PRO FOOTBALL TALK's Mike Florio wrote the Redskins' decision to hire Jay Gruden -- the younger brother of ESPN's Jon Gruden -- to be the team’s coach "raises an interesting question" regarding Jon Gruden’s role with "MNF." Florio: "When the Redskins land on Monday Night Football, will Jon be welcome at the practices and production meetings involving the team Jay Gruden’s team will be playing?" ESPN "plans to make no adjustments when the Redskins are playing." The net said in a statement, "If we have the Redskins, he will call the games. We will be transparent about their relationship. Jon is a professional and will call the games objectively" (PROFOOTBALLTALK.com, 1/9).
SLOW PLAY: GOLF WORLD's Geoff Shackelford writes for "all of the incredible innovations ushered in with high-definition broadcasts, televised golf's glacial rate" of adopting ShotLink's shot-tracking technology is "holding back a spike in the kind of wonk-fueled fan interest" enjoyed by the NFL and MLB. For some reason, "ambivalence still reigns among TV folk when it comes to ShotLink." The "integration of more informative graphics" is "long overdue." Networks "don't take advantage of the larger widescreen display that HD broadcasting allows [for graphics], generally out of belief that courses are the most beautiful venues in sport and viewers do not want to be deprived of such scenery" (GOLF WORLD, 1/13 issue).
SPHERES OF INFLUENCE: UFC Exec VP & Asia Managing Dir Mark Fischer said that the outfit is "considering launching a Southeast Asia version of its reality television show, as well as a series pitting fighters from South Korea and Japan against each other." Fischer said that "The Ultimate Fighter" is now in its first season in China and "attracts as many as 16 million viewers" (WSJ.com, 1/10).