MONDAY  | AUGUST 5, 2019
by John Hawkins

As the PGA Tour prepared for negotiations on its next television contract in the fall of 2005, it devised a concept to offset a changing landscape and gain some all-important leverage in its talks with the networks. Although Tiger Woods had driven purse sizes through the stratosphere and continued to add premium value to pro golf’s marquee tournaments, the Tour didn’t have TV rights to any of the majors and was showing signs of suffering from the rich-get-richer syndrome.

Ratings basically were flat across the board. Numerous standard Tour stops were struggling to hold title sponsors. Woods and most of his primary competitors were playing in fewer than half of the 45 or so events each season. What’s more, Woods and Phil Mickelson had publicly lobbied to tighten the schedule by a considerable amount.

 


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Slow play on pro tours? Aw, it’s no big deal
I, for one, am not concerned about slow play at the professional level. No one comes into my office and hammers me about how I copy-and-paste columns in Excel with a mouse versus using shortcuts.

The issue at the pro level is that TV shows only four guys hit shots all day. Sometimes, when Tiger Woods is playing, it is only three guys. The pace of play shows up because TV does not create rapid-fire golf shots for the viewer. Viewers get turned off, or take a nap, perception of the game suffers, etc.

 


1

Number of PGA Tour victories for American J.T. Poston, who shot 8-under 62 on Sunday to win the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, N.C. Poston played four bogey-free rounds at Sedgefield Country Club, shooting 22-under 258 to win in his 77th start. He was the first player since Lee Trevino in 1974 to play a 72-hole stroke-play tournament without a bogey or worse.

 


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RADIO, TV AND PODCASTS

The Grill Room Golf Show
Co-hosts Bob Bubka and Jay Randolph Jr. salute Tom Watson, who retired from major-championship golf after racking up 14 major titles on the PGA and Champions tours. Meanwhile, Bernhard Langer notched his record 11th senior major title; Brooks Koepka claimed his first World Golf Championships victory; and recent college graduate Collin Morikawa won in only his sixth professional start on the PGA Tour.


Hawk & Rude: Koepka is king, but Langer reigns
Co-hosts John Hawkins and Jeff Rude reflect on Brooks Koepka’s latest tournament conquest and marvel at 61-year-old machine Bernhard Langer.




FROM THE INDUSTRY

The Freedom Golf Association will host a clinic for disabled children and wounded veterans on the practice range at Medinah (Ill.) Country Club on Aug. 13 during BMW Championship week. The instructor will be Jonathan Snyder, the FGA’s director of adaptive golf, and Tracy Ramin, the head of competition with the U.S. Adaptive Golf Alliance.

 

Global Value Commerce launched Total Performance with Callaway Week on the company’s GlobalGolf.com site. Customers can register for a chance to win a limited-edition Callaway staff bag plus receive a 50-percent trade-in bonus on used clubs when they purchase new 2019 Callaway equipment.

 


CALENDAR
August 5-11
Women’s amateur: U.S. Women’s Amateur

Old Waverly GC, West Point, Miss.

August 8-11
PGA Tour: Northern Trust

Liberty National GC, Jersey City, N.J.

Korn Ferry: WinCo Foods Portland Open

Pumpkin Ridge GC (Witch Hollow), North Plains, Ore.

LPGA: Ladies Scottish Open

Renaissance Club, North Berwick, Scotland

August 9-11
Symetra: PHC Classic

Brown Deer Run GC, Milwaukee


      
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