In the two months since a stunning loss in the Ryder Cup at Medinah (Ill.), the PGA of America talked about doing things differently when selecting its next captain.
Tom Watson certainly would break the mold.
Golf Digest reported on its website Tuesday night that the PGA of America plans to pick Watson, celebrated worldwide as an eight-time major champion and revered in Scotland where he won four of his five British Open titles.
"We look forward to sharing the news of the 2014 Ryder Cup captain on Thursday," PGA spokesman Julius Mason said when asked for comment.
The PGA of America will introduce its next captain Thursday morning during a segment on the "Today" show on NBC, the longtime broadcast partner at the Ryder Cup.
Watson will be 65 when the Ryder Cup is played at Gleneagles, Scotland, making him by oldest captain in U.S. history. Sam Snead was 57 when he was captain in 1969.
Watson says he has not been to a Ryder Cup since he last was captain in 1993 at The Belfry, which also was the last time the Americans won in Europe. And his relationship with Tiger Woods is much like how the weather can be in Scotland in the fall -- cold and damp. He'd be the first repeat captain since Jack Nicklaus in 1987 on his home course of Muirfield Village (Ohio).
Watson said last weekend at the Australian Open that it would be a "great honor if I got tapped on the shoulder," though he said he had not spoken to the PGA of
The organization risks some fallout.
By taking a veteran of Watson's age would be to overlook Larry Nelson for the second time. Nelson is a three-time major champion -- twice at the PGA Championship. He had a 9-3-1 record in the Ryder Cup. At least two former captains lobbied on behalf of Nelson, who was in line to be a captain in the 1990s.
"I do not have a ticket to New York, so apparently it's not going to be me," Nelson said on Golf Channel's "Morning Drive" show Wednesday. "It's disappointing, certainly not devastating."
He's scheduled to play in the Father-Son Challenge pro-am Thursday and Friday in Orlando, Fla.
Europe isn't expected to announce its captain until January at the earliest. Darren Clarke and Paul McGinley are under consideration.