DAVIS LOVE, III: A lot of thought
February 8, 2012 to who they would be. Corey gave me a
great insight to these two years by letting
me be an assistant captain. I learned an
An Interview With: awful lot, and I really learned how
important the assistants are, especially
DAVIS LOVE III when it rains a lot (laughs), that we get to
carry a lot of towels and a lot of extra
JOEL SCHUCHMANN: Joining us sandwiches. And I told him actually after
is Davis Love, III, two-time champion at the Wales Ryder Cup that I would like to
the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. be just a caddie assistant every year
Davis, playing in your 27th Pebble Beach because it was so much fun doing all the
tournament this week, maybe some work behind the scenes.
opening comments. You're also the Ryder But it is a big job and I know Jose
Cup Captain in 2012, so I'm sure it's been Maria and I have been talking about is
an exciting year for you. I know you'd like four the right number or is that too many,
to play some good golf, and got a lot of but it certainly seems like the last two
other responsibilities as well. years four has worked, and I'm trying to
DAVIS LOVE, III: Yeah. I just narrow down my four right now. I think we
walked out on the range and a couple of will probably announce, again, talking to
guys said "hello, Captain," so that's Jose Maria, seeing when he is ready,
always nice to hear and it's exciting that trying to time it together.
we're in a Ryder Cup year. And we've
been doing obviously a lot of preparations Q. Are you considering Fred (Couples)
getting ready and now the points are an assistant? You guys have a long friendship,
but he's kind of become a big figure given the
getting exciting, and guys are starting -- last Presidents Cup.
the players are starting to talk about it a lot DAVIS LOVE, III: He's 2 and 0.
Excited to -- I got off to a slow start. Q. Yeah, he's 2 and 0. Is that a
Obviously, I've only played twice, but distraction or --?
everybody's thinking that way, thinking DAVIS LOVE, III: I'm looking to get
about making points, and obviously Kyle the guys to play more relaxed and have
Stanley had a great couple weeks and fun, and obviously, you know, we want to
(Steve) Stricker had a great couple weeks, win, and seems like Fred's put together a
and a lot of our guys are playing well. formula where they came out firing and
And there's a lot of details that I've relaxed and made some great pairings. So
been working on behind the scenes. he and I have already talked a lot, and he
Robin and I have been very busy, so it's would be high on my list.
going to be a fun year.
JOEL SCHUCHMANN: OK. We'll
take some questions.
Q. Have you given any thought to
assistant captain, when you're thinking about
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Obviously, he's in the running to be Q. The assistant captain side of the
the Presidents Cup Captain again equation, would you ever look at former Ryder
Cup captains as an assistant captain?
because he did so well with the Presidents
DAVIS LOVE, III: Again, I watched
Cup that the players want him back. And I
what Corey did, you know, brought in a
know that's -- you know, he wants to be
friend that had been a captain before.
captain of the Presidents Cup team again,
That was really -- I mean I know I looked
and we'll see where that goes in the next
at Tom Lehman an awful lot that week, all
couple months when Tim (Finchem)
right, now what do we do, you know,
because he'd been there before. And
But no, I'm going to rely on my
Corey leaned on him more than his other
friends, you know, that have played a lot
assistants because he had the
of Ryder Cups, and Fred's definitely one
experience. He'd been there before.
And you know, I'm going to
Q. Davis, you mentioned the points are consider, again, anybody that I think can
kind of getting exciting. When do you seriously make our team better, whether it's the four
start looking at the list and the points? captains, assistant captains or the four
DAVIS LOVE, III: I don't know. captains' picks for playing. Whoever can
That's a good question. Obviously, it's make the team better. I'm not going -- and
volatile right now. You know, it changes so you know, Corey went with some of his
fast. Steve Stricker takes a month off and close friends, but he didn't go with just
Kyle Stanley has two great weeks, and friends. He went with guys he felt like --
you know, it just changes. It changes I've been very -- you know, not that close
quickly. to Corey. Certainly there's three or four
I would think it's serious, you know, other guys that I suspect he would pick
mid majors, you know, somewhere after rather than me. But he picked me for a
the Masters, U. S. Open, it's going to get reason, he picked Tom for a reason, he
real close, and you'll kind of solidify maybe picked (Paul) Goydos for a reason, and it
six. I know they measure for clothes all worked very, very well except for just a
usually in May. So maybe after that you putt here or putt there. He had a great
start getting a little more serious. strategy and a great plan.
I know when I always played it was
-- you went to the Memorial, got measured Q. Davis, you mentioned it's still early,
for clothes, and you started choking on but looking at the list, seven of the eight
automatic spots right now are being filled by
points. So that's probably the time is you guys who would be rookies. Does that worry
know that it's serious when you get you that you have that kind of lack of
measured for your clothes and the points experience on the team right now?
start settling out. DAVIS LOVE, III: No. To Alex's
You know, I'd say U. S. Open I'll be point, it's going to change a lot. I like the
real intent on starting to pick out the four guys that are on there because they're
or five guys that I think are going to make making a ton of birdies, you know, and
it and the four or five guys that are going that's what we need to do is make tons of
to be on the bubble. birdies.
