A Masters Day in Studio

By Kraig KannApril 6, 2007, 4:00 pm
Six hours of coverage on Day 1 of the 71st Masters Tournament. And my guess is that it doesnt quite feel like enough.
The anticipation for Rd. 1 was so big. and not just for those of you at home. When Mike Ritz and David Marr began updates Thursday morning at 9 a.m., the Noon Live From the Masters gang was prepping in our newsroom, and just when that show kicked in, there was another meeting to get ready for the 7 p.m. edition of Live From the Masters.
Its hardly a small cast. Producer Matt Hegarty and director Rick Monte handle the early 'Live From'.. and Lead Producer Eric Saperstein and Director Eric Rutledge handle the prime-time 'Live From' broadcast.
The on-air folks included Inga Hammond, Vince Cellini, Frank Nobilo, Brandel Chamblee, Brian Hewitt and myself. Two hours before air-time we are huddled in our newsroom discussing Hegartys rundown of ideas.
That hardly includes the meetings on-site at Augusta where Rich Lerner, Kelly Tilghman, Steve Sands and Scott McCarron, among others, were preparing for their part in the show.
Our start time was four hours prior to network coverage which is actually dictated by your interest at home. Fact is, you all have watched each and every year with such enthusiasm for this major that we continue to add hours and manpower and shows.
So how does it work? And who helps guys like Vince Cellini and myself and the ladies like Inga and Kelly sound knowledgeable?
Long before you see us at noon, there is a collection of some 40 people getting ready behind the scenes. Our lead producer Eric is not only overseeing the days entire coverage and assigning folks to various projects, but hes also working on a variety of statistics and video highlights to best assess the days play at Augusta National.
Saperstein is the boss, but he has help coordinating tapes from various folks who watch and keep a running log of every shot shown on television that day. There is a person (Bret Brilliante) whos sole job is to provide a reel of shots for countless players we might talk about. So when Brandel Chamblee discusses Brett Wetterich, Bret Brilliante has him covered.
There is a highlights producer (Chris Datres) whose job is to put together the best two minutes of highlights from the day, and then add a few shorter versions we might use later in the coverage. Another person (Mike Mc Eown) edits what we call re-teases which lets you know whats coming up in the next few segments.
Alex Byrd is responsible for putting together interview segments from the leaders that come in from Augusta National. Reed Burton is one of our new additions at GOLF CHANNEL. Hes our research man who supplies on-air folks like myself with statistics and brings that information to our folks who put the graphics together that you see on the air.
The tease is what you see at the beginning of the show. One man's job which takes hours to produce. Chris DeCelle is responsible this week. Did you see Arnold Palmers ceremonial tee shot on Thursday? Amy Rogers edited that together. And if you saw Rich Lerners Championship Journal it was Richs writing but Ben Elishas effort to match the pictures to the words that brings it home on television.
Those are just some of the names in the newsroom on this day and of course there are so many more whove been working for months on features that will only see a few minutes of time this week
And the folks in the studio - behind the camera ' are putting in long hours prepping cameras and lighting among other things long before the show kicks off at noon.
Ken Garren is the leader of the most personable team Ive worked with in my television career. No less than 12 people handle cameras, lighting and audio. No chance of doing it without guys like Howard Schain, Jeff Kozak, James Murphey and Jonathon Renuart who handle technical production and camera operation. Derreck Beauregard was in charge of audio, and had help from Steve Specht, Jim McCabe and Rick Alexander.
The noon edition or early edition of 'Live From...' is a blend of informative chaos. Truth is that while we all do our homework and bring countless articles and handwritten notes and media guides to the set, once the first tee ball is struck, we react to whos doing well and whos not.
Scorecards and updates are constant, and there is always a producer and or director talking in my ear about whats coming next. If Inga and Vince and I do our jobs well, you dont notice. Its actually our technical directors Gary Ruchlin, Richard Rothhaus and Alex Tallon who push the buttons as directors Monte and Rutledge bark out the signals.
So it's four hours from Noon to 4 p.m. before network coverage. Then a 30 minute or so breather to grab a bite to eat (while watching the coverage) before another meeting among our producers, hosts and analysts to assess the days play and get ready for our prime-time 'Live From.' Before you know it were on the air again.
Features on Arnold Palmer as the ceremonial starter came your way. Jeev Milka Singh was in the spotlight in prime-time. Of course theres plenty good banter about the favorites like Woods and Mickelson, Els and Singh. And certainly there is a collection of interviews with the leaders and reaction to all of the days biggest stories.
But our goal - and we talk about this all the time ' is to bring you a feel inside the ropes, and to keep you informed about all the players who seemingly have a chance or at least a good story to tell.
And if weather is the story.. weve got that too, as Stephanie Abrams joins us from the Weather Channel.
Its a daily thrill ride that comes four times a year (six if you include the Presidents Cup or Ryder Cup and Solheim Cup).
I arrived just after 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, and finished our nights 'Live From' coverage at about 10 p.m. In between, meetings and a nose to the computer reading wire stories and various newspapers to get ready for showtimes, I was a guest on three radio shows around the country discussing round one.
Its just after 11 p.m. on Thursday night, the make-up is off and the bag is packed. Its time to head home, catch some sleep and wake-up ready to do it all again.
Round 2 comes quickly. And truth is, the anticipation of the next day and what may or may not happen is what gets me excited.
As you can see, Im hardly alone. We do it together and I hope youre enjoying the coverage!
Email your thoughts to Kraig Kann
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    Kelly beats Monty with two-shot swing on final hole

