Tiger Woods was always going to be the biggest story at the Presidents Cup; Fred Couples made sure of that when he decided to announce more than a month prior to finalizing his team that Woods would be a part of the event, regardless of where he stood in the standings.
Since the announcement was made, we've seen a handful of high profile names come out and question the decision to put a struggling Woods on the team. But despite the criticism, Couples has not wavered one bit from his initial opinion that the former No. 1 was a worth pick.
Couples seems to have a lot of faith in Woods, but that still doesn't mean he's not trying to find other ways to make sure Woods is in a good frame of mind when he steps on the first tee on November 17th. After Michael Jordan decided to step down from his post as assistant captain at the Presidents Cup, Couples went out and tabbed John Cook to be his right-hand man.
The move seemed like a smart one. Couples and Cook were good friends, and the new assistant captain had a good relationship with the rest of the players on the team -- most notably, Tiger Woods.
One Wednesday, Couples admitted that while Cook would have "probably" been his pick all along, the main reason he brought him on in the first place was to help the one player that needs a confidence boost: Tiger Woods.
"I felt like John and Tiger are very close, and that would help Tiger as much as any of the other guys," Couples said during his press conference at the Charles Schwab Cup Championship.
Cook even admitted that while he's happy to be a part of the team, his main reason for being there in the first place is to do whatever it takes to have Tiger Woods ready to go.
"[Woods] just texted me and said, 'Congrats. Really excited to have you aboard.' I said, 'I'll do whatever you want me to do," Cook said. "Get you water, get your energy bars, you know, whatever.' That's going to be my job."
Honestly, I have no problem with the Cook pick. I think he'll make a great assistant captain during the event. But the way Couples and Cook have gone about this whole announcement makes it appear that the only thing that matters at the moment is how Tiger's feeling.
If Couples was trying to add some extra scrutiny to the pick by bringing Cook abroad to help Tiger, as well as heaping more pressure on Woods, well, he's doing a pretty good job of making this all about one man.
The President Cup may be a team event, but if Couples continues to keep Tiger front and center, we may just find out there's an "I" in team, after all.
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- Tiger Woods
- Fred Couples
- John Cook