749 - Sunday Ryder Cup Recap

Show Notes is a weekly summary of what went down on the Sunday edition of the No Laying Up podcast. Want the TLDR and every reason to listen? A recap of the recap, if you will! Words and research by Jordan Perez.

What went down: Molto bene, Team Europe! Luke Donald’s squad reclaimed the Ryder Cup on home soil at Marco Simone, holding off a much too-late charge from a pesky Team USA, 16.5-11.5. It seemed like an outright decimation was in store after Friday’s sweep, but Saturday’s Four-Ball session and some red on the board on Sunday gave the Americans a sliver of hope before Ryder Cup-clinching king Tommy Fleetwood won…partly off of a concession from Rickie Fowler? Yeah, weird.

Buckle up, because we’ve got a spicy Ryder Cup recap to unpack. Soly, D.J. and KVV spent the week on the grounds and today called in noted Team Europe stan TC to celebrate the Vision Fund’s enormous victory.

(6:00) The guys start by commending the Team Europe glow-up – and how Rory’s Bethpage prediction might not be so farfetched. Unity and selflessness stand out here. But how dare anyone question how close Team USA was, reminds TC, quoting Steve Stricker’s quote retweet of Jamie Weir’s report.

Indeed, the inseparable locker room had James Harden-level malcontents running amok in the locker room (looking at you, Xander and P). D.J. notes that the result of Sunday’s team-wide hat protest wasn’t convincing, either.

(18:00) TC does not hold back on calling out Soly for doubting Team Europe! Soly is terrified and Chef TC’s kitchen is on fire.

The Task Force, much like the Roman Empire, is problematic for various reasons. This feels like an utter and much-needed collapse. Like Caesar, they have seemingly embraced a short-sighted, stubborn mentality that spread throughout the locker room. Stop telling us how close you are–we see right through it, like people who decorate their Instagram with friends they despise.

(30:00) Team USA’s foursomes record this year is glaring. KVV pulls up a specific Justin Ray tweet that illustrates its historical context/. Maybe practicing it wouldn’t be such a bad idea.

The crew lay into Xander and Patrick just a little bit more before KVV details his chat with Stefan Schauffele, revealing Stefan’s true feelings about paying players in the Ryder Cup and Jay Monahan. (Note: Since the podcast recording, Tom Kershaw from The Times reported that the PGA of America threatened to kick Xander off of the team due to a contractual dispute)

Patrick 2.0 (Reed to Cantlay) embraced his antihero role in the Ryder Cup – and backed up his alleged issues with some serious play.

Before KVV dips, he addresses his viral cameo in the ZJ TV interview.

(45:30) So – do the players have a point about getting paid to play the Ryder Cup? Maybe, but it doesn’t seem like they went about it the right way at all. There’s certainly some question about where the money does go – but Soly argues the level of publicity the event gives is a huge boost in itself.

(51:30) Let’s shed some positive light on the event – TC goes into his favorite moments from the Europe squad, and the guys segue into the best moments from Sunday singles. Tommy-lad had a legendary point-clinching moment, and Max Homa’s character development thrived from taking that unplayable and the resulting sequence. The guys get into the nitty-gritty of every single match.

(1:07:00) They then issue their individual Ryder Cup grades…

* = Lacks objectivity but dropped solid points.

Team Europe

(1:07:20) Ludvig Aberg (2-2-0)

TC: B-*

Soly: B+ or B…

D.J.: B

Soly never picks one. He opens it up by saying he gives more weight to earlier matches but sounds like that 9&7 win made quite the impression on the Team USA guy. Still, I can’t believe that he not only gave Ludvig a better grade than TC, but also, that Soly is even becoming a Ludvig believer in the first place. TC rejoices in the background!

(1:10:10) Matt Fitzpatrick (1-2-0)


Soly: B-

D.J.: C+

IS it the best yet to come, TC? Or is this just who Matt Fitzpatrick is in the Ryder Cup? It’s not a bad start, but it’s still too early to tell.

(1:11:20) Tommy Fleetwood (3-1-0)

TC: A+*

Soly: A-

D.J.: A-

No notes, just greatness.

(1:11:49) Tyrell Hatton (3-0-1)

TC: A+

Soly: A

D.J.: A

No losses, TC. Why not an extra plus?

(1:12:35) Nicolai Højgaard (0-2-1)

TC: No grade? “Feels like Meronk could have come in and been the same guy.”

Soly: D

D.J.: C-

(1:14:44) Viktor Hovland (3-1-1)

TC: Valedictorian

Soly: A

D.J.: A+

I see a likeability curve has been given to Hovland. I can’t argue with that.

