In a significant turn, the PGA of America will name Tom Watson as the American captain for the 2014 Ryder Cup, according to a report by Tim Rosaforte of Golf World. Watson would be a repeat captain, having already led the Americans to victory at The Belfry in 1993.
Naming a veteran like Watson would break the trend of having American captains who are typically still Tour contemporaries, albeit older, of the 12 team members. Rosaforte, however, cites the PGA's desire to have a more headstrong captain with an authoritative resume. Watson certainly has the bona fides, and he won't hesitate to order around the richest, most decorated players in the world. He's never been shy about publicly criticizing Tiger Woods, mostly for his on-course behavior, so it will certainly be interesting to watch the dynamic between those two at Gleneagles in 2014.
Watson's candidacy was not something that had been bandied about much in golf circles. But the idea did gain legs recently, and the eight-time major winner commented on the possibility this past week at the Australian Open. Watson did not at all shoot down the idea, saying it would be an "honor" and "cool" to be a Ryder Cup Captain again.
As a player, Watson's Ryder Cup teams were 3-0-1 (with Europe retaining the cup on the tie). In 1993, he led the USA to a 15-13 win at The Belfry -- the last American win on European soil. With the competition returning to Scotland in 2014, tabbing Watson, the best British Open player in the history of the game, can only bolster the American chances as they try to rebound from the embarrassing meltdown at Medinah. He's revered by European players and fans for his record overseas, which includes five British Opens. Those amiable feelings, however, will likely turn to enmity for at least one week in 2014.
David Toms emerged as the one other likely candidate for the PGA, but Rosaforte writes that he expects Toms to captain the 2016 team at Hazeltine. The announcement will be made Thursday morning on the Today Show.