Tiger Woods, Jim Furyk and Steve Stricker have been named 2016 U.S. Ryder Cup assistant captains.
American captain Davis Love III made the announcement on Wednesday at Sea Island Resort, site of this week's The RSM Classic on the PGA Tour, which Love hosts. Woods, Furyk and Stricker join Minnesota native Tom Lehman as vice captains for next October's event at Hazeltine National in Chaska, Minn.
Love also announced that the U.S. and European sides have agreed to allow each captain to name a total of five assistant captains. Love said another assistant captain would be named later.
These designations do not preclude any of these players from making the team -- either on points or as a captain's pick. In fact, Woods, who has started a long recovery from two back procedures in the last two months, has told Love that it's his intent to make the team.
"This is something I want to do,” Woods said in a statement. “I will continue to do whatever I can to help win the cup back. Once I’m fully healthy, I’d like to try to make the team, too, but either way, I’m very excited to work with Davis, the other vice captains and the players to get a U.S. victory.”
Love said he, Furyk and Stricker also intend to make the team, but not with quite the same expressed intensity as Woods. If any of the named captains or assistant captains make the team, Love will eye someone else to take over an open spot.
"We want to make the team, but we're realistic," Love said. "If we make the team, someone else will have to take our role."
Love was asked if Phil Mickelson was considered for an assistant captain slot, which Love said he was. However, as Love saw and heard first-hand at the Presidents Cup as an assistant captain to Jay Haas, Mickelson has every intention of making the 12-man team.
"He walked off 18 going, I'm ready for the Ryder Cup," Love said. He added Mickelson said, "I'll help you in any way I can. I'm going to focus on making the team."
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