    By Associated PressJanuary 21, 2018, 3:21 am

    KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii – Jerry Kelly made an 18-foot birdie putt on the final hole, Colin Montgomerie missed a 6-footer for par and Kelly turned a one-shot deficit into a victory Saturday in the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

    After Kelly drove it well right into lava rocks on the par-4 16th, leading to bogey and giving Montgomerie the lead, Montgomerie made a mistake with his tee shot on the last, finding a fairway bunker. Montgomerie's approach went over the green and after Kelly converted his birdie, the 54-year-old Scot jammed his par putt well past the hole.

    Full-field scores from the Mitsubishi Electric Championship

    It was the third win on the over-50 tour for the 51-year-old Kelly, who finished tied for 14th last week at the PGA Tour's Sony Open in Honolulu. That gave him confidence as he hopped over to the Big Island for his tournament debut at Hualalai. The limited-field event includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

    Kelly closed with a 6-under 66 for a three-day total of 18-under 198. Montgomerie shot 69. David Toms shot 67 and finished two shots back, and Miguel Angel Jimenez was another stroke behind after a 66.

    Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, closed with a 70 to finish at 10 under.

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    Rahm manages frustration, two back at CareerBuilder

    By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 1:21 am

    Jon Rahm managed the winds and his frustrations Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge to give himself a chance to win his fourth worldwide title in the last year.

    Rahm’s 2-under-par 70 on the PGA West Stadium Course left him two shots off the lead going into the final round.

    “I wasn’t really dealing with the wind that much,” Rahm said of his frustrations. “I was dealing with not being as fluid as I was the last two days.”

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    The world’s No. 3 ranked player opened with a 62 at La Quinta Country Club on Thursday and followed it up with a 67 on Friday at PGA West. He made six birdies and four bogeys on the Stadium Course on Saturday.

    “The first day, everything was outstanding,” Rahm said. “Yesterday, my driver was a little shaky but my irons shots were perfect. Today, my driver was shaky and my irons shots were shaky. On a course like this, it’s punishing, but luckily on the holes where I found the fairway I was able to make birdies.”

    Rahm is projected to move to No. 2 in the world rankings with a finish of sixth or better on Sunday.

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    Cook leads by one entering final round at CareerBuilder

    By Associated PressJanuary 21, 2018, 12:51 am

    LA QUINTA, Calif. – Austin Cook hit a hybrid into the fairway bunker on the par-4 18th on a breezy Saturday afternoon at La Quinta Country Club, then chunked a wedge and raced a chip 20 feet past the hole.

    Kip Henley, the longtime PGA Tour caddie who guided Cook to a breakthrough victory at Sea Island in November, stepped in to give the 26-year-old former Arkansas star a quick pep talk.

    ''Kip said, 'Let's finish this like we did on the first day at the Nicklaus Course.' We made a big par putt on 18 there and he said, 'Let's just do the same thing. Let's get this line right and if you get the line right it's going in.'''

