By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
Nick Price has won three majors, as well as a PLAYERS Championship. So he's got the competitive qualifications -- and then some.
None of his three children followed in his footsteps and played golf, though, so he's never gotten to play in the PNC Father-Son Challenge. Until this year, that is.
Price's son Greg, who is 22, took up the game eight months ago so now Price has a partner for the event, which will be played Dec. 12-15 at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club in Orlando.
“Greg said to me, ‘Dad, they’re having the Father/Son again and I really want to play’ and I thought that would be great,” Price said. “I’m sure it’s going to be great fun. I think we’ll laugh a lot. I just want him to enjoy it. If he enjoys it, he’ll want to do it again.”
The International Presidents Cup captain, who is an 18-time winner on TOUR, and his son will be among 20 teams vying for the Willie Park Trophy. Davis Love III and his son Dru are the defending champions.
Price says he plans to give Greg some fatherly advice.
“I’ll just tell him to focus and put his normal swing on," Price said. "It will be new ground for both of us.”
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
DUBLIN, Ohio -- Nick Price and his International Team had something special for U.S. Captain Fred Couples on the first tee at Muirfield Village before the 10th Presidents Cup got underway.
As the crowd sang "Happy Birthday," Price presented Couples with a cake made of cupcakes and decorated in the International colors of blue and gold.
"This is really nice," Couples said. "I am 54 today so its a big day for me but more importantly this is pretty special."
The Opening Ceremonies were relative brief but big on pagentry as members of the Ohio State band marched up the first fairway. The band later broke formation to let one of its most famous graduates, Jack Nicklaus, walk through the gauntlet and take the gleaming gold Presidents Cup up to the first tee of his signature creation.
"We love you Jack," someone in the crowd yelled.
Nicklaus, who captained three U.S. Teams, joined Price, Couples, PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem and former President George W. Bush for the ceremonies. Also with the group was Chad Pfeifer, who won his third striaght Warrior Open for Wounded Veterans, overseen by the Bush Institute, last month.
Other dignitatires on hand included former International Captains David Graham (1994) and Peter Thomson (1996, 1998 and 2000), as well as former PGA TOUR Commissioner Deane Beman, European Tour Commissioner George O'Grady and Joe Louis Barrow, the executive director of The First Tee.
The boisterous crowd included members of the gold-and-green clad "Fanatics" who had made their presence known in Australia two years ago. And has it happened, Columbus resident and fellow Aussie Jason Day was in the first match and the Fanatics began singing "Oh, Happy Day."
U.S. Assistant Captain Davis Love III was slightly out of uniform as the Sea Island, Ga., resident was wearing a navy cap with the Atlanta Braves' A embroidered on the front. And it didn't take the former President long to notice.
"May I ask why you're wearing that hat," said the 43rd chief executive, a former owner of the Texas Rangers, as he reached out to shake Love's hand.
Bush, who looked relaxed and was wearing the U.S. red and navy uniforms, was a popular figure at the opening ceremonies.
"Boy, do we miss you," a fan called out after the crowd chanted "43, 43" when he was introduced.
Hunter Mahan, who was playing in the first match with Brandt Snedeker, found his wife Kandi and baby daughter, Zoe, in the crowd and brought them over to Bush, a fellow Texan.
Bush slipped back into politician mode and bent over to kiss Zoe, who was born in July, then posed for pictures with the entire family.
WEDNESDAY'S COVERAGE OF CAPTAIN'S PICKS
The four Captain's Picks for this year's Presidents Cup will be announced at 2 p.m. ET Wednesday, Sept. 4, on the Golf Channel. At 2:20 p.m. ET, PGATOUR.COM will carry a live audio stream of the two captains and the picks discussing the choices.
U.S. captain Fred Couples and International captain Nick Price will each select two players to complete their 12-man rosters for their respective Presidents Cup teams. The selections will be announced at 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday.Ten players earned spots on each team through points rankings, which closed Monday.
Who do you think the captains should select? Below is a chart listing the statistics of some of the captains' top choices. Will Couples choose two veterans, or will he take 20-year-old Jordan Spieth? Or will Couples give a spot to Webb Simpson, who was bumped from the team at the 11th hour? Five of Price's 10 team members are rookies? Will he choose players in good form, or try to fill his roster with veterans? Leave your opinion in the comments below.
|11. Webb Simpson||20||25||23||0||1||0||4||T-53|
|12. Dustin Johnson||23||23||20||1||1||0||5||T-27|
|13. Jim Furyk||15||15||20||0||1||1||6||T-27|
|22. Jordan Spieth||10||28||21||1||2||0||8||T-4|
|11. Thongchai Jaidee||N/A||58||18*||0||1||1||5||DNP|
|12. Marc Leishman||58||59||22||0||0||0||4||T-16|
|13. Tim Clark||80||60||20||0||1||0||3||MC|
|14. Brendon de Jonge||26||70||28||0||0||0||4||T-9|
|18. Geoff Ogilvy||104||94||19||0||1||0||1||DNP|
|22. K.J. Choi||73||106||24||0||0||0||2||T-41|
Note: players listed by ranking in team points; DBC finish is finish at Deutsche Bank Championship; *-European Tour events.
By Sean Martin, PGATOUR.COM
Fred Couples and Nick Price both have difficult decisions to make by Sept. 4 -- the day they'll make their two captain's picks for the respective Presidents Cup teams -- but for different reasons. Couples, the United States captain, has an excess of experienced players sitting outside the top 10 in his team's standings. Price, the International captain, is looking to add veterans to his roster, but may have to scroll farther down his rankings than he would like.
