Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open Headlines Nearly 60 Live Hours of News & Analysis, June 13-19 on Golf Channel

By Golf Channel Public RelationsJune 6, 2016, 6:55 pm

U.S. Open Week Features Include: A Tree Removal Revolution; the History of Oakmont Country Club, Bob Ford’s Final Farewell to Oakmont

Golf Channel Digital to Offer Live Blog for One-Stop Destination for All Things Surrounding 116th U.S. Open

 

Golf Channel has announced its programming plans for the 116th U.S. Open, taking place June 13-19 at Oakmont Country Club outside of Pittsburgh, led by Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open contributing to nearly 60 total hours of live news coverage throughout the week. Hosting the championship for a record-ninth time, Oakmont is often identified as one of the most difficult golf courses in the world.

 

Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open will originate primarily from a dedicated set positioned between Oakmont’s 14th and 15th holes. Golf Channel’s on-site news presence at Oakmont will feature 10 strategic camera locations, which will include robotic cameras staged adjacent to the driving range, short game area and putting green to give viewers an inside the ropes perspective as players in the field prepare for competition. Coverage also will make use of an additional robotic camera stationed between the 3rd and 4th hole fairways, offering unique views of Oakmont’s iconic “church pews” bunker.

 

Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open will begin on Monday, June 13 and continue through Sunday, June 19. Rich Lerner (primetime shows), Kelly Tilghman and Ryan Burr will rotate hosting duties, while Brandel Chamblee, David Duval, Frank Nobilo, Mark Rolfing, Arron Oberholser and Michael Breed will serve as analysts, along with 2014 European-winning Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley. Golf Channel Insiders Tim Rosaforte, Rex Hoggard and Ken Schofield along with award-winning author John Feinstein will offer insight and storylines on players in the field, while Todd Lewis and Steve Burkowski will provide reports from inside the ropes and conduct player interviews.

 

Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open Scheduled Features (previews available upon request):

 

  •  A Tree Removal Revolution: Known for its expansive and undulating greens, Oakmont at one time also showcased an abundance of trees which helped to define one of golf’s most storied venues. Matt Ginella examines the unique story behind Oakmont’s architectural shift, led by a well disguised revolution to remove hundreds of the courses’ trees one-by-one in the middle of the night. The move to return to the course’s original sans-foliage design saw Oakmont remove some 7,000 trees ahead of the 2007 U.S. Open, and another 7,500 in the years      following leading into 2016’s edition.
  •  The History of Oakmont Country Club: Hosting a record ninth U.S. Open this year, Ginella considers why Oakmont makes for such a fitting venue for the year’s second men’s major. From the remorseless test the course presents, to the willing support of the club’s membership, mixed with a long history of signature U.S. Open moments, several experts weigh in on why Oakmont makes for the perfect confluence of ingredients for golf’s most difficult test.
  •  Bob Ford’s Final Farewell to Oakmont: Celebrating his 37th year as head professional at Oakmont, Bob Ford is arguably as synonymous with Oakmont as is Johnny Miller for his historic final round 63 in 1973. Ford will say goodbye to Oakmont at year’s end, stepping down in order to focus full-time on a head pro position at Seminole Golf Club in Florida – a role he’s held during the winter months for the past 16 years. Gary Williams profiles the legacy Ford will leave at Oakmont when he steps away later this year.

 

Morning Drive

 

Morning Drive will kick off each day of U.S. Open week with the latest news and storylines surrounding the competition. The show will feature live reports from Oakmont with Gary Williams, Damon Hack, Chris DiMarco and Matt Ginella, who will be joined by other guests throughout the week. Coverage will showcase original content shot on-site at Oakmont, including segments with Williams and Charlie Rymer from throughout the golf course, and Williams’ sit-down interview with Oakmont head pro Bob Ford to preview what players will encounter ahead of Thursday’s opening round. Morning Drive also will provide viewers with a taste of some of downtown Pittsburgh’s most iconic sights and venues.

 

The Golf Fix

 

Hosted by 2012 PGA Professional Teacher of the Year Michael Breed, The Golf Fix will air on Monday, June 13 at 6 p.m. ET, live from the range at Oakmont. The show will focus on how those in the field can prepare to conquer the toughest test in golf, including tips for fast, undulating putts, and keys to finding the Oakmont fairways and holding its firm greens.

