Is it too early to talk about the Ryder Cup? Of course not. It’s never too early to talk about the Ryder Cup.
Tom Watson, the U.S. captain, talked all about it Tuesday when he made the announcement from the Northern Trust Open that Raymond Floyd has been named as the second U.S. assistant captain. Watson named his close friend Andy North, a two-time U.S. Open champion, as assistant captain late last year.
Floyd, who was the U.S. captain in 1989, was also an assistant captain for Paul Azinger when the Americans last won the Ryder Cup in 2008 at Valhalla.
“What Raymond brings here is his experience now and respect of the players,” Watson said. “When these players look at Raymond, this he know he’s been there and they know he’s been successful. They know he wants to win.
“I don’t really need anything else. We don’t need anything else. We need those players to understand that we are there to support them. We have their back. Whatever they need, we’ll bring it to them it.”
However, captains don’t hit a shot.
But it is too early to talk about who’s going to be on the team. Right now, Jimmy Walker is leading the U.S. in points and he’s probably already a lock for Tom Watson’s squad. Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, Jason Dufner and Webb Simpson are on the team right now. So are Harris English and Ryan Moore, who would be rookies.
However, at the moment, Matt Kuchar, Hunter Mahan and Bubba Watson aren’t on the team. And, surprisingly, Jordan Spieth isn’t on the team, either – yet. And Tiger Woods is currently No. 31 on the U.S. points list.
In Europe, Ian Poulter, Henrik Stenson and Sergio García are currently on the team but so are Victor Dubuisson, Thomas Björn, Jamie Donaldson and Joost Luiten. Justin Rose makes his 2014 debut this week at the Northern Trust Open and European captain Paul McGinley will be looking at Rose, Rory McIlroy, Luke Donald, Graeme McDowell, et al., to start to pick up the pace, if for nothing else to cause him to sleep better at night.
Because the conversation is on and it’s not about to slow up.