Golf Channel Plans More Than 100 Coverage Hours of 2015 Men's and Women's Golf Championships

By Golf Channel Public RelationsApril 22, 2015, 1:55 pm

Men’s and Women’s Championships in Back-to-Back Weeks at Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Fla., May 22-June 3

Marathon LPGA Classic Extends Two Exemptions for 2015 NCAA Women’s Golf Championships

Golf Central to Provide Wraparound News Programming on Location, Including Live Unveil of Year-End Collegiate Golf Awards

Golf Channelto Announce NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships Selections on Monday, April 27 and May 4

Golf Channel will build upon the success of its 2014 coverage of the NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championships and expand its news and tournament coverage to include, for the first time since 1997, live coverage of the NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Championships.

The NCAA Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships will be contested in back-to-back weeks at Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Fla., May 22-June 3. Golf Channel will originate more than 100 hours of news and tournament coverage of both championships onsite, as well as expanded coverage online at and through the network’s social media channels.

“Our partnership with the NCAA brings the great drama of the collegiate game to our viewers through not only our coverage of the NCAA Golf Championships, but also our commitment to cover college golf throughout the year,” said Molly Solomon, executive producer of Golf Channel. “The momentum we garnered in our inaugural year as the NCAA’s television partner for golf has made a positive impact on raising the profile of college golf. And we look forward to introducing to our viewers the future stars of the game and tapping into the passionate fan bases of their respective schools.”

Marathon LPGA Classic to Offer Two Exemptions for 2015 NCAA Women’s Golf Championships

The individual champion from the 2015 NCAA Women’s Golf Championships and a representative from the team national champions will receive exemptions to compete in the 2015 Marathon LPGA Classic, taking place July 13-19 in Toledo, Ohio.

Golf Channel’s Coverage Plan:

Golf Channel will dedicate its full suite of production resources to the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships, featuring more than 25 combined hours of live tournament coverage as well as more than 50 hours of primarily primetime replays.  In addition, Golf Central will feature nearly 25 hours of combined pre-and post-event news coverage produced on location, as well as daily news updates on Morning Drive and online at

Hosted by the University of South Florida, the 2015 NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships will feature teams and student-athletes – who advanced from NCAA Regional Qualifying – competing in an individual stroke-play format over 72 holes Friday-Monday, with the top eight teams qualifying at the conclusion of play for the team match-play tournament Tuesday and Wednesday. Golf Channel’s live tournament coverage of the women’s championships will begin on Monday, May 25 to crown the individual national champion, as well as track the team’s attempting to qualify for the eight-team match-play tournament. And this year, Golf Channel’s coverage will include all three rounds of the team match-play tournament on Tuesday, May 26 and Wednesday, May 27. The same television coverage is planned for the men’s national championships the following week: Monday, June 1 – Wednesday, June 3. All rounds on Golf Channel will include primetime replays.

Golf Channel NCAA Women’s Division I Golf Championships Tournament Coverage

Monday, May 25        Final Round, Individual Stroke Play  4-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Tuesday, May 26        Quarterfinals, Match Play                   10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. ET (Live)

Tuesday, May 26        Semifinals, Match Play                       3:30-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Wednesday, May 27   Finals, Match Play                              3-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Golf Channel NCAA Men’s Division I Golf Championships Tournament Coverage

Monday, June 1                       Final Round, Individual Stroke Play    4-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Tuesday, June 2                       Quarterfinals, Match Play                    10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. ET (Live)

Tuesday, June 2                       Semifinals, Match Play                                    3:30-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Wednesday, June 3      Finals, Match Play                               3-7 p.m. ET (Live)

Golf Channel’s NCAA Men’s And Women’s Golf Championships Broadcast Team:

  • Notah Begay, On-Course Reporter for Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships (Member of the 1994 NCAA Team National Champions, Stanford University)
  • Billy Ray Brown, On-Course Reporter for Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships (1982 NCAA Individual Champion, member of 3-time NCAA Team National Champions, University of Houston)
  • Steve Burkowski, Golf Channel College Insider for Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships
  • Curt Byrum, Tower Announcer for Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships (Participant in 1979 NCAA Men’s Golf Championships, University of New Mexico)
  • Kay Cockerill, Lead Analyst for Women's Golf Championships (Finished Fourth at 1986 NCAA Women’s Golf Championships, 2-time All-American at UCLA)
  • Bob Papa , Play-by-Play Commentator for Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships
  • Phil Parkin, On-Course Reporter for the Men’s Golf Championships (All-American at Texas A&M, participant in 1984 NCAA Men’s Golf Championships)
  • Karen Stupples, On-Course Reporter for Women’s Golf Championships (Second Team All-American at Florida State University)
  • Lanny Wadkins, Lead Analyst for Men’s Golf Championships (3-time NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championships participant – 1969 (10th), 1970 (2nd) and 1971 (6th), Wake Forest      University)

Golf Central News Team Women’s Championship:

  • Steve Burkowski, Golf Channel’s College Insider
  • Lisa Cornwell, Host (University of Arkansas, 3-time All American)
  • Angela Hamann, Reporter (University of Texas)
  • Paige Mackenzie, Analyst (University of Washington, 3-time All-American)

Golf Central News Team – Men’s Championship:

  • Steve Burkowski, Golf Channel’s College Insider
  • Ryan Burr, Host
  • Angela Hamann, Reporter (University of Texas)
  • Gary Koch, Analyst (University of Florida, 1973 NCAA Golf Championships Runner-up and member of 1973      National Championship team)
  • Charlie Rymer, Analyst (Georgia Tech, 4-time NCAA Men’s Golf Championships participant)

Golf Central Announcing Haskins Award presented by Stifel Winner on Monday, June 1

For the first time, the Haskins Award winner will accept his award live on Golf Channel on Monday, June 1, on Golf Central. Since 1971, the Haskins Award presented by Stifel has honored the nation’s outstanding male collegiate golfer as selected by his peers, coaches and the media. The 2015 Haskins Award winner also will receive an exemption to play in The Greenbrier Classic on the PGA TOUR (June 29-July 5).

Road to the NCAA National Championships News Coverage on Golf Channel

  • Monday, April 27: NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Regional Championship Selections Announcement airing live on Golf Central at      7 p.m. ET
  • Monday, May 4: NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Selections Announcement airing live on Golf Channel at 10 a.m. ET, airing within Morning      Drive.
  • Thursday-Saturday, May 7-9: Golf Central and Morning Drive will feature scores, highlights and interviews from the four      NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Regional Championships.
  • Thursday-Saturday, May 14-16: Golf Central and Morning Drive will provide scores, highlights and interviews from      the six NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Regional Championships. Digital Coverage is providing comprehensive coverage leading up to and during the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Golf Championships as part of College Central ( College Central, led by Jay Coffin, Ryan Lavner and Steve Burkowski, will be the source for all things NCAA golf, including tournament results, features and columns, video highlights and breaking news.

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DJ: Kapalua win means nothing for Abu Dhabi

By Associated PressJanuary 17, 2018, 2:55 pm

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – Dustin Johnson's recent victory in Hawaii doesn't mean much when it comes to this week's tournament.

The top-ranked American will play at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship for the second straight year. But this time he is coming off a victory at the Sentry Tournament of Champions, which he won by eight shots.

''That was two weeks ago. So it really doesn't matter what I did there,'' said Johnson, who finished runner-up to Tommy Fleetwood in Abu Dhabi last year. ''This is a completely new week and everybody starts at even par and so I've got to start over again.''

In 2017, the long-hitting Johnson put himself in contention despite only making one eagle and no birdies on the four par-5s over the first three rounds.

''The par 5s here, they are not real easy because they are fairly long, but dependent on the wind, I can reach them if I hit good tee balls,'' the 2016 U.S. Open champion said. ''Obviously, I'd like to play them a little better this year.''

The tournament will see the return of Paul Casey as a full member of the European Tour after being away for three years.

''It's really cool to be back. What do they say, absence makes the heart grow fonder? Quite cheesy, but no, really, really cool,'' said the 40-year-old Englishman, who is now ranked 14th in the world. ''When I was back at the Open Championship at Birkdale, just the reception there, playing in front of a home crowd, I knew this is something I just miss.''

The Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship starts Thursday and also features former No. 1 Rory McIlroy, who is making a comeback after more than three months off.

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Kuchar joins European Tour as affiliate member

By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 2:52 pm

Months after he nearly captured the claret jug, Matt Kuchar has made plans to play a bit more golf in Europe in 2018.

Kuchar is in the field this week at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, and he told reporters in advance of the opening round that he has opted to join the European Tour as an affiliate member:

As an affiliate member, Kuchar will not have a required minimum number of starts to make. It's the same membership status claimed last year by Kevin Na and Jon Rahm, the latter of whom then became a full member and won two European Tour events in 2017.

Kuchar made six European Tour starts last year, including his runner-up performance at The Open. He finished T-4 at the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open in his lone European Tour start that wasn't co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour.

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Hot Seat: Rory jumps into the fire early

By Randall MellJanuary 17, 2018, 2:11 pm

The world’s top tours head to desert regions this week, perfect locales for The Hot Seat, the gauge upon which we measure the level of heat the game’s top personalities are facing ...

Sahara sizzle: Rory McIlroy

McIlroy won’t have to look far to see how his form measures up to world No. 1 Dustin Johnson at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

McIlroy will make his 2018 debut with Johnson in his face, literally.

McIlroy will be grouped with Johnson and Tommy Fleetwood in the first two rounds.

Players like to downplay pairings early in a tournament, but it’s hard to believe McIlroy and Johnson won’t be trying to send each other messages in this European Tour event in the United Arab Emirates. That’s the alpha-dog nature of world-class players looking to protect their turf, or in the case of McIlroy, take back his turf.