Couples also must consider the case of Spieth, the talented 20-year-old who won earlier this year. Picking Spieth may require passing over an experienced player, but Couples mentioned Spieth multiple times while discussing potential captain’s picks in a Thursday news conference. Spieth, who turned pro in December, is No. 26 in the United States’ rankings and would need to be one of Couples’ two picks to earn his roster spot.
The top 10 players in each side's points ranking automatically qualify for their respective team Sept. 2, after play is complete at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Couples and Price will each make two captain's selections two days later.
U.S. stalwarts Steve Stricker, Dustin Johnson, Jim Furyk and Bubba Watson all entered the Deutsche Bank Championship outside the top 10 in the U.S. standings, with two more experienced players, Webb Simpson and Zach Johnson, holding the ninth and 10th spots.
“They're all right there,” Couples said Thursday from the Champions Tour’s Shaw Charity Classic. “So Nos. 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, and then I think Jordan Spieth's a little higher than that, those are the guys that are going to make it.
“I have a tough job picking that because there's so many good players in that little category, but at the same time I have an easy job because whoever I pick are going to be two quality players. If you look at that list, they're all Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup players; Jim Furyk, Zach Johnson, Steve Stricker, Dustin Johnson, those guys have played on several teams. The only other name out there that would be a little higher would be Jordan Spieth, he's had a phenomenal year.”
Spieth, 20, won the John Deere Classic in July. His seven top-10s are tied for fourth-most on TOUR. He entered the Deutsche Bank Championship at No. 9 in the FedExCup.
Price may go farther down his team’s rankings for his two picks. "The problem that we do have is that we don't have a lot of experience," Price said. Tim Clark, who's played three Presidents Cups, is 11th in the standings and a potential captain's pick. Geoff Ogilvy (20th in the International Team standings) and K.J. Choi (23rd) also have played three Presidents Cups apiece. Every player between Clark and Choi, except Ogilvy, would be a Presidents Cup rookie, though.
“I'm really sad for K.J. because I know how much he wanted to play this year,” Price said. “He just played so indifferently and he's back (at 23rd) on our list, which is he should be much higher than that. But he also at the meeting that we had in Ohio spoke with a lot of passion, which the younger guys, you know, took notice of.”
Price will be at the Deutsche Bank Championship on Monday to get input from his players about the captain’s picks. He also will seek the counsel of his assistant captains.
“I'm going to go meet them face‑to‑face and ask the guys to … give me 10 minutes before or after (they play). I have a couple of questions I want to ask the guys, who they feel they would pick. I'll keep a record of all the guys, what they said. I'll go meet with my co‑captains, we'll go through the whole due process of doing it and then make the picks on Wednesday. I'll take into consideration the experience, do we need more experience on the team, do we need exuberance or whatever.
It's a tough situation, but there's going to be a couple people I'm sure who are going to be disappointed, but the decision that we make will come from 15 guys or 16 guys. It will be captain, three co‑captains and the 12 players or 10 players will make that decision. It's not going to be just me or my captains, it will be a team effort.”
Photo by Pete Souza/White House
Presidents Cup Captains Fred Couples (United States) and Nick Price (International) made a White House visit on Tuesday and met with President Barack Obama, the honorary chairman of The Presidents Cup. Click here for the full story
Fred Couples and Nick Price recall a funny story from their playing days on the PGA TOUR. Couples asked Price if he would like to swap caddies before a round, resulting in a classic 'Boom Boom' anecdote.
”Obviously with the dynamics of our team, I felt it really important to have someone from Asia involved in it,” Price said during a news conference in Dublin, Ohio, site of next year’s Presidents Cup.
Maruyama was a member of the International Presidents Cup Team in 1998 and 2000. He posted a 5-0-0 record in the 1998 matches, helping lead the International Team to its lone outright victory in The Presidents Cup.
Maruyama is one of four players in event history to go 5-0 (Mark O'Meara, 1996; Tiger Woods, 2009; Jim Furyk, 2011). His overall record in two appearances is 6-2-0. Maruyama has won three events on the PGA TOUR and 10 on the Japan Golf Tour, most recently the 2009 Golf Nippon Series JT Cup.
In the 2011 Presidents Cup in Melbourne, Australia, four of the 12 members of the International team were from Asia – Koreans K.J. Choi, K.T. Kim and Y.E. Yang, and Japan’s Ryo Ishikawa. Every International team except the 2005 squad has had at least one player from Asia.
Price said he intends to lean on Maruyama for advice with the pairings.
“He'll help me, I know, with some of the decision making,” Price said. “There could be two Koreans, two Japanese -- there could be four Asians on the team. I really felt he would have a better understanding of how to pair the guys.”
Plus, added Price, Maruyama will be an asset in the team room.
“He has a smile and a demeanor about him that is just second to none,” Price said. “He loves to joke. He loves to tell stories. He loves -- he's just got a passion for life.”
Price’s other two Captain’s assistants are from his native Zimbabwe – Mark McNulty and Tony Johnstone.
U.S. Captain Fred Couples tabbed Jay Haas as one of his assistants, and will announce the other two at a later date.
Fred Couples and Nick Price will serve as captains of the U.S. and International Teams, respectively, for the 2013 Presidents Cup 2013 at Muirfield Village. Price will be a Captain for the first time, while Couples will lead the Americans for the third time.
You thoughts? Will Price be able to lead the Internationals to victory? Will Couples continue to enjoy success? Leave your comments below.