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2021 Ryder Cup Predictions and More Letters from Morning Read Readers

Our readers weigh in with Ryder Cup predictions, the PGA Tour's contributions to charity and how much they like letters in Morning Read.
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We want to hear from you, the readers of SI.com and Morning Read, on anything happening in the world of golf. Send your thoughts to us at inbox@morningread.com. We read them all and include the best in upcoming articles.

Here are your Ryder Cup predictions and other thoughts on the game, the newsletter and more:

7 Reasons Europe will win, from West London

Here’s my reasons for yet another European win. I’m not biased, it’s just fact and here’s why:
1. The American team can’t seem to gel together. That’s been one of the issues in past Ryder Cup wash-ups after the loss to the Europeans and I believe it’s still not been addressed.

2. Bryson DeChambeau is a fine golfer, in interviews seems a stand-up guy and I like him. He’s polite and brings flair and a skill of his own kind to the game. The BIG however though is Brooks Koepka. He has issues with Big D and it’s too late to paper over the cracks now.

3. Koepka again. He’s admitted he can’t prep for Ryder Cup duties and it interferes with his normal prep. It will put him out of sorts. Resentment and being generally pissed doesn’t bode well for team spirit.

4. Poor old DeChambeau again. His spat with Patrick Cantlay may well have been forgotten, but there’s still history and it will bubble along even after the biennial matches. Will his quest to be long-drive champ wreck his Ryder Cup? His hands are bleeding and broken skin through endless ball hitting is probably not the best prep.

5. Koepka again (I’m not picking on him, the blokes won four majors FFS) was a stalwart on the European tour — I admire him for that alone, but the simple truth is he’s not 100% fit. Zinger called him out on it — he’s yet to respond, but he will.

6. Team and locker room morale in the Euro camp will again outweigh the individualism in the USA camp.

7. On paper, Team USA looks invincible, but will rookie errors come in to play? Experienced players like Dustin Johnson are not playing that well, then again neither is Sergio Garcia. I suspect that Justin Thomas will be solid, but Euros will win with the winning putt coming from Bernd Weisberger.

All the best,
Alan D.
West London, U.K

The USA will putt better than a suspect European team

On paper the U.S. should win in a run away but the Europeans are a gritty bunch with a lot of attitude. 

Day 1 will be close, maybe 5-3 Euros. The U.S. rebounds on Day 2 to make it 9-7 U.S. They split the singles 6-6 to make the final score 15-13 with the U.S. taking back the cup.

The downfall for the Euros is putting. Rory and Sergio miss key putts, even Rahm is off a little on his putting and Westwood struggles with his short game. Big point-winners for the U.S. are Jordan Spieth, Harris English, Patrick Cantlay and the gold medalist Xander Schauffele. This is how I see it.

Mel H.
Vancouver, Washington

Canadian roots for Team USA, even though it often ends badly

I think Europe will continue its domination of one of the highlight events in golf, unfortunately. 

I'm a Canadian, and I root for the USA during every Ryder Cup, only to be disappointed for the last 30 years (most of the time). 

The reason for my prediction is simple: lack of team cohesion and far too many distractions, e.g. Brooks vs. Bryson, Patrick Reed omission. I also don't think the weather in Wisconsin this time of the year will suit the Americans, especially those from the southern states. 

I'll use Crenshaw's words in 1999 but with a slight revision "I have a really bad feeling about this."

Mike A.
Toronto, Canada

The guys on Ryder Cup USA need to pipe down

If USA doesn't get their boys to stop whining, Europe will win because they are a TEAM.

Judy R.
Wilmington, North Carolina

This reader from Florida likes America's fresh faces

America wins! Stricker boldly picks new guys rather than sticking with the tried and true picks most would have taken. His picks bode well for future Cups as well. Go Red, White and Blue!

John S.
The Villages, Florida

The Europeans are a team. The Americans are individuals.

I'm not going to predict another European victory in the Ryder Cup, but the odds certainly favor it. But wait a minute...the odds always favor the Americans...more major victories...more players in the top 20 of the world golf rankings...etc., etc. So why do the Europeans win so much?

You could say that they putt better, and they do, but I think the reason they putt better is because they want it more. It is much more important to them than it is to the U.S. The Europeans are fired up, and regardless of differences in their backgrounds or personal friendships, they pull together as a team...every time.

It has been discussed many times, but the truth is that the Americans are a group of individuals with all of their individual concerns and priorities. This is on full display right now with Brooks' comments about how Ryder Cup week is kind of a pain in the butt for him because it causes him to have to modify his schedule. Oh, the horror! And what kind of team spirit did he show when he skipped the practice session that was supposed to be ALL of players...for the first time ever! Add to that his comment about, "I won my match...what do you want from me?" Nothing Brooks...just go over into the corner and brood like the tough guy you are.