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You know, Kyle, I talked to him You know, it doesn't really matter
after San Diego and I said, "you just keep whether it's Presidents Cup or Ryder Cup
getting there and making that many birdies or Walker Cup, if you find two guys that
you're going to win a bunch of golf get along really well, like Freddie and I did
tournaments," and he proved it the very in the World Cup, you find two guys that
next week. get along real well and are comfortable
All these guys are making -- Mark with each other on the golf course, you
Wilson, back to the last couple years. I kind of got to go with it.
played with Ben Crane last week, holy
cow, the guy is putting well. But if I had Q. You kind of excited about the
emergence of these young guys? A year ago
this eight guys playing like that in about this time people were saying that most of
September, yeah, I'd be very happy. You the young talent is over in Europe. They've got
just want eight guys playing that good, Keegan (Bradley) winning the PGA.
and that's what we're looking for. And it'll DAVIS LOVE, III: It goes in cycles
change a lot. and it goes in what people are watching.
You know, Tiger doesn't have a Obviously when Rory, you know, was so
start in this year yet. I don't know how hot last year and winning the U. S. Open
many Phil has, maybe two, two or three. and those guys had won three majors in a
So you know, give those guys 15 -- give row, it just goes in cycles.
Stricker some more time. (Jim) Furyk, But our guys, you know, you watch
some more time, I think it'll start looking the American tour -- Steve Stricker played
very similar. We'll probably have four or awfully well on our tour last year. We had
five guys that have done it before and four a lot of guys playing really well. So it's nice
or five guys that haven't, and that's the to see these young guys -- you know, I
way it usually works out. know Kyle a little bit, Johnson, Brandt from
their Sea Island connection, so I'm well
Q. Anything to be gleaned from the connected with a lot of the younger guys,
Presidents Cup in regards to maybe pairings?
Or, I don't know how close you watch that, but Lucas, Zach, Ben Crane because of Zach
was there anything that you could take from living at St. Simons and Jonathan Byrd,
that that might help you? friends with Ben. So I'm getting to know a
DAVIS LOVE, III: I didn't watch it lot of these guys, and I'm fortunate -- I've
closely, but I've talked to Fred a fair been very fortunate that I'm exempt and
amount and some other guys about it. And I'm playing. I got paired with Ben last week
yeah, that's what we're looking for. We're in Phoenix. I got paired with Steve Stricker
looking for free-wheeling and having fun in Hawaii. So I've played twice and I
and making lots of birdies, playing great. haven't made a cut, but I've made some
His pairings were -- some of them were good progress. (Laughs). Made some
pretty obvious and some of them weren't. good progress with the guys that are
He filled me in on how he got to that point, probably going to be on my team. And it's
how he and Jay got to that point on a lot of funny, both of those guys putt really good.
them. I've figured out that putting is very
And you know, I'm going to rely on important to shooting low scores.
guys that have had success like him and
Paul and Corey on putting the right guys
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I didn't -- I hit it well enough. If I'd have limb. You know, he's picking the best
putted like Ben Crane, I'd have done really player we've ever seen play.
good last week. God, he just -- it's But you know, healthy, full season,
unbelievable, and like I talked to Todd you know, either one of the last couple
Anderson after playing with Brandt a little years, just a few more starts and a little bit
bit, and I'm like, you know, it's not Ben healthier, he'd have made those teams.
Crenshaw, or you know, it's not that He wasn't -- he just didn't have enough
Brandt looks like, you know, he has the starts. So I think if he has a full, healthy
purest stroke on tour, and Todd goes, season, we won't be worrying about
"he's the best green reader on tour and picking him. But it's nice with four picks, I
he's a confident putter." got a lot of flexibility.
So I learned something about
Brandt. I've learned something about Ben; Q. As a guy who's been out here a
quarter century or so, what kind of media
I've learned even more about -- Stricker training did Julius make you go through?
and I know each other very, very well. DAVIS LOVE, III: Julius didn't
We'd both rather be in a deer stand most make me go through any, but Joe
of the time. But I watched him play from a Steranka did. (Laughs). Joe's just one
different perspective the last few years, level ahead of Julius and I in the pecking
watching him -- you know, why is he so order, so we do what he says.
successful right now. I've heard him talk to But I've actually had media training
guys about his putting. with Fred a couple of times and then The
So I'm just lucky that I'm out here PGA of America helped me out a lot. This
with those guys, especially like at Sea is the start of a lot of it really this fear for
Island, go out to hit balls on the range and me.
there's Jonathan Byrd and Zach Johnson,
two guys that I'd like to see on the team Q. (Indiscernible)?
because they're great wedge players, DAVIS LOVE, III: Yeah. We
great putters. actually -- Freddie and I actually did it --
Zach's got the experience and we did it in Dallas one time when we were
Jonathan's been winning, so I'm just lucky -- 24 years ago, when we were younger,
to be out here and amongst them all the 22 years ago maybe. It was fun. It was
time. very entertaining. Ought get the old tapes
out of that.
