Journeymen PGA Tour Players Making Significant Impact On Golf Channel Airwaves
Many analyst positions at Golf Channel are "being filled by former players ... who don't have the cachet of having Hall of Fame resumes," according to Ed Sherman in a special to GOLF WORLD. Between analysts Brandel Chamblee, Tripp Isenhour, Frank Nobilo, Charlie Rymer, Steve Flesch and Notah Begay III, the combined "number of major-championship victories: zero." Pro golf is the "only sport in which the top stars seem to play forever," and as a result, the "roster of big-name talent for TV is much slimmer; or nonexistent." Chamblee has "emerged as Golf Channel's most important player when it comes to interesting TV." Following a 14-year career that included one PGA Tour win, Chamblee joined Golf Channel in '04 and has since "separated himself by voicing blunt opinions backed by an endless stream of facts." He has a "strong, almost bulldog, mentality when making his point." Having not "reached the competitive pinnacle is a reality for many of the golf analysts who don't speak from experience when critiquing big stars." Flesch admits he "can't talk about feeling the pressure of being the leader on the 72nd hole of a major because 'I've never walked in those shoes.'" Rymer said, "I'm not going to make statements I'm not qualified to make. I'm not going to try to get inside a major champion's head." Sherman notes the odds of "marquee stars stepping into an analyst's seat on a regular basis in the future seems remote" because, besides the "long-term option of the Champions Tour, those players likely won't have the financial incentive to go into TV." Golf Channel will not disclose financial figures, but sources said that salaries "are in six figures for analysts such as Rymer and Isenhour; with outside opportunities to supplement their income with appearances thanks to their TV exposure" (GOLF WORLD, 8/26 issue).