(1:15:30) Shane Lowry (1-1-1)

TC: B+

Soly: B

D.J.: C or C-

I’m sensing a pattern of either extremely generous or tough grading from D.J.

(1:16:35) Bob MacIntyre (2-0-1)

TC: Pass

Soly: No grade? “I really don’t know what to do here.”

D.J.: A

Anti-establishment Big Shot Bob choosing to roll with Pass/Fail just about sums up his Ryder Cup experience.

(1:17:05) Rory (Rodrigo) McIlroy (4-1-0)

TC: A+

Soly: A+

D.J.: A+

The class president will always avoid disciplinary action from the professors, especially when he’s the victim. He took his Saturday spat and came out better from it.

(1:19:44) Jon Rahm (2-0-2)

TC: No grade?

Soly A

D.J.: A

A core piece and an incredible player this week. Major contributor to a high-quality golf product!

(1:22:40) Justin Rose (1-1-1)

TC: A-

Soly: B+

D.J.: A-

Absentee to star student glow-up! Set a great example for his peers.

(1:23:40) Sepp Straka (1-2-0)

TC: B-

Soly: C-

D.J.: C

Is Soly diverting from his scale? Matt Fitzpatrick got a B- with the same record.

Team USA

(1:25:45) Sam Burns (1-2-0)

TC: F, later corrected to a D-

Soly: D

D.J.: D+

Not a moving captain’s pick.

(1:27:04) Patrick Cantlay (2-2-0)

TC: 1200 SAT score (800 on math, 400 on verbal)

Soly: B-

D.J.: B-

The professors aren’t pleased with his attendance record and inability to show work, but they’re impressed by his genius when he applies himself. Upon new evidence, Cantlay’s score has been thrown out due to cheating on his SAT (being 2.5 holes behind).

(1:28:40) Wyndham Clark (1-1-1)


Soly: D+.

D.J.: C- or D+

Bombed the final exam by being the worst in strokes gained all week and getting beat in the anchor match.

(1:30:40) Rickie Fowler (0-2-0)


Soly: D-

D.J.: I

Passes Professor Soly’s class by just one point. A last-minute fight doesn’t grant you much favoritism! What on Earth was that concession?

(1:33:00) Brian Harman (2-2-0)

TC: D+

Soly: C

D.J.: C-

Kinda mid. Carried by Homa. Ok, yeah, maybe I did call out Soly when he said Harman didn’t deserve a spot on the team. He’s been boasting about his correct take for days. I was right at the time. Hindsight is 20/20. Onward.

(1:35:20) Max Homa (3-1-1)


Soly: A

D.J.: A

Oh no. Considering the scale, Max’s grades are grounds for worst take. See further below.

(1:36:30) Brooks Koepka (1-1-1)

TC: D+

Soly: D

D.J.: C or C-

Only showing up to gym class. Turning in homework late in a singles win over Ludvig.

(1:39:05) Collin Morikawa (1-3-0)

TC: F, later curved to a D-

Soly: D-

D.J.: D-

Pantsed, says Professor TC! Started the semester poorly and ended it poorly.

(1:40:50) Xander Schauffele (1-3-0)


Soly: D-

D.J.: D-

Poor behavior. Hanging around the Cantlay clique too much.

(1:41:40) Scottie Scheffler (0-2-2)

TC: D+

Soly: D+

D.J.: D+

Failed the midterm and grinded out the last month of the semester. Making some adjustments, specifically to the putter, but should probably take a gap semester.

(1:43:30) Jordan Spieth (0-2-2)


Soly: D-

D.J.: D-

A newborn gets you some grace but perhaps reconsider the timing of your commitments. The baby. Not the Ryder Cup.

(1:47:25) Justin Thomas (1-2-1)

TC: No grade? “Showed he gave a f*ck.”

Soly: D

D.J.: D+ or C-

Carried his partner Spieth multiple times. In a change of events, the least problematic captain’s pick.

(1:52:20) Captain Johnson was expelled from school. Just a whole lot of absolutely nothing. But how can the United States inspire each other? Scrimmage against the Walker Cup team? Start ‘em young, radicalize the youth, suggests D.J. Players taking over a month off was…a choice. It’s not how you’d prepare for a major, notes TC.

Luke Donald’s captaincy was transformational, points out Cody. Servant leadership fails if you have a weak link. More diagnosing of what Team USA needs to do post-Marco Simone.

(2:09:50) Soly is not fully walking back his Marco Simone take but stands by his take that he enjoys it as a spectating venue.

The guys interrupt this post-mortem to analyze Brooks’s Instagram post.

