WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. - Tom Watson, World Golf Hall of Fame member and the captain of the United States' 2014 Ryder Cup team, named Andy North as his assistant captain for the biannual event Wednesday.
North played on the 1985 Ryder Cup team that lost 16.5-11.5 to Europe. He also won the U.S. Open in 1978 and 1985.
Watson also captained the team in 1993 when the United States won 15-13. The United States has lost seven of the last nine Ryder Cup competitions.
"We'll do whatever we can to get the cup back where it belongs," said North via telephone from his home in Madison, Wisc. "A lot is going to happen in the next 16 months, all you hope in the end is you have a great team of players playing well and have some fun."
The 2014 Ryder Cup matches will be held at Gleneagles Hotel in Perth & Kinross, Scotland.
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NEW ORLEANS Saints Coach Sean Payton said he's anxious to move past the distractions and return to the sidelines after serving a one-season suspension for his role in the franchise's bounty scandal.
Payton is caddy this week for friend Ryan Palmer, who gave his regular caddy the week off and asked Payton to come along.
The Saints had finished 13-3 and won the Super Bowl following the 2009 season, then went 11-5 (2010) and 13-3 (2011) in consecutive regular seasons. On March 2, 2012, the NFL alleged that the Saints implemented a bounty program that rewarded players for deliberately attempting to knock players out of games.
For his alleged role in the scandal, Payton was suspended for the 2012 season, becoming the first head coach in modern NFL history to be suspended for any reason.
"I know our players have looked forward to it," said Payton, whose team finished 7-9 in 2012, missing the playoffs under interim coaches Joe Vitt and Aaron Kromer. "Fortunately for us, we were able to kind of digest and get on with our spring mini-camps and all those things that were open to the media. Prior to last season, we had won 41 games in three years, which led the NFL. It's hard then all of a sudden to have a 7-9 season or a season that you don't make the playoffs."
Palmer tees off at 1:10 p.m. today from the No. 1 tee with Ben Curtis and Greenbrier Pro Emeritus Tom Watson.
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THE ONLY change made to the Old White TPC this year was moving back the No. 18 tee.
Players averaged below par on the par 3 hole the first three years when it was 162 yards. The tee box was moved back 13 yards, making it a 175-yard hole.
"It's going to make a little difference, I think," Bubba Watson said. "I've hit 8-iron, 7-iron there, they're hitting wedges. That contour in the middle of the green really plays with you."
The intermittent rain that has fallen on Greenbrier County this week should make the hole a little easier.