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Is Tiger Woods the right U.S. Ryder Cup captain for 2025?

While the list of potential candidates is long, readers of The First Call look to Woods, who served as the 2019 Presidents Cup captain, as the next man. Plus, more Ryder Cup reactions

Ryder Cup 2016
Tiger Woods, right, served as a U.S. Ryder Cup vice captain in 2018 at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota. In 2019, he was the U.S. Presidents Cup captain.

Question of the week [October 9-15]: Who should be the United States Ryder Cup captain in 2025 and why?

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This is not an anti-Tiger Woods rant, but unless other changes are made — and Tiger might be the person to change them — I don't see Tiger's presence being the solution to all of the U.S. Ryder Cup problems. It almost seems like a cop-out to me, everyone looking for the quick easy solution to the problem. 

Basically most of the people who are pushing for Tiger to be captain are the current hierarchy of the U.S. Ryder Cup group. By grabbing onto Tiger, they can say that they have found the solution and then just sit back and see what happens. Frankly, I wouldn't want to be Tiger in this situation, because if the U.S. doesn't win, all the blame will fall on him. He could be a positive influence certainly, but the captain can only do so much. And will he bring his good buddy Justin Thomas and Thomas' buddy, Jordan Spieth, regardless of how they are playing? And of course we can't leave good old Rickie [Fowler] at home. Lots of things need to change, and I don't think that Tiger is the magic answer in spite of his impressive credentials.

John Abercrombie
Cape Girardeau, Missouri

As a member of the PGA of America I must be critical of their selection of captains. The fact that Hale Irwin and Larry Nelson have never been captains is flat wrong. Nelson won the PGA Championship twice and Irwin’s Ryder Cup record is exemplary. This list of vice captains is also worth noting here. No offense to these PGA Tour Champions players but the vice captains should be the PGA Tour players that should be considered as future captains.  

If The PGA of America truly wants to win back the Ryder Cup, then they should reduce the number of captain's picks to two or three and they should disqualify the outspoken players that expect to be compensated to play.

Dennis Brissette
Lake Mary, Florida

Tiger Woods because I think he can put the necessary fire back in the bellies of the American players.

Bob Norris
Cincinnati, Ohio

Tiger Woods? An easy pick and probably 90% of respondents will lean this way? Even Davis Love III said it’s his if he wants it. I’m sure perennial assistant captains will agree. Problem is, he probably won’t take it. Too much potential downside and he is too close to some players. Do you really want to see Justin Thomas tee it up against Rory McIlroy for all the marbles? 

What about Phil Michelson? A great selection, but it will never happen. It would be very interesting to see his captain’s picks since many relationships were severed when he bolted to LIV Golf. I mean, hmm, what would the odds be ... sorry, bad selection  of words. I digress.

What about John Daly? He has been up against the wall more times than Reggie Jackson playing right field. Just imagine what the Saturday night dinner would be like. And how about the players' outfits? He certainly would have a following and he would be able to ride in a cart all over the course. My guess, he will probably get overlooked. 

What about Brooks Koepka? A no-nonsense kind of guy. He would certainly keep the players and the reporters in line. Just imagine the press conferences. Another valid take-no-prisoners choice that will no doubt be rejected. 

Brandel Chamblee? He would be able to tell you the captain’s picks today, live on Golf Channel. Why wait till ‘25? He can tell you in painstaking detail why we lost in France, Italy and wherever else you care to look. He will have done his homework. Probably not a bad choice, but he’s made too many enemies. The closed door meetings might be interesting though.

Kidding aside, except for Chamblee, how about old DD, David Duval? A student of the game. Probably the most impartial selection of captain’s picks. Hiring his gardener as a color commentator, he could do a great job with the press conferences. He would also be brilliant at choosing the matchups for each day's play. All the players would respect him. Heck, even the opposing players and captains would love him. He’s been there, done that. He has never offended anyone. He would demand his players to be focused, organized and give 110% on and off the course. This is my pick and I dare say the only person replying that will recommend old DD. At least, that’s how I see it playing out. 

P.J. Vicary
The Villages, Florida

[QOTW, October 2-8: What were your takeaways — on and off the course — from the 44th Ryder Cup, won by Europe, 16.5-11.5?]

This is the first Ryder Cup in 40 years that I did not watch. Gone are the days of the "War at the Shore." The European team has always played these matches as a team. The U.S. has not. That is clear.

I am completely fed up with the American team and believe that this is not about winning, but more about the boys getting together. This team was never about putting the best players on the course. This team was a fiction created by a leadership team that had a good story to tell. That is it.  

I also don’t care about the excuses of having four to five weeks off. The Americans could have taken advantage of the same opportunities to play that the Europeans did.  

The captain’s picks were horrible and, for the most part, they showed that on the golf course.

When I saw the scores from Friday morning, I thought to myself, good. I hope they get their asses kicked. To me, the American team, exclusive of a choice few, is a bunch of millionaires who continually complain about getting paid. It is sad and provides another shining example of the "ugly Americans." I played golf with some friends on Monday and each of them felt the same way I did. 

Steve Nardi
Ocean View, Delaware

I thought Paul McGinley said it best, "that not one player on the U.S. team would show up for a major after taking five weeks off.” That leads you to think about how much it really meant to many of the players. Did they think all they had to do was show up to win?

Barry Duckworth 
Knoxville, Tennessee 

Team USA got distracted by "hats" and Team Europe focused on playing winning golf. High-ranking players need to remember that rankings and stats mean nothing once the ball is in the air. You gotta get your ball in the hole with less strokes and quicker than your opponent. Finally, the European embrace the team concept and check their egos at the door.

If the contest were played "on paper." then it looks like Team USA might have had the upper hand. Next time, the USA needs to just play and not get caught up in the media frenzy about money, hats, irate caddies and so called alpha players. 

Play your best and accept the outcome. To quote George Washington Carver: "99% of all failures come from people who have a habit of making excuses."

Ron Williams
Salem, Virginia

I listen to Sirius/XM radio golf broadcasts a lot. Here’s what I heard in the weeks preceding the Ryder Cup. Justin Thomas deserves to be on the team. Those poor Europeans have three low-ranking players who don’t deserve a spot. Justin Rose is too old. Tyrell Hatton is temperamental. Tommy Fleetwood is inconsistent. Rory McIlroy has lost his short game, etc. etc. I thought we would win 24-0. We never played or acted like a team, but our press releases were great.

Joe Taylor
Overton, Texas

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