This blog chronicles St. John’s golf alumnus
Keegan Bradley ‘08CPS live from Chicago’s famed Medinah Country
Club as he represents the United States in the 2012 Ryder Cup,
September 28-30. St. John’s will give you a birds-eye look at the
behind the scenes activities leading up to, and through the
completionof the tournament.
Final Day of Ryder Cup - September 30
St. John's alumnus Keegan Bradley
came to the 39th Ryder Cup as a rookie with a world of talent but
questions remained, "could he deliver when the pressure was
And, as crushing a defeat as it was for the U.S. (squandering a
10-6 lead only to lose to the Europeans 14 1/2 to 13 1/2), that
question was answered as millions of people saw the real
Keegan Bradley come of age as a "bonafide star in the annals of
American golf" this week at Medinah (IL) Country Club just
outside of Chicago.
His 3-1-0 record was the most points (3) by an individual
American, along with Jason Dufner, Dustin and Zach Johnson, and
Phil Mickelson. He gave world number #1 Rory McIlroy all he
could handle before losing 2 and 1 on Sunday. Bradley became the
first U.S. rookie to win in his first three team matches since
Loren Roberts in 1995.
Plus, his pairing with idol Phil Mickelson proved masterful by
captain Davis Love III, as the dynamic duo played 44 holes and only
trailed for three holes the entire weekend.
He hit long putts for birdies to electrify the crowd, bombed
drives off the tee that disappeared out of site and measured a
staggering 320+ yards on average. Rookies at the Ryder Cup normally
don't turn in these types of performances.
Even off the course his enthusiasm
made him a fan favorite. Prior to the final round, Bradley
inexplicably ran up the player walkway to the first tee and got the
crowd in a frenzy before Sunday's 12-match format got underway. He
felt it was his duty to take the initiative, and that more than
anything personifies a new dawning in American golf and Keegan
Bradley has made a claim for being the "emotional leader of a new
crop of U.S. talent."
Ryder Cup week will highlight Bradley's exploits at the 39th
competition of this Super Bowl of Golf, but on this day the
Europeans would not be denied defending the Cup title of two
years ago. Even a late wake up call for McIlroy, who almost missed
his tee time, couldn't derail the Europeans from winning.
The Americans were gracious in defeat as Bradley tweeted, "real
tough (to take) but great playing to the Europeans." Davis Love III
may have said it best when he noted to close the post U.S. press
conference, "America can be proud of this team."
Bradley is an ambassador for St. John's University and you can
add American Golf to that moniker, but he's even a better person, a
gentleman and a fierce competitor at the age of 26, who
respects the game of golf and its traditions - as well as being
gracious in defeat.
Day Five from the Ryder Cup - September 29
Keegan Bradley has had plenty of support from the raucous
U.S. crowd at the 39th Ryder Cup and today the decibel level
reached a fever pitch as Phil Mickelson and the star rookie
won their thrid straight match by a whopping 7up score . The
dynamic duo are now 3-0 in the competition and have etched their
names into the record books by accomplishing the
* Bradley/Mickelson's win matches the all-time victory margin
for an 18-hole team match. They now share the record with Hale
Irwin/Tom Kite (U.S.), who defeated Ken Brown/Des Smyth in the
Friday Afternoon Foursomes in 1979; and Paul Azinger and Mark
O’Meara (U.S.), who defeated Nick Faldo and David Gilford in the
Saturday Morning Foursomes in 1991.
* Bradley becomes the first U.S. rookie to win in his first
three team matches since Loren Roberts in 1995.
* This is the first time that Mickelson has won three team
matches in a Ryder Cup.
* Of the 44 holes they played together, Bradley/Mickelson
trailed for only three holes.
reviews keep coming in for Bradley who has made his name both here
in America and all over the world at this Ryder Cup for his guile,
poise and passion for the game of golf.
"I told Davis (Love III) when I spoke to him before the
tournament that Keegan is going to be your killer. He's one tough
hombre," said former U.S. Ryder Cup captain Lee Trevino.
