If you had been told, in the week leading up to the Ryder Cup, that American rookies Jason Dufner and Keegan Bradley would put up 3-1-0 records; that Zach Johnson and Phil Mickelson would also put up 3-1-0 records and that Dustin Johnson would go 3-0-0, how confident would you have been in a wager on a TEAM USA victory?
If you had been told, in the week leading up to the Ryder Cup, that Euros Graeme McDowell, Peter Hanson, Lee Westwood , Luke Donald, Martin Kaymer and Francesco Molinari would combine for only six total match victories, would you have expected TEAM EUROPE to be popping champagne corks Sunday evening?
If you had been told, in the week leading up to the Ryder Cup, that TEAM USA would be leading by a score or 10-6 heading into Sunday singles, my only question would have been what bar are you watching the NFL games at or do you just veg out on the couch?
By now the internet is full of opinion pieces second guessing Captain Love for his at large selections of Steve Stricker and Jim Furyk, his decision to sit Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley Saturday afternoon and his Sunday singles designations.
It's all moot; it doesn't matter. The precious chalice is headed back to Europe for two more years when, hopefully, at Gleneagles in Sotland, a rejiggered TEAM USA can claim it once again.
I will leave to others to debate team selections, pairings, what players should have played where and when, who choked and who didn't, whether or not Jose should have conceded Tiger's par putt at 18, should Rory get a contract deal with a clock company and who should be the next team captains.
Because, again, it's over.
Doesn't mean I'll forget this one any time soon. Oh no. This one was for the ages, to be remembered and replayed (thank you Youtube!!!) and filed away with all the other great sporting events one keeps for immediate recall late at night over beers with friends. This one was must see TV, even if NBC had way too many commercials
On golf's greatest stage, with players competing not for the usual multimillion dollar purses but for the sheer joy of the competition and for the thrill and honor of representing their countries, this Ryder Cup lived up to its advance billing. The shot making abilities on display under the intense pressure of a global audience hanging on every shot was brilliant. The inevitable heartbreak of the players on the wrong side of the scoreboard is always a thing of sadness to observe. And, of course, the jubilation and pride that goes with winning and watching grown men recall the simpler joys of their youth.
It's another reason why we watch; because it brings us back to that time in our lives when days were carefree, smiles were plentiful and laughter came easier kindergarten.
A few observations to chew on:
How delicious was the irony that in 1999 a man named Justin would make a 50 foot putt on the 17th at Brookline to defeat Olazabal and then in 2012 a man named Justin would make a 35 foot putt on the 17th at Medinah to help Olazabal?
Tiger Woods now has the record for most consecutive losses in Ryder Cup history-5.
Phil Mickelson has the record for playing on the most losing Ryder Cup teams-7.
Mickelson and Jim Furyk both came to the 17th tee up one and neither of them gets a point. Huh?
Brandt Snedeker (one point) found out what real pressure was. Tour Championship stuff? Fedex Cup? That's like pee wee football.
When Steve Stricker was pondering his shot from the 18th fairway yesterday it looked like he could have used a barf bag.
Is there some way TEAM USA could get a clone of Ian Poulter? I want him on my side. The guy is insane in the Ryder Cup.
Finally, here's an idea somebody tweeted online: when one team wins a match, instead of putting a point on the board, give them the option of taking a point OFF the other team's board. This option could be used only once during the event. Hmmmm