Max Homa Podcast on the 2023 Ryder Cup
Fresh off his debut Ryder Cup appearance we welcome The Pro, Max Homa, back to the pod for the first of undoubtedly several postmortem episodes recapping the events at Marco Simone. Max takes us through the emotions of the week and during the American rally on Sunday, his partnership with Brian Harman, the mood in the team room after Friday and Saturday, his reaction to the narrative around Patrick Cantlay and Xander Schauffele, and the path forward for the US Ryder Cup team in Bethpage and beyond.
Here’s a sneak peek of the convo with Max... (Note: Full answer edited for clarity and conciseness.)
D.J.: The thing that's on my mind is the six-seven footer on 18 during the singles match. And for anybody who didn't see, it's kinda a shortish par five. You hit your second shot down in the eyelash of the bunker down there on 18. Just take me through from there until the time that the putt hit the bottom of the cup.
Max Homa: Well it's actually funny you start at the end because I was convinced the first tee would be the most nervous I've ever, ever, ever been. And I was so wrong. On the first tee to that moment, I thought I got better as the week went on about like controlling my nerves. It was laughable how nervous I was on the first tee. I felt so calm until right when I stepped into the tee shot, my left leg went nuts. I told Joe, it's like when you're doing a wall sit and you do it a little too long. And he always jokes, he goes, "It's so funny what you feel, 'cause you look so like poised and calm." And I'm like, "Dude, I just like lost control of my body, but I hit the fairway." So I was like, "I'm gonna take that with me."
Fast forward that to the last three holes. That last hole is such a blur to me. When we got home, I nerded out and I told Lacey, I have to watch the last hole in real-time 'cause I don't remember a lot of it. Like I remember what I felt like, I don't remember -- just a lot of it was so blurry. I remember little things. Matt made me putt a 12-inch putt -- it was probably longer than that, but 18 inch put on 17. And I was nervous but I was never missing it.
...and in college, I missed the putt. I three putted my last hole of my collegiate career to lose to Thomas Poeters in match play of the team event. And I was so despondent for like 40 hours. I remember flying to the U.S. Open qualifier and I remember being on the plane saying, I don't know if it will be tomorrow a week from now, a month from now or 10 years from now. I want that putt again.
Like please let me have that putt again. I do not want to end my golfing career without getting an opportunity to show that I can do that. I know I can do that. It just so happened that the next day I had seven feet to get into a playoff or to keep a playoff going to get into the U.S. Open and I made it. And I remember being over that putt saying, "Bubba, you asked for this. Like you could be nervous, but you asked for this exactly. So you better at least relish the opportunity." And I remember Matt missed and I had seven feet and I remember saying, "You asked, you wanted this, so like flip the nerves. You're, you're nervous but you're not scared. Like you asked for this exact moment and you're getting it in the biggest way." But it was just crazy.
I was basically telling everybody you dream your whole life as every single golfer ever has of making a putt to win the Ryder Cup or making a putt to win the Masters or the U.S. Open. I have never dreamt of making a putt to not lose the Ryder Cup. That was a very different feeling. And I had such a good week personally on the golf course that I knew I would be labeled the choker and it just didn't feel like a fair thing. But I remember I really turned my brain on: You, you wanted this, this is a very cool opportunity.
But I lost full control of my body. I can't believe watching it that you can't see my legs shaking. I couldn't feel anything, like my legs were like full-blown vibrating. Like I had 50 phones tied to my legs and everyone was calling me.
It was a wild. And I, I, I watched it like, like I said last night, I just don't know how I made it. And that motherf***er was right in the goddamn middle. Like it was the best putt ever. It was crazy.