There are five players from California on the 12-man United States roster for the 44th Ryder Cup against Team Europe, which starts on Friday at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome, Italy.
That’s a good omen for the Americans, who lead the all-time series by 27-14-2, because there have been 30 players from the Golden State during that time, the most from any state, with 26 coming from Florida and 24 from Texas.
Among those Californians were Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Billy Casper and Johnny Miller.
“There were a lot of guys who I think are worthy and are justified to be on the team,” said non-playing U.S. Captain Zach Johnson, a two-time major champion. That happens every year for this country.
“Obviously, I want to take 25 guys. I want to take as many guys as possible but again, it’s not based on one week or even one stretch. It’s based on a collection of data, a collection of recent data to some degree but also a collection of data that is what makes the Ryder Cup the Ryder Cup.”
The Californians on the team are fifth-ranked Patrick Cantlay of Los Alamitos and UCLA, sixth-ranked Xander Schauffele of La Jolla and San Diego State, seventh-ranked Max Homa of Valencia and Cal, Collin Morikawa of La Canada Flintridge and Cal, and Rickie Fowler of Murrieta.
The others on the United States squad are top-ranked Scottie Scheffler, ninth-ranked Brian Harman, 10th-ranked Wyndham Clark, Brooks Kopeka, Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Sam Burns.
“You watch every Ryder Cup and you always, you know, have this idea in the back of your head that you want to be a part of that and you want to get to experience that one day, so it’s very, very surreal,” Burns said.
Europe has narrowed the gap by winning seven of the last 10 Ryder Cups, including six in a row on European soil.
However, the United States behind Captain Steve Stricker won by the largest margin in history, 19-9, two years ago at Whistling Straights Golf and Country Club in Sheboygan, Wis., but the Americans have not won in Europe since a 15-13 victory in 1993 at The Belfry in Sutton Coldfield, England.
Leading the European team are second-ranked Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland, third-ranked Jon Rahm of Spain, fourth-ranked Viktor Hovland of Norway, and eighth-ranked Matt Fitzpatrick of England.
Also on the roster for non-playing Captain Luke Donald of England are Robert MacIntyre of Scotland, Tyrrell Hatton of England, Shane Lowry of Ireland, Justin Rose of England, Sepp Straka of Austria, Tommy Fleetwood of England, Nicolai Hogjaard of Denmark, and Ludwig Aberg of Sweden.
“If he wasn’t going to play this one he was going to play the next eight Ryder Cups, that’s how good I think he is,” Donald said of the 23-year-old Aberg.
Play starts with four Foursomes matches on Friday morning and four Fourball matches, followed by the same on Saturday, and the 44th Ryder Cup will culminate with 12 Singles matches on Sunday.
If either team reaches 14½ points, it will win the competition, but if it finishes in a 14-14 tie, the U.S. will retain possession of the Ryder Cup.
The 45th edition of the Ryder Cup will be played in September of 2025 at Bethpage Black Golf Course in in Farmingdale, N.Y., on Long Island.
For Friday morning’s Foursomes pairings and complete results once the Ryder Cup starts, visit: https://www.pgatour.com/leaderboard