Category: NBC Sports


October 06, 2013

NBC Sports won't show Presidents Cup finale live

Posted at 10:19 AM by Mike Walker

Tiger_300_blogNBC Sports has decided to show the Sunday singles at the Presidents Cup on tape delay instead of showing the matches live, according to a statement from the network.

Because of the rain delays that have plagued this year's event at Murifield Village in Dublin, Ohio, the Sunday singles started at 9 a.m. Eastern time on Sunday morning, instead of noon as originally planned. Here's the statement from NBC:

Resumption of today’s Presidents Cup will begin tomorrow morning on Golf Channel at 7 a.m. ET through the conclusion of the Foursomes matches. Coverage of the Singles matches will begin on GOLF CHANNEL ON NBC at Noon ET. Since the tee times have been moved forward to the morning, contractual obligations and NBC's Sunday morning news and public affairs programming will force coverage to be tape-delayed, barring further weather delays.

While Presidents Cup matches are being played live Sunday morning, NBC sister network The Golf Channel is broadcasting coverage of the Seve Cup from Europe. The NBC Sports Network is broadcasting English Premier League soccer.

Photo: Tiger Woods at the Presidents Cup on Saturday (Getty Images).

September 04, 2013

Johnny Miller: ‘Sad’ to see NBC lose U.S. Open coverage to Fox

Posted at 5:56 PM by Scooby Axson

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The lead analyst for NBC's U.S. Open coverage, Johnny Miller, said Wednesday he wished Fox Sports the best but was sad that NBC Sports won't be airing the tournament after next year. 

Fox Sports and the USGA agreed on a 12-year deal last month that awarded the rights to Fox to televise the tournament until 2026. NBC had aired the final rounds of the Open since 1995.

"The U.S. Open was always my championship. It’s what I was groomed to do, to play," Miller said during a teleconference on Wednesday. "I just always got up for the Open and loved it. You know, I’ll still love it. I just won’t be covering it."

Last month, Miller told the AP that saying that Fox "can't just fall out of a tree and do the U.S. Open."

Wednesday, he said he hopes the network does a good job with their coverage.

"It’s something that’s pretty sad for me," he said. "All of us at ... Golf channel, but especially NBC ... put their heart and soul into it," Miler said. "That was the focal point of everything we did and I just hope that Fox does ... I absolutely wish them absolutely the best. It’s such a great championship."

Miller also had a few thoughts on how he would rank the major tournaments and the FedExCup Championship in terms of importance. Miller won the U.S. Open in 1973 and the British Open in 1976, but never won the PGA or the Masters.

"As a player if I had a choice between the British Open/Open, or the U.S. Open or the Masters, it's about a dead time now to me. You know, the PGA is obviously a really good tournament, too...They are all about the three best flavors of Baskin Robbins; pretty hard to argue which one is better."

(Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

August 29, 2013

Hicks: Miller not riding into the sunset just yet

Posted at 11:31 AM by Cameron Morfit

Millerhicks_stanbadzgettyJohnny Miller won't be hanging up his microphone just because NBC's storied relationship with the USGA will come to an end after next year. That's the way Miller's broadcast partner Dan Hicks sees it, anyway.

In a wide-ranging interview with Ed Sherman, Hicks says the newly inked USGA-FOX partnership was a shocker that saddened both Hicks and Miller, as their days of calling the U.S. Open for NBC will end (at least for the foreseeable future) with the 2014 Open at Pinehurst No. 2. Still, Hicks added, Miller probably won't walk away from the booth just because the Peacock network failed to hang onto the rights to our national championship.

"I don’t know. I don’t think so. I think Johnny is too good to just walk away because we’re not doing the Open anymore. He still wants to do some golf. Our team is tight. If the crew was breaking up, then I could see him leaving.

"We still [televise] a lot of good golf at NBC; the Florida swing; the Players; the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup. I think Johnny will want to be part of that."

For now, Hicks says, he'll concentrate on being the new voice of Notre Dame football. And he'll keep plenty busy with a full slate of golf tournaments in 2014. After that, though, he'll have some more time on his hands. Although he said the USGA was right to open up the bidding, the FOX news was "a kick to the stomach."

"The U.S. Open gets in your blood. It becomes a part of who you are. I’m still coming to terms  with knowing that next year will be our last U.S. Open. I probably won’t absorb it until 2015 when we’re on the outside looking in. It’s going to be tough.

"I feel worse for (Miller) than anyone. He gives so much emotion to that championship. After I talked to (producer Tommy Roy), I called Johnny. You could hear the emotion in his voice."

(Photo: Stan Badz / Getty Images)
August 11, 2013

Greg Norman says Fox offered him U.S. Open analyst gig

Posted at 10:42 AM by Mike Walker

Greg_300Sorry, Discovery Channel, but "Shark Week" might soon refer to the U.S. Open.

