Ryder Cup Love a dominant theme at Riviera

Sun Feb 22, 2015 3:46pm EST
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By Mark Lamport-Stokes

PACIFIC PALISADES, California (Reuters) - Davis Love III may have missed the cut at this week's Northern Trust Open but the PGA Tour veteran's presence has loomed large over the entire tournament at Riviera Country Club.

The United States Ryder Cup captain in 2012, Love is widely expected to be given the role on Tuesday for a second time and lead his country in the 2016 edition at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota.

Hardly surprisingly, Love remained tight-lipped on the subject at Riviera but many of his peers have expressed their delight that the 50-year-old American could have the chance to gain redemption for the U.S. meltdown at Medinah in 2012.

"If it's true, I am super excited for him," Brandt Snedeker, who won last week's AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and made his Ryder Cup debut at Medinah under Love's captaincy, told Reuters.

"I think everybody that played for him in 2012 wanted him to get the job because, in my opinion, he did a great job at Medinah, and we all had a great time.

"Unfortunately we lost it for him and he could not have done anything differently or better than he did."

At Medinah on the outskirts of Chicago, Love orchestrated a commanding 10-6 lead for the U.S. heading into the final day before Jose Maria Olazabal's European team stormed back to win by 14-1/2 points to 13-1/2.

"If it's true and Davis is captain for 2016, the team will have extra motivation to win one for him just because of what he has meant to American golf, what he means to all the guys on tour and how much we respect him," said Snedeker.   Continued...

Aug 6, 2014; Louisville, KY, USA; PGA golfer Davis Love III tees off with an iron during practice for the 2014 PGA Championship at Valhalla Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports