RYDER CUP ROUND-UP: GOLF'S BIENNIAL EVENT TEES OFF TOMORROW
The Ryder Cup, the U.S. vs. Europe match play tournament
held every two years, will be carried on USA Network on Friday
(with 10 hours beginning at 8am EDT) and NBC on Saturday and
Sunday. Saturday's NBC coverage will be wrapped around Notre
Dame football, while Sunday will start at 9am and end at 3:30pm,
to be followed by the NFL. NBC Exec Producer Tommy Roy, on the
different pace from regular tour events: "You're not bouncing
around from shot to shot as you would a stroke-play tournament.
You stay with a group or match. You slow it down for the viewer
and set up stories and situations" (GOLFWEEK, 9/16-22 issue).
SPONSORS: Ping is the sole equipment sponsor, with 18 spots
on USA coverage and six a day on NBC. Titleist and Foot-Joy are
also counting on the Ryder Cup for a fourth-quarter boost, as
they are the official ball, glove and shoe sponsors (Jayne Hynes,
GOLFWEEK, 9/16-22 issue).
CYBER CUP: NBC Sports is providing online coverage of the
Ryder Cup from its NBC SuperNet Sports area on The Microsoft
Network and from NBC's Web Site ("NBC HTTV"). In addition to
stats, player bios, course layouts, and continual score updates,
accessers will be able to "Ask the Announcers" questions via e-
mail. The site be rached at http://www.NBC.com or
http://www.GOLF.com (NBC Sports).
OTHER PRE-MATCH NOTES: Collin Montgomerie, who is "emerging
as the leader" of the European team, believes a loss could damage
the European Tour. Montgomerie: "There's been so much build-up
and, if we lose, everything will go flat again" (NEWSDAY,
9/18)....USA Network analyst Peter Kostis: "This is the only
event in golf that you can compare to the Olympics. ... This is
pure golf. The players don't get any money and they're not
allowed to wear any product logos. It's a hugely different
environment" (USA Network)....NEWSWEEK's Mark Starr, on Ryder Cup
mania: "Evidently, there are now enough of us to justify the
kind of coverage that the networks have trouble extending to
political conventions" (NEWSWEEK, 9/25 issue).