“When you are at the elite level, you are always trying to send a message,” Trevor Immelman said about pairings during Tiger Woods’ return at the Hero World Challenge last month.

And that was an offseason event.

“They want to show this guy, ‘This is what I got,’” Immelman said.

As early season matchups go, Abu Dhabi is a heavyweight pairing that ought to be fun.

So there will be no easing into the new year for McIlroy after taking off the last three months to regroup from the stubborn rib injury that plagued him last season. He is coming off a winless year, and he will be doing so alongside a guy who just won the first PGA Tour event of 2018 in an eight-shot rout. Johnson’s victory in Hawaii two weeks ago was his fifth since McIlroy last won.

“Mentally, I wasn’t in a great place, and that was because of where I was physically,” McIlroy said of 2017. “I feel prepared now. I feel ready, and I feel ready to challenge. I feel really good about where I’m at with my health. I’ve put all that behind me, which has been great.”

Sonoran Smolder: Phil Mickelson

Mickelson will turn 48 this summer.

His world ranking is sliding, down to No. 43 now, which is the lowest he has ranked in 24 years.

It’s been more than four years since he last won, making him 0 for his last 92 starts.

There’s motivation in all of that for Mickelson. He makes his 2018 debut at the CareerBuilder Challenge in the Palm Springs area this week talking like a man on a renewed mission.

There’s a Ryder Cup team to make this season, which would be his 12th straight, and there’s a career Grand Slam to claim, with the U.S. Open returning to Shinnecock Hills, where Mickelson finished second in ’04.

While Mickelson may not feel old, there are so many young stars standing in his way that it’s hard not to be constantly reminded that time isn’t on his side in these events anymore.

There has only been one player in the history of the game to win a major championship who was older than Mickelson is right now. Julius Boros won the PGA Championship when he was 48 back in 1968.

Campaign fever: Jordan Spieth

Spieth’s respect in the game’s ranks extends outside the ropes.

He was just selected to run for the PGA Tour Player Advisory Council’s chairman position. He is facing Billy Hurley III in an election to see who will succeed Davis Love III on the Tour’s Policy Board next year.

Spieth, just 24, has already made Time Magazine’s list of the “100 Most Influential People.” He made that back in 2016, with the magazine writing that “he exemplifies everything that’s great about sports.” Sounds like a campaign slogan.

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CareerBuilder Challenge: Tee times, TV schedule, stats

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 17, 2018, 1:10 pm

The PGA Tour shifts from Hawaii to Southern California for the second full-field event of the year. Here are the key stats and information for the CareerBuilder Challenge. Click here for full-field tee times.

How to watch (all rounds on Golf Channel):

Thursday, Rd. 1: 3-7PM ET; live stream:

Friday, Rd. 2: 3-7PM ET; live stream:

Saturday, Rd. 3: 3-7PM ET; live stream:

Sunday, Rd. 4: 3-7PM ET; live stream:

Purse: $5.9 million ($1,062,000 to winner)

Courses: PGA West, Stadium Course, La Quinta, Calif. (72-7,113); PGA West, Nicklaus Tournament Course, La Quinta, Calif. (72-7,159); La Quinta Country Club, La Quinta, Calif. (72-7,060) NOTE: All three courses will be used for the first three rounds but only the Stadium Course will be used for the final round.

Defending champion: Hudson Swafford (-20) - defeated Adam Hadwin by one stroke to earn his first PGA Tour win.

Notables in the field

Phil Mickelson

* This is his first start of 2018. It's the fourth consecutive year he has made this event the first one on his yearly calendar.

* For the second year in a row he will serve as the tournament's official ambassador.

* He has won this event twice - in 2002 and 2004.

* This will be his 97th worldwide start since his most recent win, The Open in 2013.

Jon Rahm

* Ranked No. 3 in the world, he finished runner-up in the Sentry Tournament of Champions.

* In 37 worldwide starts as a pro, he has 14 top-5 finishes.

* Last year he finished T-34 in this event.

Adam Hadwin

* Last year in the third round, he shot 59 at La Quinta Country Club. It was the ninth - and still most recent - sub-60 round on Tour.

* In his only start of 2018, the Canadian finished 32nd in the Sentry Tournament of Champions.

Brian Harman

* Only player on the PGA Tour with five top-10 finishes this season.

* Ranks fifth in greens in regulation this season.

* Finished third in the Sentry Tournament of Champions and T-4 in the Sony Open in Hawaii.

Brandt Snedeker

* Making only his third worldwide start since last June at the Travelers Championship. He has been recovering from a chest injury.

* This is his first start since he withdrew from the Indonesian Masters in December because of heat exhaustion.

* Hasn't played in this event since missing the cut in 2015.

Patrick Reed

* Earned his first career victory in this event in 2014, shooting three consecutive rounds of 63.

* This is his first start of 2018.

* Last season finished seventh in strokes gained: putting, the best ranking of his career.

(Stats provided by the Golf Channel editorial research unit.)