LOS ANGELES — Fred Couples said he is fine with Davis Love III reportedly getting the 2016 U.S. Ryder Cup captaincy, but he admitted he might have had a problem with the PGA of America had they gone with someone other than Love or himself.
Love will be named captain next week, according to multiple media reports. The PGA of America has a news conference scheduled for Tuesday.
“They chose a great guy in Davis. He deserves it,” Couples told the Golf Channel in an interview broadcast Wednesday night. “And maybe in a couple of years down the line, I’ll have another shot at it. There’s so many guys. I’m not bitter or upset or anything like that, because in my opinion, they picked a great guy.”
Couples and Love are longtime friends, and Couples served as an assistant captain on the 2012 team that Love captained at Medinah, where the U.S. lost to Europe 14½ to 13½.
The 2016 matches will be held at Hazeltine in Chaska, Minnesota.
After guiding the U.S. to a 3-0 record in the Presidents Cup and after all the ills that have confronted the American team, Couples was considered the favorite among players who were part of an 11-member task force that was set up to examine the issues that face the Americans, who have lost three in a row and six of the last seven Ryder Cups to Europe.
“I talked to [PGA of America CEO] Pete Bevacqua about Christmastime, and I’m not pushing myself on anyone,” Couples said. “I certainly didn’t call them back. But he told me he’d get back in touch with me and it would be a while, because they were going to think about it. …
“To be quite honest with you, I will tell you that if it was maybe not Davis, I might have a different attitude toward this. He’s been my friend for 30 years and I’m very happy for him. And so I have no bitterness at all. The PGA … they do their own thing and they do it very well. And we just have to win the thing in Minnesota. That’s pretty much what anyone cares about.”
Love, 50, is a 20-time winner on the PGA Tour who played on six U.S. Ryder Cup teams and was a popular captain in 2012.
Couples is playing in this week’s Northern Trust Open at Riviera on a sponsor exemption.