American fundamentals are anything but strong in this weekend's Ryder Cup
"The fundamentals are strong."
A wide range of American political pundits have been dissecting that statement this week. And the same kind of debates are going on in 19th holes all over this great nation.
Whether it's the United States' economy or Ryder Cup squad, the "fundamentals" in question seem about as wobbly as a game of Jenga.
For the past few weeks, we've all be trying to psych ourselves into thinking the American team has a fighting chance at Valhalla Golf Club this weekend.
We've suggested practical arguments: "The golf course suits the U.S. playing style."
We've served up outlandish ones, too: "The U.S. is better off without Tiger."
We've considered that the No. 2 man, Phil Mickelson, may be capable of filling the absent World Number One's Nikes.
We've argued the six American Ryder Cup rookies - who probably haven't played "alternate shot" in years, or faced this kind of intense international spotlight - will bring with them a fresh new approach to an ailing team.
We say Kenny Perry will provide key veteran poise - without mentioning he didn't play in a major all year.
We salivate over J.B. Holmes' long ball, while omitting his matchplay collapse to Tiger earlier this year.
We've even tried to point the finger, saying that, by selecting two Englishmen with his captain's picks, Nick Faldo has divided a famously close-knit European team.
It all sounds like a lot of baseless verbosity. Perhaps tomorrow morning when I walk the grounds of Valhalla and see the players myself, I'll drink the Kool-Aid and start to believe.
But right now, I'm not buying a U.S. return to glory. The fundamentals are anything but strong. And the media elite, wanting everyone to believe this contest will be close so they keep on their TV sets, can't convince me otherwise.
I'm talking about the Ryder Cup, of course.
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