The U.S. now hold a 10-6 lead going into the final day of
competition tomorrow. The Americans need 14 1/2 points to take the
Ryder Cup from the defending champion Europeans on Sunday.
Some sites and sounds from the day included Keegan's Mom (Kay)
jumping high in the air as her son ripped a hybrid 275 yard shot on
the 10th hole onto the green, and Keegan sitting out the afternoon
session as a spectator, seen pumping up the crowd at the first hole
for his teammates. And, former President George W. Bush
shaking hands with Tiger Woods and other U.S. players at the
clubhouse putting green as the second session began in the
There's still one day of golf competition left as Keegan Bradley
and the Americans are 4 1/2 points away from something special. The
drama begins in earnest tomorrow (Sunday) at Noon EST.
Day Four from the Ryder Cup - September 28
Keegan Bradley couldn't have scripted it any better. Two
Ryder Cup wins in his first day of competition with idol and mentor
Phil Mickelson. It's the kind of storyline you dream about. He
drove the ball long and true with yardages of 350+ that had the
crowd shaking their heads, hit putts of enormous magnitude from
25-feet or more, and engaged the crowd all afternoon with his chest
and fist bumps, as well as high fives with U.S. fans ready to
explode with joy.
"When the pressure is at its highest, that's when Keegan Bradley
is at his best," his partner Phil Mickelson tweeted right after
their morning win.
The pair took down Sergio Garcia and Luke Donald in the early
hours of Friday's alternate shot format then held on to beat Rory
McElroy and Graeme McDowell in fourball play for a 2-0 start and
two huge points for a US team that ended the day up 5-3.
Fred Couples got the crowd going just after 7 a.m. CST with arms
raised inciting the crowd to thunderous chants of USA, USA. By the
end of the day it was chants of KEEGAN BRADLEY, KEEGAN
His coach Davis Love III had one word for him, "Awesome." Even
ESPN announcers joined in the praise saying, "No one loves the
Ryder Cup more than Keegan Bradley."
The rookie tag may be a Ryder Cup moniker but Bradley played
like a seasoned veteran on this day. One hole characterized his
incredible round today and it was during his second 18 holes
of play. On the 412 yard, par 4 third hole, Bradley drove the
greenside bucker, blasted out of the trap to within five feet and
confidently made the birdie putt. WOW. It's a day Keegan Bradley
will never forget!
For Bradley this night is a time to enjoy, reflect and bottle
that great play and excitement for Day Two, which starts again
tomorrow (Sept. 29) morning as the sun comes up. Pairings for
Saturday's 36-hole format will be announced this evening.
Day Three from the Ryder Cup - September 27
Let the Games begin!! Pairing for opening round matchups
tomorrow were announced and U.S. rookie Keegan Bradley and Phil
Mickelson get the start in Match #2 vs. Europe's Sergio Garcia
and Luke Donald at the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah (IL) Country Club
at 8:35 a.m. EST. The format is alternate shot to begin the
morning session which also includes the following
* Jim Furyk and Brant Snedeker (US)
vs.Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell (Europe)
8:20 a.m. EST, Match #1
* Jason Dufner and Zach Johnson (US)
vs. Lee Westwood and Francesco Molinari
8:50 a.m. EST, Match #3
* Steve Stricker and Tiger Woods (US)
vs. Ian Poulter and Justin Rose (Europe)
9:05 a.m. EST, Match #4
Thursday's Opening Ceremonies highlighted the day where
tradition and respect for the game of golf was the overriding
theme. The European squad lauded former Ryder Cup captain Seve
Ballesteros, who passed away in 2011, as this year's captain Jose'
Maria Olazabal fought back tears for his good friend and mentor.
U.S.captain Davis Love III, talked about this not being a battle
like the senseless wars taking place across the world, but more of
an athletic competition among friends.
"In today's society we need to rely on friends from all parts of
the world," said Love III.
That labor of love could also be seen as Bradley and Mickelson
ended their final practice round when a boy slipped through the
ropes and the two pros gladly signed his flag and took a picture
with the young boy. Then, as the crowd chanted U.S.A., both players
signed autographs as a huge throng gathered behind the 18th green.