According to Tim Rosaforte of Golf World/Golf Digest, Greg Norman says Fox Sports has offered him the lead analyst position when Fox takes over the U.S. Open broadcast in 2015 as part of a 12-year deal worth a reported $100 million a year. Johnny Miller, the acerbic voice of NBC Sports' U.S. Open coverage, has said he is unlikely to move to Fox for the broadcast. Here's Norman:

"David Hill has reached out to me, we have spoken and yes, they have offered me the job," Norman confirmed in an email sent from his home in Florida. "I am flattered to have been asked and I look forward to having discussions with my good friend (Hill) in the very near future."

Hill, senior vice president for News Corp., ran Fox Sports Media Group before moving over recently to manage "American Idol" and the "X Factor" for the network.

Photo: Greg Norman at Wimbledon in July (Getty Images).

February 26, 2013

PGA Tour TV ratings plunge without Tiger, Mickelson

Posted at 12:33 PM by Mike Walker

Tiger_torreyWe suppose you could file this one under "Duh," but, according to SportsMediaWatch.com, TV ratings for the last three PGA Tour events -- Pebble Beach, the Northern Trust Open and the Accenture Match Play Championship -- have dropped significantly from early in the season.

After a good start to the season, the last six professional golf telecasts on broadcast TV have had double-digit declines in overnight ratings. Sunday telecasts in particular have declined by 43 percent (Pebble Beach), 37 percent (Northern Trust) and 24 percent (Accenture) over the past three weeks.

Of course, before Pebble Beach, weekend golf ratings were off the chart as viewers tuned in to watch Phil Mickelson's win at the Phoenix Open (up 65 percent) and Tiger Woods's win at the Farmers Insurance Open (up 85 percent). The downward trend continued at the Accenture Match Play Championship last weekend after Woods and Rory McIlroy lost in the first round. (Mickelson didn't play the event.) 

Coverage of the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship earned a 1.9 overnight rating on NBC Sunday afternoon, down 24 percent from last year (2.5), but up a tick from 2011 (1.8).

Last year, McIlroy made it to the finals against Hunter Mahan. This year, Matt Kuchar beat Mahan in the finals. According to SportMediaWatch, the Kuchar-Mahan match got the third-lowest Sunday rating ever for the tournament. The only two lower-rated Sundays were in 2011 (Luke Donald vs. Martin Kaymer) and 2010 (Ian Poulter vs. Paul Casey).

Photo: Tiger Woods at the 2013 Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines (Robert Beck/Sports Illustrated).

January 29, 2013

NBC and Golf Channel to air Phoenix Open simultaneously

Posted at 4:39 PM by Mike Walker

JohnnymillerThe Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale is so much fun that NBC Sports and Golf Channel are going to broadcast it twice.

The two networks are partners, both owned by corporate daddy Comcast, the cable giant. Golf Channel usually covers the early weekend golf before switching over to NBC Sports for the 3-6 p.m. Eastern time finish.

This weekend, however, Golf Channel will stay on the air from 3-5 p.m. Eastern to cover the action on TPC Scottsdale’s 15th, 16th and 17th holes while the regular NBC telecast with Johnny Miller [right] is on the air. The par-3 16th is one of the most famous par 3s in golf due to the wild and raucous crowds who cheer -- or boo -- every shot. Here's part of the press release:

While NBC is on the air live from 3-6 p.m. ET this weekend with traditional coverage, Golf Channel also will be on the air live with its Spotlight coverage, but focusing only on the challenging stretch that encompasses the 15th, 16th and 17th holes. The 15th hole is a par 5 that can be reached in two, making eagle chances well within the realm of possibility. The 16th hole is the famous par 3 – known as “The Coliseum” – which is completely surrounded by as many as 20,000 rowdy spectators and creating a raucous atmosphere akin to a football game. And, the par 4 17th hole can be reached from the tee, but several greenside hazards pose interesting choices for gambling pros. Golf Channel’s Spotlight coverage will conclude at 5 p.m. ET each day, when viewers will be directed to the final hour of NBC’s third- and final-round coverage.

Here’s a helpful schedule if you’ve got an itchy clicker-finger. And the Super Bowl starts at 6:30 p.m. Eastern.

Thursday 4-7 p.m. ET (Golf Channel live traditional coverage)

Friday 4-7 p.m. ET (Golf Channel live traditional coverage)

Saturday 1-3 p.m. ET (Golf Channel live lead-in coverage)
Saturday 3-6 p.m. ET (NBC live traditional coverage)
Saturday 3-5 p.m. ET (Golf Channel live Spotlight coverage)

Sunday 1-3 p.m. ET (Golf Channel live lead-in coverage)
Sunday 3-6 p.m. ET (NBC live traditional coverage)
Sunday 3-5 p.m. ET (Golf Channel live Spotlight coverage)

[Photo: Getty Images]

January 23, 2013

How to watch PGA Tour events on your laptop or smartphone

Posted at 3:21 PM by Mike Walker

Live network coverage of the PGA Tour is coming soon to a laptop or smartphone near you.

