He is the No. 2 player in the world, and though he had flashes, you've got to win at least one match out of four.
Reiterman: The winning point came from Martin Kaymer. No one saw that coming. Woods-Stricker have to share the blame, especially Stricker. Woods played well for stretches but only had ½ point to show for it.
Morfit: Woods actually played better than pretty well. Love said in the presser that according to his and his assistants' calculations, he'd have been leading the tournament through the first two days if it had been stroke play. (Not that that will help ease the sting, but still.)
Shipnuck: It ain't stroke play. Match play is all about the moment, and Tiger couldn't get it done twice on 18. Also, in a team event, interpersonal dynamics are key, and his brooding presence is a buzz-kill for the crowd and his teammates.
Godich: How about Rory going from the parking lot to the first tee and playing golf like that? That is a process we can all admire.
Garrity: That was beautiful. Every golfer's nightmare, and he went right out and threw three early birdies at Bradley. That's two more birdies than Tiger made all day, and Rory still had oatmeal on his chin.
Van Sickle: Tiger calls it cold-shafting. Most of us do it all the time. It's a little easier at 23 when your body is still a rubber band instead of a Jenga puzzle.
Hanger: The Golf.com staff was dubious of Rory's story, and the more I think about it, I am too. He'd been in Chicago for days, and he has teammates and a captain and a caddie and probably an entourage in tow. How does he not get the right match time?
Shipnuck: The Hangover 3: Rory's Lost Hour.
Godich: Plus, even if he had the time right, when exactly was he planning to get to the golf course?
Hanger: Right. He said he usually just takes about 40 minutes to warm up, but with the traffic issues in Chicago I heard about from you all, it still seems fishy.
Van Sickle: Rory was late getting to the course even if he really did think his time was an hour later. No excuse.
Garrity: So you're saying it wasn't oatmeal?
Hanger: He didn't look like he'd had a late night. I think he was probably shopping for Ferraris or something and just lost track of time.
Tell us what you think in the comments section on Facebook: Who was your biggest surprise and disappointment at Medinah?
WHO WILL CAPTAIN THE NEXT ONE?
Godich: Finally, who captains the respective squads when the Ryder Cup heads to Gleneagles in Scotland in 2014? And who wins?
Shipnuck: David Toms and Paul McGinley. Europe wins. Europe has a young team and won't lose anyone important while this aging U.S. squad is going to get a full makeover. Actually, that's probably a good thing.
Hanger: Phil's the playing captain, he rooms with Keegan Bradley, and the Americans get routed.
Herre: I'll go with Phil as a playing captain for the U.S. and either Darren Clarke or Paul McGinley for the Euros.
Reiterman: David Toms and Darren Clarke. Europe wins big.
Van Sickle: It had figured it to be David Toms, but I hear Fred Couples is now in the running, and backed by Davis. Fred would be a good fit for an away game. The Euros? Pick any one of their assistant captains. They'd all be good. Does it really matter whether it's Bjorn or McGinley or Jimenez? What I'd like to see, not that it's relevant, is Zinger vs. Monty. That'd be great fun!
Dusek: Toms has won the proper major to be considered for captaincy, the PGA Championship, so I like that pick. Darren Clarke also seems like a logical choice. I'm not quite ready to concede the match to the Europeans because I think the U.S. has plenty of young talent as well.
Ritter: Toms and McGinley are the favorites, but maybe five losses in six Cups will force the U.S. to get creative and try Phil as a playing captain. Either way, it's hard to imagine the U.S. winning in Scotland, but a lot can (and will) change in two years.
Morfit: Think how much has changed on the American team in just the last 14 months. Keegan? Dufner? Snedeker? That's the big upside for the Americans. Their Ryder Cup outlook, despite a loss today, looks considerably rosier than it did in the bad old days of 2004 and '06.
Wei: Yeah, good point. This was my first Ryder Cup, but this American team felt like a "team," even more so than the Europeans, to be honest.
Godich: Good point, Cam. Others like Mahan, Rickie Fowler and Nick Watney will be hungry. I'll say it: U.S. in an upset.
Morfit: I like it. I'll second that. Loads of talent flooding in for the Americans right now. Name to watch: Luke Guthrie. Guy could be the next Keegan. Just sayin'.
Tell us what you think in the comments section on Facebook: Who will be the next captains? Who wins?