    It did, giving Cook an 8-under 64 and a one-stroke lead in the CareerBuilder Challenge going into the final round on the Stadium Course at PGA West. Fellow former Razorback Andrew Landry and Martin Piller were tied for second, and Jon Rahm and Scott Piercy were a another stroke back after a tricky day in wind that didn't get close to the predicted gusts of 40 mph.

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    ''I know that I wouldn't have wanted to play the Stadium today,'' Cook said. ''I think we got a great draw with the courses that we got to play on the days that we got to play them.''

    Cook played the final six holes on the front nine in 6 under with an eagle and four birdies.

    ''Starting on my fourth hole, I was able to make a birdie and kind of get the ball rolling and it never really stopped rolling,'' Cook said. ''Kip and I were doing really good at seeing the line on the greens.''

    After a bogey on 10, he birdied 11, 12 and 15 and parred the final three to get to 19-under 197.

    ''I think that tonight the nerves, the butterflies, all that will kind of be a little less,'' Cook said. ''I've been in the situation before and I was able to finish the job on Sunday. I think it would be a little different if I didn't play like I did on Sunday at Sea Island.''

    He's making his first start in the event.

    ''I came in from Hawaii on Monday, so I only had two days to prepare for three courses,'' Cook said.

    Landry, the second-round leader, had a 70 at the Stadium. Piller, the husband of LPGA tour player Gerina Piller, shot a 67 at La Quinta. Winless on the PGA Tour, they will join Cook in the final threesome.

    ''Piller's a good guy and we have played a lot together and same with Cookie,'' said Landry, the only player without a bogey after 54 holes. ''Hope the Hogs are going to come out on top.''

    Rahm had a 70 at the Stadium to reach 17 under. The third-ranked Rahm beat up the par 5s again, but had four bogeys – three on par 3s. He has played the 12 par 5s in 13 under with an eagle and 11 birdies.

    ''A little bit of a survival day,'' Rahm said.

    The wind was more of a factor on the more exposed and tighter Stadium Course.

    ''The course is firming up,'' Rahm said. ''I know if we have similar wind to today, if we shoot something under par, you'll be way up there contesting it over the last few holes.''

    Piercy had a 66 at the Stadium.

    ''I controlled my ball really well today,'' he said.

    Adam Hadwin had a 67 at La Quinta a year after shooting a third-round 59 on the course. The Canadian was 16 under along with Grayson Murray and Brandon Harkins. Murray had a 67 on the Nicklaus Course, and Harkins shot 68 at the Stadium.

    Phil Mickelson missed the cut in his first tournament of the year for the second time in his career, shooting a 74 on the Stadium to finish at 4 under – four strokes from a Sunday tee time. The 47-year-old Hall of Famer was playing for the first time since late October. He also missed the cut in the Phoenix Open in his 2009 opener.

    Charlie Reiter, the Palm Desert High School senior playing on the first sponsor exemption the event has given to an amateur, also missed the cut. He had three early straight double bogeys in a 77 on the Stadium that left him 1 over.

    John Daly had an 80 at La Quinta. He opened with a triple bogey and had six bogeys – four in a row to start his second nine - and only one birdie. The 51-year-old Daly opened with a 69 on the Nicklaus layout and had a 71 on Friday at the Stadium.

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    Phil misses CareerBuilder cut for first time in 24 years

    By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 12:48 am

    Phil Mickelson missed the cut Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge. It’s a rare occurrence in his Hall of Fame career.

    He has played the event 15 times, going back to when it was known as the Bob Hope Classic. He has won it twice.

    How rare is his missing the cut there?

    The last time he did so, there was no such thing as a DVD, Wi-Fi, iPods, Xbox, DVR capability or YouTube.

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    The PGA Tour’s Jon Rahm didn’t exist, either.

    The last time Mickelson missed a cut in this event was 1994, nine months before Rahm was born.

    Mickelson struggled to a 2-over-par 74 in the heavy winds Saturday on the PGA West Stadium Course, missing the 54-hole cut by four shots. He hit just four of 14 fairways, just nine of 18 greens. He took a double bogey at the 15th after requiring two shots to escape the steep-walled bunker on the left side of the green.

    Mickelson won’t have to wait long to try to get back in the hunt. He’s scheduled to play the Farmers Insurance Open next week at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, Calif.