SBD/January 28, 2011/Media
Upcoming PGA Tour TV Negotiations Could Take On Different Tenor
Published January 28, 2011
PLAYING PARTNERS: USA TODAY's Michael McCarthy writes Finchem "is right to arrange more TV-friendly player pairings" during early rounds of tournaments, such as the Woods-Rocco Mediate-Anthony Kim threesome playing the first two rounds of the week's Farmers Insurance Open. Players like Woods and Phil Mickelson "can nearly double TV numbers when they're on the leaderboard," and the Tour is "smart to pair its biggest stars while also giving more air time to young bloods" like Kim and Fowler. McCarthy: "Did I mention the PGA Tour is due to begin negotiations this year for new TV contracts? The Tour wants to be armed with better TV numbers when it sits down to talk money" with CBS and NBC. But USA TODAY's Michael Hiestand writes if golf "couldn't develop consistently higher ratings as Tiger Woods brought in so many new viewers over a decade, it's not going to help itself much with tweaks" (USA TODAY, 1/28).
LORD OF THE LINKS: GOLFWEEK this week has a special feature on golf and television. The magazine’s Martin Kaufmann profiles Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, who has become “perhaps golf’s best broadcast analyst.” Kaufmann: “He has strong opinions, supports them with enough stats to make a Roto-geek’s head spin, states his case with a quick, coherent delivery, would prefer to hit a shank rather than mouth a cliché, and doesn’t much care if someone takes exception to what he says.” Unlike many other “athletes who parachute into television,” Chamblee “doesn’t mind criticizing former competitors.” He begins preparing for tournaments several days beforehand, as he will “research the history of the event, analyze the course, pore over statistical trends, pick 10-15 favorites, then track each shot they hit.” He said, “When the (camera) light goes on, if I have fun, that’s a good show for me. Nobody’s making me do this. I’m doing it because I like it” (GOLFWEEK, 1/28 issue).
THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN: GOLFWEEK held an online poll asking several questions related to golf broadcasts. Readers were asked to name their three favorite on-course or tower reporters, and CBS’ David Feherty was named by 33.3% of the 2,887 respondents. CBS’ Gary McCord (13.5%) and NBC’s Roger Maltbie (10.0%) ranked second and third, respectively. NBC’s Johnny Miller was named the announcer “most likely to make you think, ‘Hmmm, that’s interesting’” by 33.5% of 1,562 respondents, while he also was named the analyst “most likely to make you throw the remote at the TV” by 45.3% on 1,389 ballots (GOLFWEEK, 1/28 issue).