Q. Fred a month before he had to say
Tiger was going to be on his team. Six months Q. You were joking a little bit about the
out I was wondering if you could do the same fitting in May and splitting up points after the U.
for us. S. Open and that kind of thing. Can you just
DAVIS LOVE, III: I don't know. kind of compare, you know, it's a little bit early,
He's hitting it really good and his last three but for you personally, you're used to feeling
starts are good. It's hard to get points with that pressure trying to make the team as a
player. Where's the stress level and can you
no starts. I think if you give him enough feel it building, maybe stress is maybe not the
starts he'll probably get enough points. right word. But as a Captain.
His last three events he's played
very, very well. Fred knew what he was
doing. I mean he wasn't going out on a
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DAVIS LOVE, III: As a player that's Q. (Indiscernible).
why they're walking up to me and saying DAVIS LOVE, III: Yeah, the
"hello, Captain.” They're already thinking Teleprompter has got me worried.
about it. They're looking at points.
Q. I don't know what other word you
You know, I know Tiger's not going use other than do players try to suck up to you
down the list seeing where he is on points now?
because he's used to it, but I guarantee DAVIS LOVE, III: They should.
you these guys that are up there now are (Laughs).
excited about where they are. Even my
wife asked, why isn't so and so on the list Q. And how do you deal with the idea
and you're on the list? Well, I got some of you being a colleague, peer, buddy of a lot of
these guys and now you're going to have to
points in the majors last year, and this is make some very difficult decisions?
the year that counts. DAVIS LOVE, III: I've heard a
I think guys are focused on that -- couple of guys say the same exact words
you know, when I walk out on the range or that I said, whether it was Tom Kite or
walk onto the tee and guys say, "hello, Lonny Watkins or Curtis Strange, Fred
Captain," it's still stunning to me that, I'm Couples, I want to make his team. And I
like, oh, yeah. You know, I'm bogged don't want any of my friends -- you know,
down in the details. I'm not thinking, you I'm lucky, I've got friends from the
know, Friday teeing it up yet. So it's hitting Champions Tour down to rookies this year
me that, you know, I'm going to be sitting that I've watched play college golf and
in a room probably with Tiger Woods and come up through the ranks.
Phil Mickelson and Jim Furyk and my I don't want any of those guys
assistants trying to figure out pairings trying too hard to make my team and have
before we know it. So it's starting to hit it mess them up. I want them to just go
home a little bit. play. The best thing you can do, like I told
I'm excited about it. You know, I'm Kyle Stanley, just keep making birdies,
excited about this year in general. I'm you're going to win golf tournaments. Just
trying to play. I've got a lot of go do it.
responsibilities, and then I've got these And you know, whether it's Justin
guys looking to me to be their Captain. So Leonard or Hudson Swafford or Harris
it's going to be a fun year. English or Brian Harman, young guys, I
I'm nervous, I talked to Michael just want them to go free-wheel it, have
Bamberger. I am nervous about the fun and play. You'll get your points. I think
speeches is the only thing I'm really it was Mark Wilson at the Masters cut in
nervous about. Probably Sunday front of me on 10 and started walking off
afternoon the putting will get more nervous the tee and turned around and went, "I
for me watching these guys play. But the probably shouldn't have done that, should
big speeches in front of a crowd, I sat I?"
there and watched Corey and I was going,
oh, boy, I'm going to have to do that one
day. And that's what we're not used to. I'm
used to watching guys play golf, so that'll
be the fun part.
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"No, you shouldn't have done that.” pressure. We need them on the team. And
(Laughs). Guys are thinking that way, but so when you get down to it, you know, it's
if you're putting really good, you're going not going to be -- it's not going to be a
to be in line for a pick. That's what it boils hard thing to do. I think the hardest thing
down to. Whoever is putting really good to do is you might have five or six guys
during the PLAYOFFS, that's what I'm and telling two guys that they didn't make
going to be looking for, what my assistant it is going to be hard. But I think it'll be
captains are going to be looking for. pretty obvious a month out that there's a
Like I watched -- you know, I was small group, and you want some
playing through the PLAYOFFS when experience of guys that can rise to the
Corey was picking, and I got to the occasion no matter what they've been
meetings late when they had basically doing lately, and you want some guys that
picked the fourth that they wanted to pick are doing it at the time, that are making
by the time I got there that night, but the the putts, that are charging up the list and
strategy of that, of all those picks was who not -- that's what I've seen in a lot of the
do we think is going to match up in captains. Guys that are falling off the list
pairings and who do we think is going to are falling off for a reason. Guys that are
putt good under pressure. That's why charging up the list are doing it for a
Rickie Fowler was in there. Rickie Fowler reason, and you got to factor that in there
putted great under pressure. He made when you're looking at them.
putts coming down the stretch on Sunday.
