Brooks Koepka is one of the six captain’s picks by Team USA’s captain, Zach Johnson.
After just missing the number to qualify automatically, it was uncertain if Johnson would pick him because of Koepka’s defection to LIV Golf. That divisiveness was a concern for many, as plenty of reporters like Brandel Chamblee thought Koepka was bad for the Ryder Cup.
Chamblee and others did not get their wish though as Johnson went with experience.
He knew the kind of competitor the nine-time PGA Tour winner was, and it was an easy pick to have him join this team.
After the former Florida State Seminole was announced as a captain’s pick, he was boldly candid about what it means to be one of the 12 Americans teeing it up in Italy.
“I think you’re just playing for something bigger than yourself,” Koepka said. “You don’t want to let the other guys on the team down. It’s a fun event.
“It’s the most nervous I’ve ever been in a golf tournament was teeing it up at the Ryder Cup. I’ve enjoyed it, and every time I’ve played, I’ve just tried and go get a point for the team.”
That admission of it being the most nervous he has ever been is shocking. The 33-year-old has always seemed unbreakable. His emotions are always in check, but it’s good to see he has those nerves for something like the Ryder Cup.
Koepka’s stellar play this year helped him get one of the six picks. He won his fifth major and third PGA Championship title while also finishing runner-up in Augusta at the Masters.
This Cup will mark the fourth time he has made the U.S. Team. He holds a 6-5-1 Ryder Cup record and will look to help the Americans end a 30-year drought of winning on European soil.
Savannah Leigh Richardson is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow her on Twitter @SportsGirlSL and Instagram @savannah_leigh_sports for more golf coverage. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough too.