'Patriotic' Spieth eyes Presidents Cup berth


Though he is unlikely to qualify automatically for the U.S. Presidents Cup team this fall, rookie Jordan Spieth offered yet another example of why he could make for an intriguing captain's pick with his runner-up finish at last week's Wyndham Championship. Speaking Tuesday in advance of The Barclays, the 20-year-old made no qualms about his desire to be among the 12 Americans on Fred Couples' squad at Muirfield Village.

'I think my greatest honor that I could ever have in golf is to play for your country,' said Spieth, who finished the 2013 regular season ranked eighth in FedEx Cup points. 'I just really, really love it. I love standing there and seeing the flag go up. I'm a very patriotic person.'

Before turning pro, Spieth represented the U.S. at both the Junior Ryder Cup (2010) and Walker Cup (2011). This year, he has taken the PGA Tour by storm, beginning the season with no status whatsoever but playing his way into the top 40 in the latest world rankings, a meteoric rise that was highlighted by his playoff victory at the John Deere Classic last month. Though he remains 28th on the Presidents Cup points list with only the top 10 earning automatic berths, Spieth is hopeful his recent strong play will merit consideration.

'I think at this point, it would be a tremendous honor if Freddie (Couples) were to pick me,' noted Spieth, who has notched seven top-10 finishes in just 19 starts this season. 'I know where I stand and I know that I'm definitely on the outside looking in, but I also know that playing really well these next couple weeks is a way to take care of that.' 

The former Texas standout has two weeks left to gain the attention of Couples, as the automatic spots will be finalized following the Deutsche Bank Championship with each captain rounding out his roster with two additional selections on Sept. 4. Though he admitted it was not a realistic goal at the beginning of the year, Spieth now feels as though a spot on the team is within sight.

'Honestly, it's weird. It kind of brings out a little extra fire,' he added. 'I actually seem to play my best golf in match play and in those team events.'