A Ryder Cup without fans is worthless to anyone not named Bryson DeChambeau, who might prefer a return to COVID-19 empty galleries given that a fortnight hence “Brooksie” could make history by becoming the first U.S. player to get jeered by his own countrymen.

DeChambeau births hecklers like the Duggars birth humans. Add the Ryder Cup, a maternity ward of meanness unlike anything in golf, and the atmosphere at Whistling Straits beginning Sept. 24 would make Dave Chappelle blush.

That is exactly why the PGA of America postponed the biennial event from 2020 to 2021. Without fans, the Ryder Cup would be a snoozer.

“The players didn’t want the Ryder Cup without fans, because the fans make it,” said Dave Shedloski, a Golf Digest contributor based in Columbus who will be making his 12th appearance at the event. “If the Euros can get under Bryson’s skin, let them.”

That shouldn’t be too hard. DeChambeau increasingly shows signs of being annoyed by overserved fans, which prompted a sympathetic PGA Tour to issue a warning to mouthy spectators: you will be removed for raining ridicule on any player’s 18-hole parade.

But such threats hold no sway at the Ryder Cup, over which the tour has little jurisdiction.

“Not a lot of behavioral police will be out there,” Shedloski said, adding that Golf Digest once ran a campaign called “Be Nice to Monty,” which sought to soften fans’ heckling of Scottish golfer Colin Montgomerie. “The idea was to bring a little more decorum, but that’s not what the Ryder Cup is. It’s a football game, or better yet a rugby match. It’s a verbal scrum city.”

Who knows if DeChambeau blows a fuse when European fans, and undoubtedly some Yanks, pelt him with “Brooksie,” a taunt meant as a non-flattering comparison to DeChambeau antagonist Brooks Koepka?

More clear is that DeChambeau’s teammates won’t get caught up in the fireworks. United States captain Steve Stricker made sure of that on Wednesday when he announced his six at-large picks, four of them Ryder Cup rookies, to go with the six automatic qualifiers.

The six captain’s picks — Jordan Spieth, Tony Finau, Daniel Berger, Harris English, Xander Schauffele and Scottie Scheffler — collectively rank low on drama. Spieth can get animated, and Berger burns hot internally, but no one will confuse this band for Spinal Tap.

I generally like the picks, although I was pulling for Kevin Na to get a spot. Pairing the slow-paced Na and his putting theatrics — the 37-year-old likes to walk-in his putts — with the slow-paced DeChambeau and his sometimes irritating on-course behavior would have driven the Euros batty.

Stricker also bypassed Patrick Reed, a bit of a surprise in that Reed, who is coming off an illness, likes to ramp up the U.S. vs. them emotion. But as Shedloski correctly noted, how has that worked out for the good old U.S. of A? Not well. Europe has won nine of the past 12 Ryder Cups.

Playing things emotionally closer to the vest may be the better way to go. Stricker’s own personality is decidedly low drama, so go with what you know.

“You can wear yourself out with all the emotion of it,” Shedloski said.

No fear of that happening with this U.S. team. The automatic qualifiers joining the at-large flat-liners are Cup rookie Collin Morikawa (average pulse), Dustin Johnson (no pulse), DeChambeau (rapid pulse), Brooks Koepka (slight pulse), Justin Thomas (slightly rapid pulse) and rookie Patrick Cantlay (no pulse).

The talent among those six is unquestionable, but there are concerns. Morikawa has been nursing a sore back and Koepka may not even be available after injuring his wrist at last week’s Tour Championship. Further, of the top six only Cantlay and DeChambeau have been in exceptional form.

“The strongest guys haven’t looked that good,” Shedloski agreed.

That said, the sum may be greater than the parts as long as one of the parts acts like his normal self. Spieth is the key to the U.S. team, serving a passionate leader who can bridge between the top six and at-large picks. It also does not hurt that he is 7-2-2 in Ryder Cup team play (although 0-3 in singles matches) and 8-5-1 in Presidents Cup team play for a cumulative 15-7-3 record in team competition.

“I like Jordan. He’s a good leader. Quiet, but good,” Shedloski said.

I like Finau, and not just because as a long hitter his game sets up well at what is a bomber’s course. Someone needs to keep DeChambeau balanced when the heckling happens, and Finau is so nice he won’t roll his eyes when DeChambeau uses him as a shoulder to cry on.

As for who plays locker room traffic cop in the DeChambeau-Koepka feud, well, that’s why Phil Mickelson is a vice captain. Lefty is just loosey enough to lighten the mood.

I’m picking the Yanks to win. Barely.

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