Is the PGA in trouble on The Golf Channel?

mulligan, 09 January 2007, Comments Off on Is the PGA in trouble on The Golf Channel?
Categories: Uncategorized

The 15-year exclusive deal the PGA made with The Golf Channel is looking less exciting this week, after the rocky start the PGA season got off to on The Golf Channel last week. I wonder what Tim Finchem is thinking. Don’t get me wrong, I really want The Golf Channel to succeed and was really excited about the TV deal when first announced, but even I have to admit that the coverage last week deserved a C or C- at best. I don’t like handing out Ds.

So what went wrong? Take your pick. Many commenters have already ripped into the low budget quality, Kelly Tilghman’s and Nick Faldo’s performance, and the lack of supporting crew for Nick Faldo. For me, I think the biggest thing was that The Golf Channel’s coverage became NOTICEABLE. Usually, I think the coverage from ESPN, USA, and TNT was unnoticeable, meaning that the commentators announcing the tournament coverage did their jobs and their commentary and analysis blended well with the golf play, sort of like background music. If the commentators did their jobs well, you probably couldn’t tell the difference among these three cable networks (except for ABC/ESPN’s Andy North, who is a walking wonder). You remembered the golf play, not the commentary.

For The Golf Channel’s coverage last week, however, you definitely remembered the commentary, but in a bad way. The commentary and analysis seemed to hit a few sour notes, and at times there just seemed to be a lot of silent air time, waiting to be filled. Only problem, when it was filled, some of the comments seemed forced, to put it mildly, as if the analysts were scrambling to fill dead air time.

But let’s not rush to judgment. Give The Golf Channel a chance. Last week was only Week No. 1, out of 15 years, so we should give The Golf Channel a chance to get its act together. But if I were The Golf Channel, I would not wait too long before making some changes. Frank Nobilo and Brandel Chamblee, two former PGA players now working at The Golf Channel, have valuable tour experience that might fit well in the booth as the straight men to Nick Faldo, to allow Faldo to do what Faldo does best. (Paul Azinger did work well with Faldo, but Azinger’s got the Ryder Cup to worry about, a monumental task in itself.) Kelly Tilghman should be given her chance, but Rich Lerner might be a try for middle relief. Also, it may be time for The Golf Channel to consider some additional hires. Peter Kostis, Judy Rankin are both free.


You must be logged in to post a comment.

Leave a Reply:

Name *

Mail (hidden) *


Email: thegolfblog [@]

Advertise Here