Move Over Gleneagles — Chatter About Hazeltine’s 2016 Captains Has Already Started

October 2, 2014

The Ryder Cup is just a mere five days gone, but players on both sides of the pond are already talking about 2016, and who they want at the helm to lead them there.

In all the drama surrounding U.S. team captain Tom Watson’s decisions, Phil Mickelson’s candid remarks about his captaincy and murmurs of unrest on the American side, the Yanks have already started throwing their support behind new captains.

Keegan Bradley is the latest American to campaign for the next captain. But unlike Mickelson, who's thrown 2008 captain Paul Azinger into consideration, Bradley's choice is Presidents Cup captain Fred Couples.

“If the PGA of America is listening, please, we need Fred Couples as a captain,” Bradley told SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio on Tuesday, which Couples was hosting. “We need Freddie. Freddie brings out the best in us. So if anybody at the PGA is listening, we need Freddie Boom Boom.”

Couples responded with laughter.

The Europeans, meanwhile, took all of a few days to celebrate their 16.5-11.5 win over the Americans at Gleneagles before talk of their future captain made headlines.

According to the Associated Press, Rory McIlroy said on Wednesday that he thought fellow Northern Irishman Darren Clarke would be “the perfect man to lead the team” to a win at Hazeltine in 2016. McIlroy seems to have an influence on popular opinion, having thrown his support behind 2014 captain Paul McGinley. Cigar-smoking, wine-swigging Miguel Angel Jimenez has also been mentioned.

McGinley, for his part, told the Guardian that his and Clarke’s strained relationship was “absolutely no problem whatsoever” with regard to McGinley’s input on the next European captain.

Paul McGinley, Darren Clarke

Getty Images
Former Ryder Cup teammates McGinley (L) and Clarke (R) were opponents for the 2014 captaincy.


“I’m going to be very professional in my input,” McGinley said. “I’m going to get opinions from a lot of players and a lot of people before I put my opinion forward as to what it will be.”

Will McGinley’s glory and Watson’s tumble be soon forgotten? With all of this talk, we might not need to wait another two years for the next Ryder Cup saga to start unfolding.

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