And that's what we want is guys that are Q. Just curious, I've been busting on
Joe Steranka about this for a while, but would
cocky and confident with their putters, and you like to see it go to four days, then if you
then guys that mesh good on the team. So had rain you'd have more time to kind of get
they can suck up a little bit, but we're caught up and be an extra day of fun and so
going to pick guys that are putting good. much of the results wouldn't get lost from the
Q. Davis, last year Jim Furyk just made DAVIS LOVE, III: It was funny, we
the team, didn't really have a very good 2011 were talking about that the other day,
and then ended up being maybe the All Star on whether the Presidents Cup, the Ryder
the team of the Presidents Cup. How do you
factor that kind of stuff in when you're making
Cup or the Walker Cup had it right. Those
your four picks? Obviously you've mentioned guys go overseas to the Walker Cup and
Furyk a couple of times, but how do you if it's they only play two days. You know? And
an experience thing versus maybe and I don't we get to the Ryder Cup on Monday and it
think he was putting very well coming in either. seems like it takes forever to start. Fred
DAVIS LOVE, III: I think you know had a great line about when he wanted his
the guys that would rise to the occasion. I players to get to the Presidents Cup the
think Freddie knew that with Tiger, that if first year. He said Wednesday, so they
he's healthy and he plays a couple of don't wear themselves out. You know, so
times, he's going to play good because he they're ready to go, so they're excited.
thrives under the pressure. You know, he That's a little late, but yeah, I think
makes putts that count. as big -- like the Super Bowl, those guys
When we were looking at it, we just seemed like they were at the Super
said, you know, Rickie Fowler makes Bowl for so long before the game actually
putts, Tiger Woods makes putts under
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started. No, I like the way -- I like the way yesterday and the courses are just
the points fall. I think the Presidents Cup immaculate. This is why we come here, to
might have too many points and the get a few days like this.
Walker Cup might be too compact. I like
three days. I don't know if my nerves could Q. What do you think of the Presidents
Cup process for pairings where the captains go
handle four. The players might not want to back and forth picking guys?
spread it into four. But it's worked pretty DAVIS LOVE, III: It's exciting. You
good. know, I've been there as a player, so I just
I'm still wondering which format we look at who I'm playing. I enjoyed the
should play first. You know, that's a good process with Corey from behind the
strategy thing, you know, how the course scenes of laying them out there and
should be set up, things like that. But I like seeing the surprise. It seems a lot more
the three days. intense when you're watching it, you
Q. Just a quick question on this week,
know, as an assistant captain or a captain.
Davis, as often as you've played here and When you put your four out there and you
under so many different conditions, what's it don't know what -- there's no back and
like when you get a week like this? forth. So I kind of like both of them, but it
DAVIS LOVE, III: Wow, I just seems like a little more nerve wracking the
played with Blake Adams and we were way the Ryder Cup does it.
saying I've never seen three golf courses
in this good of shape. Guys that have Q. (Inaudible)?
played a lot this year said these are the DAVIS LOVE, III: Yeah. More
best greens they've seen so far this year. strategic, but then once you put them
You don't usually hear that when you get down, it's so random. Like I drew -- Tom
to Pebble and Spyglass. I've played 27 -- Kite and I drew Seve and Jose three
this is my 27th time here. I can't -- I don't matches in a row and you just think that
think of this as a terrible weather could never ever happen. And you just
tournament in the history -- sure, we've never know what's going to happen when
had some rainouts and we've had some you have to write all four of them down
bad, but I've seen a lot of nice days out at and then just turn them in. It's pretty
Pebble and Spyglass. So it's fun to play exciting.
when it's like this. I think there's a reason why this
Now, obviously they're in a drought. tournament, the Ryder Cup is so big. It
The greens are firmer than they've ever does a lot of things right, and I wouldn't
been. The courses are in just immaculate monkey with it very much.
shape, but they've really -- since AT & T JOEL SCHUCHMANN: Davis
took it over they've really stepped Love, thank you.
everything up. The golf courses are DAVIS LOVE, III: Thank you all.
unbelievable. Now with the addition of FastScripts by ASAP Sports
Monterey Peninsula, everything they're
doing is just -- it seems like all the rough's
cut the same height now. We were
shocked today, two beautiful days in a
row. I played 13 holes on Pebble
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