Davis Love III has the unenviable task of captaining the 2016 U.S. Ryder Cup team, which is basically the equivalent of being a substitute teacher in a third-grade class filled with superstars, whiners, prima donnas and Bill Haas. It’s a no-win. But it’s even more of a no-win when you set up the press like Love did the other day after being asked about his captain’s picks (the top 10 in Ryder Cup points automatically play at Hazeltine; Love chooses the remaining two players).
DL3 was asked about – who else – Tiger Woods and whether he’d ever be considered for a captain’s pick. Instead of gently swatting away the answer, like he’d do to a mosquito while waiting to hit his approach on the 6th fairway, Love let that thing land on him and bite the hell out of him, leaving a mark that he’ll be annoyed with for months.
If I knew it wasn’t, I’d say this was a plot twist on a Kardashian reality show because no one — no one — would possibly say this unless they were courting drama. I mean, Love saw what happened to Tom Watson, right? That dude was a legend and the Ryder Cup ate him up, chewed him and spit him back out. For a time it looked like the debacle of 2014 would come to define Watson, but luckily his career managed to outweigh his (reported) bullheadedness and lack of communication.
(Photo by Stan Badz/PGA TOUR)
And now Love is starting in win this Tiger stuff? Does he want to be St. Sebastian? Davis, here’s how to answer the question, "would you consider adding Tiger Woods as a captain’s pick?"
1. "I can’t wait for Tiger to get back on the course. Until he does, it’s a moot point, right?" (Fake laugh while eyeing PGA PR person with a "let’s wrap it up" look.)
(Photo by Hector Vivas/LatinContent/Getty Images)
2. "No matter what, I’m thrilled Tiger is on the team as an assistant captain." (Tiger is an assistant captain, at Love’s request.)
3. Stare at reporter for 10 seconds, jump out open window and run away, top speed.
Do not give this story any life before it actually need be a story, okay? If Tiger comes back at the Memorial or U.S. Open or wherever and looks like the Tiger of old then, sure, you’re going to have to deal with this question. But as long as Tiger’s public golf game consists of YouTube clips of him (poorly) hitting balls on a range, then answering a question about whether Tiger will be a Ryder Cupper is like asking me whether I’ll be going to the moon this week.
(Photo by Chris Condon/PGA TOUR)
Not that I blame Love. There really is no good way to respond to that question because a persistent reporter wouldn’t let him slide with a non-answer answer. This is why the Ryder Cup captain’s job is the worst one in sports. If you win, it’s because of the players. If you lose, the national disgrace is on you. And maybe Tiger Woods, if he plays because, you know, he’s not good at golf right now.