NBC's Golf Broadcasts To Have Golf Channel Look, Feel Beginning This Weekend
NBC will begin using the on-air look and feel of Golf Channel this weekend when it broadcasts the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. The "Golf Channel on NBC" branding will continue throughout the golf season on NBC's 10 PGA Tour events, similar to the way ESPN's brand is used on ABC telecasts. NBC will use Golf Channel's graphics, leaderboard and logos during the Saturday and Sunday telecasts of the tour. A combined logo with the Golf Channel "G" and NBC's peacock will accompany some of the graphics. "This will certainly be a way to grow the Golf Channel audience and extend the brand," said Mike McCarley, the NBC Sports veteran who was named Golf Channel's new president shortly after NBC's merger with Comcast was approved last month. McCarley said Golf Channel will benefit from extensive promotion on the 20 networks and 40 websites across NBC and Comcast. For example, spots during the Saturday broadcast of the PGA Tour on NBC will promote European Tour golf that airs the next morning on Golf Channel. "A lot of NBC Sports has been defined by golf over the years, and to take the Golf Channel brand and put it front and center on NBC is a testament to the brand Golf Channel has become," McCarley said. A one-hour Friday night special on Golf Channel will pair talent from both networks for the first time in "State of the Game Live," a roundtable discussion that will feature two of the game's most popular analysts: NBC's Johnny Miller and Golf Channel's Nick Faldo, along with other talent from both networks. The show is the first of what is expected to be several cross-promotional efforts between the two nets. McCarley said the move is strictly about branding and was not an attempt to achieve cost efficiencies. "Our consumer-facing brand for golf is Golf Channel," he said. "We'll have a complete focus across NBC Universal on this brand." He expects there to be future efforts to integrate CNBC and Golf Channel because their audiences are so similar. CNBC currently runs a business break in Golf Channel's live "Morning Drive" show.