USA enjoying having Tiger, even without a golf club

Tiger Woods was not known as a sociable golfer when he was in his playing prime, but almost every member of the United States' Ryder Cup squad has shared a positive story about the 14-time major champion as a vice-captain.

Wednesday marked the second day of practice rounds at Hazeltine National Golf Club, and Woods was once again an accessible presence on the course for players to talk to for advice.

Woods followed the group consisting of Jordan Spieth, Patrick Reed, Dustin Johnson and Matt Kuchar for the second straight day, but players outside of that pod have enjoyed his presence as well.

Phil Mickelson spoke about Woods' influence in the locker room, and his desire to help the team play their best golf.

"The last few weeks, we've been talking on the phone multiple times a day," Mickelson said.

"It's been really exciting for us because we've been on so many teams for so many years, and to have this much input and involvement in the process, the way Davis [Love III, captain] has implemented everybody's input, the way he's brought everybody together and their ideas, has been truly an inclusive process and it's been fun for Tiger and I to be a part of something like that."

Kuchar, one of Love's four captain's picks, has worked closely with Woods so far this week, both on the course and on the range.

Kuchar is especially impressed with Woods, an icon of the game, doing whatever he can to help the participating players.

"I've become good friends with Tiger, played on some teams with him as my partner," Kuchar said.

"Played a number of practice rounds and enjoyed the time where I get to pick his brain. So I felt like I've done that a bit. I've tried to see what sort of help, advice, knowledge, he could pass on, and he's always been very helpful. Always been very giving.

"And so to have him behind me without a club is different, but still, I feel like, here is a guy who is willing to help out if I have any sort of questions on technique with anything; it could be from chipping to full swings. I feel like we're still part of the same team. He's still there and willing to share any sort of helpful insights he may be able to share, but just not with a club in his hand."

There has been talk the USA vice-captains are willing to do anything for their groups, even run and get them a turkey sandwich, which is something Jimmy Walker poked fun at Wednesday during his news conference.

"I hope guys are asking him to run and go get stuff for them, even if they don't want it. I think that's just great," Walker said to a round of laughter.

"I think he's enjoying it, I really do. He looks like he's having a great time.

"He's been having a great time at night. I think he's happy to be here and happy to be a part of it. I know he's had a lot of say in what's going on and a lot of input. I think that's great that he's here and he wants to be here."

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