The PGA Tour announced Tuesday that it would offer a live stream of the CBS Sports' telecast of the Farmers Insurance Open this weekend and continue to simulcast PGA Tour events online for the rest of the season. Visitors to PGATOUR.com and CBSSports.com will be directed to a co-branded video player to watch live streaming of CBS Sports’ third-round telecast on Saturday (3-6 p.m. ET) and fourth-round telecast on Sunday (3-6:30 p.m. ET). The live streaming this weekend also will be available on PGA TOUR platforms as well as CBS Sports and CBS SportCaster applications for the iPhone, Android and iPad. CBS also will have a mobile web-based player available at m.cbssports.com.

Golf Channel and NBC Sports coverage will also be available online at next week's Waste Management Phoenix Open, although only people whose cable companies carry the Golf Channel will be able to watch the Golf Channel's coverage online. NBC Sports' broadcasts -- like the CBS Sports broadcasts -- will be available to all Internet subscribers in the United States. The online streaming will not be accessible overseas.

All Golf Channel, through TV Everywhere availability, and NBC telecasts also will be streamed throughout the 2013 season, with Golf Channel available to multichannel video subscribers, and NBC’s weekend coverage of 12 FedExCup tournaments fully available beginning with next week’s Waste Management Phoenix Open. Golf Channel is televising the early rounds for all 30 FedExCup tournaments on NBC and CBS, as well as all four rounds for six tournaments.

CBS Sports also covers the Masters, which does its own streaming on the Masters.com website and the tournament's associated apps.

“This is a significant milestone in the PGA Tour’s digital history,” PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem said in a written statement. “We are excited to work with CBS Sports to bring live PGA Tour action online, and look forward to continuing our efforts with CBS, NBC and Golf Channel to develop ways golf fans can access live coverage of the PGA Tour from wherever they are.”

October 12, 2012

Truth & Rumors: NBC's weekend audience up 45% in 2012

Posted at 10:53 AM by Mark Dee

Memo to PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem: Send Rory a fruit basket. And one for Tiger, too.

The commish should be thanking his lucky -- and compelling -- stars for this year's TV ratings, which were way, way up over last year across all channels that broadcast the Tour, according to Austin Karp of Sports Business Journal.

Just how big a jump are we talking? Check out the chart that accompanied Karp's article below:

Screen shot 2012-10-12 at 8.39.45 AM

For NBC, the 3.42 million viewer average for weekend rounds marks the highest since their current contract began back in 2007. That contract gives NBC weekend coverage of some of the Tour's biggest tournaments, including the Memorial, the Players and, of course, the FedEx Cup playoffs.

Those were made for more compelling television this year than last, when Tiger Woods missed three months of the season, and the Woods/McIlroy rivalry/lovefest wasn't relevant atop the tour.

All that aside, somewhere you just know Johnny Miller is saying, "You're welcome."

October 02, 2012

Truth & Rumors: NBC's aired 2.2 shots per commercial during Ryder Cup

Posted at 11:14 AM by Mark Dee

If we learned one thing about golf fans from our 30-odd hours of live blogging the Ryder Cup, it's that commercials make them mad. Aggressively, vociferously, and quite expressively angry.

Tough to blame them. Apparently, NBC's coverage irked some members of the media, too. Specifically, Bradley Klein of Golfweek, who went so far as to catalogue the limited rotation. Upset with the "stop-start coverage," and the "six or seven" breaks an hour, Klein counted commercials and golf shots.

His informal tabulation: 362 golf shots played to 164 commercials aired. Yeah: 2.21 shots per commercial. Got to keep the lights on somehow.

Klein, though, doesn't stop there. Because, you know, if you have a variety of commercials to keep the mind guessing, it's OK, right? Here's his roundup of the most played:

NBC Network Programming: 31
Omega Watches: 16
Get Golf Ready/Tee It Forward/Play Golf America: 13
Cadillac: 10
Mercedes: 10
National Car Rental: 10
Samsung Galaxy: 9

On the plus side, only one Five Hour Energy Commercial. Prescient: They wouldn't want their product associated with Jim Furyk's 4.5-hour Sunday round.

Related: PGA Tour Confidential: Was it a Europe in, or U.S. collapse?

Related: Sports Illustrated's best shots from Medinah

October 01, 2012

NBC's Ryder Cup ratings highest since '99

Posted at 12:38 PM by Mark Dee

At least someone in the New World is happy with yesterday's Ryder Cup results.

NBC, which broadcast the event stateside, reported on Twitter Monday morning that singles ratings saw a 71% jump over America's 2010 defeat. Sunday's ratings are the Ryder Cup's highest in the U.S. since 1999, when the (formerly) historic rally at Brookline brought the Cup westward.

Here's what their PR department has to say:

So, NBC must be thrilled, even if fans aren't thrilled with their purgatorial commercial loop. Go ahead, try to find a fan after yesterday who is not immediately repulsed by Notre Dame-Miami's "classic" rivalry, the dubiously-titled "Chicago Fire," or the idea of "renting from National." Go ahead, Business Pro, I challenge you.

RELATED: Europe stuns U.S. with final-day comeback

PGA Tour Confidential: Did Europe win it, or U.S. lose it?

Photos: Best shots from Sunday at Medinah





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