(2:12:40) Some miscellaneous topics. The British fans–I mean, journos, and their cheering in the press box. This leads into a fan decorum tangent. And Spieth and Thomas aren’t it!

(2:20:50) Hamsterdam time! We saw more golf from Big Tone and Annika in their State Street Global Advisors ad, according to TC. Nightmare coverage. A focus on blowout matches instead of matches that thickened the plot. An Azinger roast, and his obsession with clickbait articles. No TV exec is safe from the often confusing and delayed broadcast.

TC finally reveals to the public what happened with Tommy Roy at Pebble Beach.

If this is our only option, why make us suffer with a lazy product?

(2:37:00) Big shouts to Si Woo Kim and Sunjae Im for winning the gold medal for South Korea in the Asian Games. That exempts them from their country’s mandatory military service.

(This live show ended before the LPGA’s Walmart Arkansas Championship, but shoutouts to Lexi Thompson and Linnea Strom were made.)

TC asks that Europe do something about its unfortunate uniforms.

Shoutout to the on-site crews for Solheim and the Ryder Cup. The past two weeks have been a blast. The live shows are signing off for the rest of the year, but the recap pods will still be around!

Best take: (45:30) I don’t love the cliched “soul” of the Ryder Cup stuff. It’s a professional sporting event at the end of the day, and if the past two years have taught us anything, professional golfers are greedy! I think Cantlay’s alleged protest is super entitled in his approach, but this is very worst person you know has a good point-esque.

The Ryder Cup, on all accounts, is transactional – and the powers that be profit off of participation. Give them an appearance fee – reward the winning team with a generous one. (Like the system the NBA uses for its All-Star games).

This one goes to TC!

Worst take: (1:35:20) We’re really giving Max just As all around? No extra credit? He carried the failing group project!!! This is grounds for an A+. Total injustice here. An opening foursomes loss is not great, but he is the star pupil on Team USA. He really risked it all by taking the unplayable and clutching it out.

I know this is a super marginal gripe, but there are players on Europe who got similar marks just because they were on the winning team. One guy can’t win the Ryder Cup, but Max showed up, played well for most of the event and acted like he cared. That’s more than we can say for most of Team USA. I’m awarding all of you with worst take, simply because I think Max deserves more flowers. Come on.

Mea culpas: I knew from the first live show I’d be writing the longest mea culpa section to date. Lots of fedora passes. Here we go:

(8:50) D.J.’s relentless bullying of Team Rose.

(1:03:00) TC apologizes to the Obanites for not giving Big Shot Bob more props in his anticlimactic undefeated Ryder Cup journey.

(1:31:00) Soly apologizes for advocating for Rickie’s place on the team despite Rickie’s unfavorable Ryder Cup record. Admits he has to re-evaluate his own process!

(1:52:50) Soly apologizes for his lack of apprehension about ZJ going into the Ryder Cup – that the system would hold up past the captain!


(41:55) (On Cantlay) “I’ve never seen someone look so much like the emperor from Gladiator. He looked like Joaquin Phoenix when he came out – just giving these weird back-handed waves.” -D.J.

(59:15)There’s no grit with Collin. It was like watching a small boy out there against Hovland.” -TC

(1:51:50) “I think Europe’s dogs rose to the occasion and barked loudly and attacked people. U.S.’s dogs tried to bark and got caught up by animal control.” -TC

(2:01:18) (On ZJ)  “Everything was just mealy-mouthed bullshit from him. The interviews on-site, in the pressers, it was the least inspirational leadership I’ve ever seen. I know I’m rooting for the Europeans, but it made me embarrassed to be an American.” -TC

In case you missed it…

This is more for record-keeping purposes because old takes aren’t off-limits – but here’s what was said Friday-Saturday of the Ryder Cup live shows:


  • (59:50) TC claiming Team Europe will win at Bethpage (before Rory did!)
  • (1:06:55) TC’s lifetime truce with Team Rose
  • (1:26:00) Soly still advocating for Rickie over Keegan…
  • (1:42:00) TC saying he will cut the cord (please don’t, the Hamsterdam depends on it)


  • 7:00 Hat-gate commentary
  • 43:40 The beginning of Soly coming around on Ludvig
  • 1:03:40 Noted Team Europe stan Randy’s concern for the presence of the horses in the back in Singles. Turns out, they were indeed there.
  • 1:40:30 ZJ convincing Spieth to hit 3-wood over driver on 16 and landing 50 yards short in the water

Referenced works:

(8:28) Steve Stricker quote tweet

(31:15) Justin Ray foursomes record tweet

Tom Kershaw on Xander

(1:31:20) Randy’s Rickie tweet

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