CARMEL, Ind. – Now that the American and European rosters are set, Graeme McDowell can’t wait for the Ryder Cup to begin at Medinah in three weeks.
“It speaks volumes about the American team that Hunter Mahan wins twice this year and does not get on that team,” McDowell said on the driving range at Crooked Stick Tuesday while preparing for the FedEx Cup's BMW Championship. “It speaks volumes about how strong they are.”
McDowell was impressed at the number of good choices U.S. captain Davis Love III had for his four captain’s picks. Mahan didn’t make it despite his two PGA Tour victories this year, one the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. Nick Watney didn’t make it despite winning a FedEx Cup playoff event two weeks ago.
“I think Davis Love could have tossed the names up in the air and taken any four and had a good team,” McDowell said.
Ladbrokes makes the Americans a 4/5 favorite.
“They are both very good teams, and it’s going to be very competitive and tight and will go down to the last few games,” McDowell said. “I’m excited.”
McDowell, who became a Ryder Cup star holing a clutch putt to set up Europe’s victory in Wales two years ago, is tempering his Ryder Cup excitement this week with work at hand. He’s trying to make the Tour Championship for the first time.
McDowell is 41st in the FedEx Cup points standings and needs to be among the top 30 to advance to the Tour Championship.
“I think I’ll need a top five this week to make it,” McDowell said. “I am, by my own admission, a little flat the last couple weeks, maybe struggling to kind of get going after the U.S. PGA Championship. It’s very hard to switch off after that and switch on for something, the FedEx Cup playoffs, that I’m still trying to get my head around. It’s only my second FedEx Cup.
“I have a big job to do this week, and I’m motivated.”