 

PGA TOUR Champions Learning Center

 

On Monday, June 13 at 11:30 p.m. ET, PGA TOUR Champions Learning Center will air a new episode dedicated to the U.S. Open. Larry Nelson, champion of the 1983 U.S. Open –contested at Oakmont – will be featured, offering insight into the course’s most demanding holes.

 

International U.S. Open Programming

 

Golf Channel also will produce live international U.S. Open news programming from its Orlando World Headquarters in both Japanese and Mandarin. The shows will feature live reports and custom content from Oakmont throughout the week. These productions will complement the international distribution of Golf Central’s Live From the U.S. Open, which is distributed to markets within Golf Channel’s worldwide footprint in more than 80 countries, 200 million households and 11 languages.

 

Digital Coverage

 

GolfChannel.com will feature expanded coverage from its team of writers on-site at Oakmont: Rex Hoggard, Ryan Lavner, Randall Mell, Jay Coffin and NBCSports.com’s Joe Posnanski. Content will be driven by a live blog which will serve as the one-stop destination for everything U.S. Open. Coverage also will include up-to-the-minute scoring updates, features, analysis and reaction to emerging storylines and photo galleries.

 

U.S. Open Week Programming Air Times (all times ET):

 

Monday, June 13

 

7-9 a.m.                                   Morning Drive

 

1-4 p.m.                                   Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

7-9 p.m.                                   Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

Tuesday, June 14

 

7-9 a.m.                                   Morning Drive

 

9 a.m.-7 p.m.                           Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

7-9 p.m.                                   Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

Wednesday, June 15

 

7-9 a.m.                                   Morning Drive

 

9 a.m.-5 p.m.                           Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

7-9 p.m.                                   Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

Thursday, June 16

 

6-8 a.m.                                   Morning Drive

 

8-10 a.m.                                 Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

8-10 p.m.                                 Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

Friday, June 17

 

6-8 a.m.                                   Morning Drive

 

8-10 a.m.                                 Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

8-10 p.m.                                 Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

Saturday, June 18

 

6-8 a.m.                                   Morning Drive

 

8-11 a.m.                                 Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

7-9 p.m.                                   Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

Sunday, June 19

 

6-8 a.m.                                   Morning Drive

 

8-11 a.m.                                 Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

7:30-9:30 p.m.                         Golf Central Live From the U.S. Open

 

-NBC Sports Group-

 

Getty Images

Lesson with Woods fetches $210K for Harvey relief

By Will GrayDecember 13, 2017, 2:51 pm

A charity event featuring more than two dozen pro golfers raised more than $1 million for Hurricane Harvey relief, thanks in large part to a hefty price paid for a private lesson with Tiger Woods.

The pro-am fundraiser was organized by Chris Stroud, winner of the Barracuda Championship this summer, and fellow pro and Houston resident Bobby Gates. It was held at Bluejack National in Montgomery, Texas, about an hour outside Houston and the first Woods-designed course to open in the U.S.

The big-ticket item on the auction block was a private, two-person lesson with Woods at Bluejack National that sold for a whopping $210,000.

Other participants included local residents like Stacy Lewis, Patrick Reed and Steve Elkington as well as local celebrities like NBA All-Star Clyde Drexler, Houston Texans quarterback T.J. Yates and Houston Astros owner Jim Crane.

Stroud was vocal in his efforts to help Houston rebuild in the immediate aftermath of the storm that ravaged the city in August, and he told the Houston Chronicle that he plans to continue fundraising efforts even after eclipsing the event's $1 million goal.

"This is the best event I have ever been a part of, and this is just a start," Stroud said. "We have a long way to go for recovery to this city, and we want to keep going with this and raise as much as we can and help as many victims as we can."

Getty Images

LPGA schedule features 34 events, record purse

By Randall MellDecember 13, 2017, 2:02 pm

The LPGA schedule will once again feature 34 events next year with a record $68.75 million in total purses, the tour announced on Wednesday.

While three events are gone from the 2018 schedule, three new events have been added, with two of those on the West Coast and one in mainland China.

The season will again start with the Pure Silk Bahamas Classic on Paradise Island (Jan. 25-28) and end with the CME Group Tour Championship in Naples, Fla., (Nov. 15-18).

