Love to return as 2016 U.S. Ryder Cup captain


Davis Love III will return as U.S. Ryder Cup captain in 2016, Golf Channel insider Tim Rosaforte reported Monday.

An official announcement will be made Feb. 24 at PGA of America headquarters in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. 

A spokesman for Love and the PGA of America told Golf Channel: “It is premature to discuss the U.S. Ryder Cup captaincy and we are not prepared to comment at this time.”

Love, who served as the 2012 captain at Medinah, was chosen after the 11-man Ryder Cup task force held multiple meetings, including a four-hour session two weeks ago in San Diego.

The 2012 U.S. team held a 10-6 lead heading into Sunday singles, only to lose the cup, 14 ½ to 13 ½, after Europe tied the largest final-day comeback. Love was beloved by the players, but he was heavily criticized for sitting the red-hot pairing of Keegan Bradley and Phil Mickelson on Saturday afternoon because Mickelson wanted to rest. Europe won the last two matches in the final team portion before the stirring Sunday rally.

Though the 50-year-old Love is part of the 11-man task force, he wasn’t touted publicly as one of the leading candidates. Fred Couples, who went 3-0 as Presidents Cup captain, and Paul Azinger, who in 2008 led the U.S. to its only win this century, were thought to be the favorites for the job. 

Couples said last fall that he’s “not a PGA of America guy,” and that much should now be clear. Rosaforte reported that Couples wasn’t popular with the past captains. 

Love is expected to square off at Hazeltine against Darren Clarke, who will be named the European captain on Wednesday, according to published reports. 

Rosaforte also said that Tom Lehman and Steve Stricker – both of whom are on the task force – are likely to be heavily involved in the 2016 matches.

Love will become the eighth man to captain the Ryder Cup on multiple occasions, joining Walter Hagen, Sam Snead, Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer, Jack Burke, Jack Nicklaus and Tom Watson. Only Burke got a second chance after losing in his debut.

The Americans have lost eight of the past 10 Ryder Cups, including six of the past seven.