U.S. team captain Fred Couples surprised many Wednesday by selecting Webb Simpson and Jordan Spieth over more experienced golfers for his 2013 Presidents Cup roster.
Couples announced his selections on the Golf Channel.
Spieth, 20, is enjoying a breakout rookie season after beginning 2013 with no tour status. He ranks 22nd in President's Cup points, eighth in the FedEx Cup standings after tying for fourth at last week's Deutsche Bank tourney and has outplayed other candidates including Jim Furyk, Dustin Johnson and Bubba Watson.
Spieth's whirlwind year has also included becoming the youngest player to win on Tour in 82 years at the John Deere Classic, earning his first entries into the British Open and PGA Championship, and a runner-up finish at the Wyndham Championship.
From the Golf Channel:
"I'm super stoked," said Spieth. "I'm happy I woke up this morning and it wasn't a dream."
Couples said he had help selecting Spieth but Simpson was one of his choices early on. Simpson was bumped from the top 10 to the 11th positions over the weekend, but Couples wanted him on the team.
"Webb was going to be on this team the whole time," said Couples, in his third year as captain, "but I had great help from my players and probably all the people in the United States to pick Jordan Spieth. I'm going with the young guy. Our whole team is excited. Jordan has had an incredible year, and he deserves to be on the team."
Unlike Spieth, Simpson has Presidents Cup experience, finishing 3-2 in 2011.
Couples' announcement quickly made the social media rounds, as players and fans reacted to the news that Spieth and Simpson had made the U.S. team, including teammate Zach Johnson.