The LPGA played for $65 million in total prize money in 2017.

An expanded West Coast swing in the front half of the schedule will now include the HUGEL-JTBC Championship in the Los Angeles area April 19-22. The site will be announced at a later date.

The tour will then make a return to San Francisco’s Lake Merced Golf Club the following week, in a new event sponsored by L&P Cosmetics, a Korean skincare company. Both new West Coast tournaments will be full-field events.

The tour’s third new event will be played in Shanghai Oct. 18-21 as part of the fall Asian swing. The title sponsor and golf course will be announced at a later date.

“Perhaps the most important aspect of our schedule is the consistency — continuing to deliver strong playing opportunities both in North America and around the world, while growing overall purse levels every year,” LPGA commissioner Mike Whan said in a statement. “There is simply no better [women’s] tour opportunity in the world, when it comes to purses, global TV coverage or strength of field. It’s an exciting time in women’s golf, with the best players from every corner of the globe competing against each other in virtually every event.”

While the Evian Championship will again be played in September next year, the tour confirmed its plans to move its fifth major to the summer in 2019, to be part of a European swing, with the Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open and the Ricoh Women’s British Open.

The Manulife LPGA Classic and the Lorena Ochoa Invitational are not returning to the schedule next year. Also, the McKayson New Zealand Women’s Open will not be played next year as it prepares to move to the front of the 2019 schedule, to be paired with the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open.

The U.S. Women’s Open will make its new place earlier in the summer, a permanent move in the tour’s scheduling. It will be played May 31-June 3 at Shoal Creek Golf Club outside Birmingham, Ala. The KPMG Women’s PGA Championship (June 28-July 1) will be played at Kemper Lakes Golf Club on the north side of Chicago and the Ricoh Women’s British Open (Aug. 2-5) will be played at Royal Lytham & St. Annes in England.

For the first time since its inception in 2014, the UL International Crown team event is going overseas, with the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Incheon, South Korea, scheduled to host the event Oct. 4-7. The KEB Hana Bank Championship will be played in South Korean the following week.

Here is the LPGA's schedule for 2018:

Jan. 25-28: Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic; Paradise Island, Bahamas; Purse: $1.4 million

Feb. 15-18: ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open; Adelaide, Australia; Purse: $1.3 million

Feb. 21-24: Honda LPGA Thailand; Chonburi, Thailand; Purse: $1.6 million

March 1-4: HSBC Women's World Championship; Singapore; Purse: $1.5 million

March 15-18: Bank of Hope Founders Cup; Phoenix, Arizona; Purse: $1.5 million

March 22-25: Kia Classic; Carlsbad, California; Purse: $1.8 million

March 29 - April 1: ANA Inspiration; Rancho Mirage, California; Purse: $2.8 million

April 11-14: LOTTE Championship; Kapolei, Oahu, Hawaii; Purse: $2 million

April 19-22: HUGEL-JTBC Championship; Greater Los Angeles, California; Purse: $1.5 million

April 26-29: Name to be Announced; San Francisco, California; Purse: $1.5 million

May 3-6: Volunteers of America LPGA Texas Classic; The Colony, Texas; Purse: $1.3 million

May 17-20: Kingsmill Championship; Williamsburg, Virginia; Purse: $1.3 million

May 24-27: LPGA Volvik Championship; Ann Arbor, Michigan; Purse: $1.3 million

May 31 - June 3: U.S. Women's Open Championship; Shoal Creek, Alabama; Purse: $5 million

June 8-10: ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer; Galloway, New Jersey; Purse: $1.75 million

June 14-17: Meijer LPGA Classic for Simply Give; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Purse: $2 million

June 22-24: Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G; Rogers, Arkansas; Purse: $2 million

June 28 - July 1: KPMG Women's PGA Championship; Kildeer, Illinois; Purse: $3.65 million

July 5-8: Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic; Oneida, Wisconsin; Purse: $2 million

July 12-15: Marathon Classic presented by Owens-Corning and O-I; Sylvania, Ohio; Purse: $1.6 million

July 26-29: Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open; East Lothian, Scotland; Purse: $1.5 million

