"U-S-A, U-S-A!"

Here are the Essential Facts for the 43rd Ryder Cup

History: “First played in 1927, the Ryder Cup is named after English businessman Samuel Ryder, who donated the trophy. Originally a competition between Great Britain and the U.S, it expanded in 1979 to include continental Europe. The U.S. has won 26 of 42 events with two ties. Since 1979, the Europeans have won 11 of 20 matches with one tie.”

Date: Friday, Sept. 24 to Sunday, Sept. 26, 2021

Venue: Whistling Straits, Haven, WI.

Par-Yardage: 71, 7,390 yards

Format/Scoring: The Ryder Cup is divided into five sessions -- Since the US is the host, it will be allowed to pick the order of the four sessions after the opening session of foursomes.  

DAY 1: Four Foursomes (alternate shot) and Four Four-ball matches (one best ball). 

DAY 2: Four Foursomes and Four Four-ball Matches. 

DAY 3: 12 Singles Matches 


On paper, the U.S. Ryder Cup team should win this year’s competition easily. BLOWOUT CITY! Just look at the World Rankings:

U.S. Players

World Ranking/

Majors Won

European Players

World Ranking/

Majors Won

Dustin Johnson#

No. 2/2

Jon Rahm#

No. 1/1

Collin Morikawa# R

No. 3/2

Viktor Hovland# R

No. 14

Patrick Cantlay# R

No. 4

Rory McIlroy#

No. 15/4

Xander Schauffele+ R

No. 5

Tyrrell Hatton#

No. 19

Justin Thomas#

No. 6/1

Paul Casey#

No. 24

Bryson DeChambeau#

No. 7/1

Matt Fitzpatrick#

No. 27

Tony Finau+

No. 9

Lee Westwood#

No. 35

Brooks Koepka#

No. 10/4

Tommy Fleetwood#

No. 37

Harris English+ R  

No. 11

Shane Lowry+ R  

No. 42/1

Jordan Spieth+

No. 13/3

Sergio Garcia+

No. 43/1

Daniel Berger+ R

No. 16

Ian Poulter+

No. 50

Scottie Scheffler+ R

No. 21

Bernd Wiesberger# R  

No. 63

#=Qualifier  +=Captain’s Pick  R=Ryder Cup Rookie 


Of course, recent history tells us that the European TEAM somehow manages to outwit, outplay, outputt and, yes, outlast our more independently-minded American lads. 





Europe 17 ½  - 10 ½

Le Golf National (France)


U.S. 17 – 11

Hazeltine National GC (MN)


Europe 16 ½  - 11 ½

Gleneagles Hotel (Scotland)


Europe 14 ½  - 13 ½

Medinah CC No. 3 (IL)


Europe 14 ½  - 13 ½

Celtic Manor (Wales)


U.S. 16 ½ -  11 ½ 

Valhalla Golf Club (KY)


Europe 18 ½  - 9 ½  

K Club (Ireland) 


Europe 18 ½  - 9 ½  

Oakland Hills CC (MI)


Europe 15 ½  - 12 ½

The Belfry (England) 

Over the last nine Ryder Cups, the U.S. has won only two and many of our best recent players have more losses than wins: Stewart Cink (4 Cup appearances: 5-7-7), Bryson DeChambeau (1 Cup: 0-3-0), Rickie Fowler (4 Cups: 3-7-5), Jim Furyk (9 Cups: 9-17-4), Dustin Johnson (4 Cups: 4-7-9), Matt Kuchar (4 Cups: 6-7-2), Phil Mickelson (12 Cups: 14-18-16), Steve Stricker (3 Cups: 3-7-1), Bubba Watson (4 Cups: 4-10-0) and Tiger Woods (8 Cups: 13-17-3) 

There is some good news for the U.S. Four of this year’s players do have winning Cup records: Tony Finau (2018 Cup: 2-1-0), Brooks Koepka (2016 & 2018 Cups: 4-3-1), Jordan Spieth (2014, 2016 & 2018 Cups: 7-5-2) and Justin Thomas (2018 Cup: 4-1-0). 


Currently, the Caesars Sportsbook* has the U.S. team as the favorites, going off at -187 (risk $187 to win $100). The Europeans are listed as the +188 underdogs, while a tie would return +1200. I know where I am putting my money this year, but what do the experts think? Here are a few examples:

SEAN MARTIN (PGATOUR.COM senior editor): The U.S. has outscored Europe, 47-37, in the past three Ryder Cups on U.S. soil. That’s not a coincidence. It’s been since 2008 that the U.S. has taken a more hands-on approach to course setup, and Whistling Straits will be setup to play into the hands of the home team’s big bombers. USA, 16-12. 

MIKE GLASSCOTT (PGATOUR.COM fantasy contributor): Cool weather on a links layout sounds right up the European's alley! The chemistry of the "underdogs" is never in question regardless of their individual rankings. Europe, 14.5-13.5

JOHN HAWKINS (Sports Illustrated): The difference between patriotic optimism and common sense can be rather glaring in certain instances, but this U.S. squad has too much young talent -- most of it unaffected by all those previous American losses -- to think it will fail again on home turf. It would be a different story if these matches were held in Europe, where the youthful Yanks would be a lot more vulnerable to the intangibles.

JAMIE BRAIDWOOD (Independent newspaper, UK): The odds in the UK are USA - 8/15; Europe 15/8; Tie 11/1. USA are undoubtedly boast the strongest team on paper, featuring a number of major champions in Collin Morikawa, Brooks Koepka, Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth and players who are arguably coming off the best season of their careers, such as Patrick Cantlay, Xander Schauffele and Tony Finau. Questions remain over the USA’s team spirit, which was the big talking point following their 2018 defeat at Le Golf National, and Europe have shown in recent years that their collective has been greater than the sum of their individual parts. It’s still hard to look past a USA victory, however, who look set to reclaim the Ryder Cup on home soil.

CAMERON MORFIT (PGATOUR.COM): In addition to a surging Tony Finau, Scheffler and the other American rookies save the day, signaling a bright new era for U.S. Ryder and Presidents Cup sides.  USA, 14.5-13.5

ME (Allan): The U.S. team will win for five reasons: 1. More talent. 2. The Europeans are getting old (34.6 years old vs 29.1). 3. The U.S. is due. 4. Captain Steve Stricker has had a great deal of input about the course set-up. 5. The hometown fans. USA by 3 -- 15 ½ to 12 ½. Get your bets down now!

*What Do the + and – Mean in Sports Betting?

The – and + on a sports betting line indicates both your prospective payout and whether you’re betting on the favorite or the underdog.

Negative numbers signify the favorite on the betting line. The negative number indicates how much you’d need to bet to win $100.

If the number is positive, you’re looking at the underdog, and the number refers to the amount of money you’ll win if you bet $100. 

Play Away!

Allan Stark

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