USA Network To Air Coverage Of Ryder Cup If Necessary
USA Network will air its first golf coverage in more than three years if the Ryder Cup extends to Monday for the first time in history. The NBC Universal-owned cable network plans to start live coverage from Wales at 2:00am ET Monday morning and will continue broadcasting until the conclusion of the event. A more than seven-hour rain delay Friday morning has pushed the opening Fourball format into Saturday, leaving the Ryder Cup more than 18 holes behind schedule after the opening day. While Ryder Cup officials have altered the Saturday schedule, there remains a strong likelihood that at least the singles action, scheduled for Sunday, will extend into Monday. USA Network last covered a golf tournament at The Masters in '07.
The addition of USA Network to the broadcast schedule adds another twist to what quickly became a hectic Friday for ESPN and NBC after the rain delay left both networks scrambling to adjust their respective broadcasting plans. ESPN had been scheduled to air live action from Wales throughout the entire opening day only. With the opening format extending into Saturday, however, ESPN now will provide on-course coverage Saturday from 2:30-8:00am. ESPN will handoff coverage to NBC, which will air live the remaining Saturday competition, a change from its original plan to provide only tape-delay action. NBC then comes back Sunday morning at 4:00am and will air the Ryder Cup until the sun sets in Wales at about 1:45pm.