Sergio Garcia of Europe did the same as he walked down the
18th fareway and was greated by another young admirer - put his arm
around him and signed his cap.
Justin Timberlake, U.S. Ryder Cup Ambassador, and former
American Idol vocalist Jordan Sparks added star power to the
afternoon which concluded on a high note with both team's national
Day Two from The Ryder Cup - September 26
The 26 year old U.S. rookie strolled out for Day Two of his
Ryder Cup experience, golf's premier event against Europe, with his
Red (pants), White (cap) and Blue (shirt) tucked neatly into
his slacks. Keegan Bradley, St. John's University alum, is awed by
the magnitude of this global event but doesn't look out of place
nor is he intimidated. A few butterflies maybe, but up for the
was asked in his first Ryder Cup media session about being on a big
stage and having to make a winning putt or shot to win the Ryder
Cup for the U.S. "If it does come down to me I'd love it,"
Bradley said without flinching. "I can't speak from experience
because I've never played a Ryder Cup, and it took me by surprise a
little bit at how intense and into it every player is, so if I have
to win my match on the final day I'd relish the challenge."
Paired on Wednesday with Phil Mickelson, Zach Johnson and Jason
Duffner, the foursome worked on different format elements during
their practice round to prepare for the weekend competition (Sept.
28-30) ahead. A crowd of more than 25,000 flocked to Medinah (IL)
Country Club just outside of Chicago to take in the festivities
today, as players continued to engage the fans, sign autographs and
soak up the atmosphere. A gala Ryder Cup dinner with performances
by Justin Timberlake and the group Chicago headline Wednesday
Thursday it's all business with the announcement of team
pairings and strategies put in place for the U.S. to try to wrestle
the Cup away from the defending champion European squad and
Bradley knows he can lean on the veterans of this U.S. team for
"It's comforting as a rookie to know I can go talk to a Jim
Furyk, Phil or Tiger (Woods) or any of these guys and they are
there for you and want to help," added Bradley during the
Next up is the last practice round tomorrow and the formal
Opening Ceremonies from 5-6 p.m. EST, complete with sport coats,
shirts and ties before an outdoor (weather permitting) crowd
on the 10th hole of Course #1 at Medinah.
Day One from the Ryder Cup - September 25
John's Keegan Bradley summed it up best with his first quote of the
night at the opening media session for the 39th Ryder Cup. "Today
was the most fun maybe I've ever had on a golf course," said
Bradley, who was paired in Tuesday's practice round with U.S.
teammates Phil Mickelson, Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson at
Medinah (IL) Country Club. "It was honestly one of the highlights
of my career and I kind of expect that to happen every day this
The foursome soaked in the cheers of the pro U.S. crowd, joked
with the gallery and Bradley relished the moment by tossing Ryder
Cup pins to fans throughout the day.
A Captain/Celebrity Scramble also highlighted the
afternoon as Chicago sports legends Ernie Banks (Cubs), Scottie
Pippen (Bulls), Richard Dent and Robbie Gould (Bears), Stan
Mikita (Blackhawks), teamed (2004)against Olympian Michael Phelps,
comedians George Lopez and Bill Murray as well as entertainer
Justin Timberlake. They all played with former U.S. captains Corey
Pavin (2010), Tom Lehman (2006), Hal Sutton (2004), Ben Crenshaw
(1999), Tom Kite (1997), Lanny Watkins (1995), Dave Stockton (1991)
and Lee Trevino (1985).
Bradley, 14th in the World rankings, is the youngest U.S. player
in the Ryder Cup at 26 years old. His youth was ever present as he
high-fived, and fist-bumped Mickelson after his partner birdied the
12th hole, and flashed his big smile to the boisterous U.S. fans
throughout the afternoon.
"It was like a Sunday crowd at a Major today, and this was a
Tuesday practice round. We still have four days until we play - but
it was pretty special to be a part of."
On Wednesday both teams will practice format play consisting
of four ball, singles, and foursome play.
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