SBD/Issue 132/Sports Media

Will Trial Run Of Miking Caddies Prove As Entertaining As Hoped?

NBC, PGA Tour Will Team Next Week For
Trial Run Of Miking Caddies
NBC and the PGA Tour will team next week during the Shell Houston Open for a test run of putting microphones on caddies, but NBC golf producer Tommy Roy said he is "not sure this is going to be any great breakthrough," according to Michael Hiestand of USA TODAY. Roy: "As soon as a player steps away, you won't hear his side of the conversation." Hiestand notes while miking caddies "might allow TV to get new sounds, such as conversations on greens that are now beyond reach," Roy does not appear to be "too psyched about taking on a role ... of having to worry if miked-up caddies trust the network to carefully edit audio before it airs on tape delay." Roy: "I prefer to do it live as we do now. That's us trusting them" (USA TODAY, 3/27). ESPN's Tony Kornheiser said of the plan, "I think they are fascinating conversations ... but I don't think this is going to happen. Not because caddies won't do it -- the players won't do it. The players employ the caddies and the players stand close to the caddies." Kornheiser: "The players are going to curse. They're not going to want that out. They say things to their caddies about guys they don't like who are playing in another foursome or in their twosome, and I don't think it's going to fly." ESPN's Michael Wilbon said if PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem "wants this, and it appears he does and the players want to keep bringing in these big purses, ... they'll go on-board" ("PTI," ESPN, 3/26).

SAY WHAT? In N.Y., Phil Mushnick writes Golf Channel is the "national home of golf expressions that golfers never use." Fans at "just about any time" can tune in to "hear golf spoken as it's never spoken unless it's spoken on TV." Mushnick: "Recently heard was that a first-year pro is in his 'initial professional campaign' and that a shot 'found the putting surface'" (N.Y. POST, 3/27).

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