By T.J. Auclair, Interactive Producer
Tom Watson, captain of the 2014 U.S. Ryder Cup team, will make a major announcement Wednesday that will be streamed live exclusively on RYDECRCUP.com beginning at 8 AM ET.
Making the announcement from Kansas City, Watson will reveal his selection process to determine the 2014 U.S. team that will face Europe at Gleneagles in Scotland, Sept. 26-28.
Until the 2008 Ryder Cup at Valhalla, the U.S. Ryder Cup selection process went like this:
Players accumulated points over a two-year period beginning in January of the non-Ryder Cup year through the PGA Championship of the Ryder Cup year. The top 10 players on points automatically earned a spot on the team, while the captain was allowed two wild-card selections.
U.S. Captain Paul Azinger changed that process for the 2008 matches. Under Azinger's format (also adopted by U.S. captains Corey Pavin in 2010 and Davis Love III in 2012), the leading eight players on the Ryder Cup Points list earned a spot on the squad, leaving room for four captain's picks.
Also under Azinger's method, in the non-Ryder Cup year players gained points only on money made in the major championships. In the Ryder Cup year, points were gained for money earned in all official PGA Tour events through the PGA Championship and players earned double points for money earned in the Ryder Cup-year majors.
Watson, taking his second turn as U.S. captain, was the last victorious U.S. captain on foreign soil, when he led the Americans to victory way back in in 1993 at the Belfry in Sutton Coldfield, England.
Since then, the Ryder Cup hasn't been kind to the U.S.
The Europeans, who will be led by captain Paul McGinley in 2014, have captured seven of the last nine Ryder Cups played since 1993, including an astounding come-from-behind victory at Medinah last fall.
Europe trailed the U.S. 10-6 at Medinah entering Sunday's singles matches before rallying to an improbable 14 1/2 - 13 1/2 triumph. That equaled the 1999 U.S. team at The Country Club in Brookline (Mass.) for the largest comeback in Ryder Cup history.
In December, The PGA of America appointed Watson as the U.S. captain for a couple of reasons that stand out - aside from being the last U.S. captain to win an away match, Watson is also a legend in Scotland, where he claimed four of his five Open Championships.
While raucous home crowds always play a factor in a Ryder Cup, it's believed by many that Watson's presence as captain will at least level the playing field a little bit for his team.
Will Watson stick to Azinger's selection process? Will he revert to the old process with two captain's picks? Will he create his own process all together?
Return to RYDERCUP.com on Wednesday at 8 AM ET to find out.
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