Aug. 2-5: Ricoh Women's British Open; Lancashire, England; Purse: $3.25 million

Aug. 16-19: Indy Women in Tech Championship presented by Guggenheim; Indianapolis, Indiana; Purse: $2 million

Aug. 23-26: CP Women's Open; Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada; Purse: $2.25 million

Aug. 30 - Sept. 2: Cambia Portland Classic; Portland, Oregon; Purse: $1.3 million

Sept. 13-16: The Evian Championship; Evian-les-Bains, France; Purse: $3.85 million

Sept. 27-30: Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Purse: $1.8 million

Oct. 4-7: UL International Crown; Incheon, Korea; Purse: $1.6 million

Oct. 11-14: LPGA KEB Hana Bank Championship; Incheon, Korea; Purse: $2 million

Oct. 18-21: Name to be Announced; Shanghai, China; Purse: $2.1 million

Oct. 25-28: Swinging Skirts LPGA Taiwan Championship; New Taipei City, Chinese Taipei; Purse: $2.2 million

Nov. 2-4: TOTO Japan Classic; Shiga, Japan; Purse: $1.5 million

Nov. 7-10: Blue Bay LPGA; Hainan Island, China; Purse: $2.1 million

Nov. 15-18: CME Group Tour Championship; Naples, Florida; Purse: $2.5 million

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 4, Jordan Spieth

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 13, 2017, 1:00 pm

Dismissed because he’s supposedly too short off the tee, or not accurate enough with his irons, or just a streaky putter, Jordan Spieth is almost never the answer to the question of which top player, when he’s at his best, would win in a head-to-head match.

And yet here he is, at the age of 24, with 11 career wins and three majors, on a pace that compares favorably with the giants of the game. He might not possess the firepower of Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy, but since he burst onto the PGA Tour in 2013 he has all that matters – a better résumé.

Spieth took the next step in his development this year by becoming the Tour’s best iron player – and its most mentally tough.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


Just a great putter? Oh, puhleeze: He won three times despite putting statistics (42nd) that were his worst since his rookie year. Instead, he led the Tour in strokes gained-approach the green and this summer showed the discipline, golf IQ and bounce-back ability that makes him such a unique talent. 

Even with his putter misbehaving, Spieth closed out the Travelers Championship by holing a bunker shot in the playoff, then, in perhaps an even bigger surprise, perfectly executed the player-caddie celebration, chest-bumping caddie Michael Greller. A few weeks later, sublime iron play carried him into the lead at Royal Birkdale, his first in a major since his epic collapse at the 2016 Masters.

Once again his trusty putter betrayed him, and by the time he arrived on the 13th tee, he was tied with Matt Kuchar. What happened next was the stuff of legend – a lengthy ruling, gutsy up-and-down, stuffed tee shot and go-get-that putt – that lifted Spieth to his third major title.

Though he couldn’t complete the career Grand Slam at the PGA, he’ll likely have, oh, another two decades to join golf’s most exclusive club.

In the barroom debate of best vs. best, you can take the guys with the flair, with the booming tee shots and the sky-high irons. Spieth will just take the trophies.

THE MAJORS

Masters Tournament: Return to the 12th; faltering on Sunday (T-11)

Spieth pars 12, but makes quad on 15

Spieth takes another gut punch, but still standing

Article: Spieth splashes to worst Masters finish

**********

U.S. Open: 1 over usually good ... not at Erin Hills (T-35)

**********

The Open: Unforgettable finish leads to major win No. 3 (1st)

Spieth survives confusing ordeal on 13

Photos: Spieth's incredible journey on 13

Take it, it's yours: Spieth gets claret jug

Chamblee: Spieth doesn't have 'it' - 'he has it all'

Article: Spieth silences his doubters - even himself

**********

PGA Championship: Career Grand Slam bid comes up well short (T-28)

Article: Spieth accepts that Grand Slam is off the table


TWO REGULAR TOUR WINS

AT&T Pebble Beach

Article: Spieth rising from 'valley' after Pebble Beach win

Travelers Championship

Spieith wins dramatic Travelers in playoff

Watch: Spieth holes bunker shot, goes nuts


FUN OUTSIDE OF TOUR LIFE


PHOTO GALLERIES

Photos: Jordan Spieth and Annie Verret

**********

Photos: Jordan Spieth through the years

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 13, 2017, 12:30 pm