Another individual on full display is of course Bryson. What a contrast...if he could display half of the enthusiasm for the Ryder Cup as he does for the long drive competition, he would be a force to be reckoned with. As it is, he will show up and play and I'm sure do his best, but his mind will be on the upcoming Long Drive, and his callused, bleeding hands may just have an adverse effect on his short game. But what the heck, it's only the Ryder Cup. He has more important things on his mind.

And, another comment on Bryson...he is not just "one of the guys" on the PGA Tour. He's the oddball scientist. He loves the environment with the long-drive guys. He's a celebrity and they treat him like one. He loves to hang with them and compare stats and go crazy with them when someone hits a new number. He's not incapable of team spirit...his team is just not the Ryder Cup team!

And, what better example of this individualism do we have than Tiger Woods? Tiger Woods is the master of match play. (Three consecutive U.S. Juniors followed by three consecutive U.S. Amateurs,) Ask Stephen Ames if Tiger is good at match play. And yet Tiger possesses a dismal Ryder Cup record. Why is that? Because it just never was that important to him. Sure, Tiger will deny that, but it's true. He needs motivation like everyone else, and patriotism and team spirit just isn't enough. Look what he did to Stephen Ames after Ames made a comment that riled him. Look how he performed in the recent Presidents Cup when he was the playing captain. Those matches meant something to him. I have no doubt whatsoever that over the past years when Tiger played, if Ian Poulter had come out at the beginning of the week and stated that if he was paired with Tiger in singles, he would give him a thrashing he would remember, Tiger would have punished him just as he did Stephen Ames.

Again, all of the examples just demonstrate that the Americans for the most part are just not team players and are just not motivated by playing for their country and their teammates. There are individual exceptions of course, but two or three motivated players on each team can't carry the teams to victory in the manner of the Europeans. Unless someone comes up with a way to turn the individualist Americans into team spirited players, I think we are in for many more European victories.

John A.
Cape Girardeau, Missouri

The captain needs to play his young guys

My initial prediction was heavily leaning towards our American team because of the plethora of talent each brings to the competition. But that's kind of where it stops. "Team" has no "I" in it and we definitely have some "I" egos to contend with.

Unlike the European players who I think prove it, win after win, that they can set aside their egos and play for their country.

But you can't really blame the Americans — that's just how they choose to play in their profession — once a week, meet and beat the other guys in the field and then go home.

I think if Capt. Stricker strategically plays his younger players (i.e., rookies) we may have a chance of pulling out a win for the seasons!

Cheers,

Maria M.
Atlantic Beach, Florida

Drive for show, putt for... you know

Euros win. All can make 8-foot putts consistently. Bombers don’t win. Euros can putt.

Humble opinion

Paul N.
Surfside Beach, South Carolina

Bench Brooks and Bryson until Sunday

If Stricker has the courage to bench Koepka and Bryson for all but the singles, the US wins 15-13. 

Both are great players for sure! Two of the best in the sport, but their games and attitudes about golf and THIS competition are way too individualistic and routine- based to be able to adapt to this format. 

And by recent actions and comments, they (both) clearly don’t prioritize this event. Send a message Captain Stricker! Bench ‘em please! …If not, Europe wins, yet again.

Jeff G.
Cumming, Georgia. 

The PGA Tour does indeed give a lot of money to charity

I notice that a writer from Chicago suggested that the PGA Tour should contribute money to help grow the game and to help charities throughout the country. I believe the following might be of interest to that author.

For the year 2019 alone, the Tour contributed 204.3 million dollars to a large number of charities where they operate, bringing their all time charitable contributions to $3.05 billion. These charitable contributions cover The PGA, Korn Ferry, Champions, MacKenzie (Canada), PGA Latinoamerica and PGA Series China Tours.

The PGA Tour is indeed making substantial contributions to not only grow the game of golf, but up also help an untold number of communities and people in need.

Bill B.
Jacksonville, Florida

The last word

I have found the takeover of Morning Read by SI to be extremely disappointing. The inbox at Morning Read was an almost daily lively exchange about a variety of topics — initiated by the writer(s). Now it seems the only time letters appear is when a specific topic is requested by the editors.

Previously readers expressed a variety of opinions on a variety of topics and not just which touring pro is a poopyhead or what the odds are for this weeks event and whether the ball goes too far (hint: nobody but the USGA and the R&A cares). Imagine that people were interested in discussing the 99 percent of the game that we all play rather than a laser focus on what the 1-percenters are up to.

Yes, you have good writers and I enjoy their scribblings but I receive several golf newsletters and really they all have excellent writers and they all write about the same things every week. The lively epistolary exchange among the readers of Morning Read was what set it apart.

Maybe the next topic can be: Let us know how much you love the new and improved Morning Read by SI! Or maybe that would be a fraught topic.

Please encourage your readers to write early and often on whatever topic they choose. It's what set Morning Read apart in my opinion. "Let a hundred flowers bloom; let a hundred schools of thought contend." - somebody said that!

Blaine W.
St. Paul, Minn.

Editor's note: We love to hear from you, the reader, on anything happening in the world of golf. Send your letters to us at inbox@morningread.com.