NBC Sports Tournament Airtimes & Notes (March 23-27)

By Golf Channel Public RelationsMarch 21, 2016, 10:05 pm

Field of 64 Set for WGC-Dell Match Play in Austin,

Wednesday-Sunday on Golf Channel and NBC


LPGA Tour Stages Final Test before First Major of the Year with

Kia Classic in California, as Ko, Park and Thompson Headline the Field


Donald, Finau, Daly Headline Puerto Rico Open


The PGA TOUR shifts to Texas for the World Golf Championships Dell Match Play, with an elite field of 64 players competing in a round robin format (Wednesday-Friday) before narrowing to the single elimination round of 16 on Saturday with the conclusion scheduled for Sunday. The field includes 64 of the top 66 players in the world, including Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Rory McIlroy, Bubba Watson, Rickie Fowler and Adam Scott. On the LPGA Tour, players will tee it up this week at the Kia Classic in southern California for a final tune-up before next week’s ANA Inspiration, the first major championship of 2016. Lydia Ko, Inbee Park, Lexi Thompson and Stacy Lewis all are in the field, with coverage airing in primetime on Golf Channel. And the PGA TOUR also stages the Puerto Rico Open this week, with Luke Donald, Tony Finau and John Daly headlining the field.




WGC-Dell Match Play

Dates: March 23-27

Venue: Austin Country Club, Austin, Texas


Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern):

Wednesday     2-8 p.m. (Live) / 9 p.m.-3 a.m. (Replay)

Thursday         2-8 p.m. (Live) / 10:30 p.m.-4:30 a.m. (Replay)

Friday              2-8 p.m. (Live) / 10:30 p.m.-4:30 a.m. (Replay)

Saturday          10 a.m.-2 p.m. (Live) / 1-5 a.m. (Sunday replay)

Sunday            10 a.m.-2 p.m. (Live) / 1-5 a.m. (Monday replay)


Tournament Airtimes on NBC (Eastern):

Saturday          2-6 p.m. (Live)

Sunday            3-7 p.m. (Live)


Broadcast Notes:

Golf Central player news conference, Tuesday, Noon-2 p.m. ET: On Tuesday at Noon ET, Golf Central will present a special two hour player news conference from Austin Country Club, featuring Jason Day, Adam Scott and Jordan Spieth.

Event format: The 64-man field will be assigned through the live bracket draw and divided into 16 four-player groups, competing in three round robin matches Wednesday-Friday. On Friday, the player in each group with the most points (1 point for a win, ½ point for a halved match) advances to single elimination match play with the Round of 16 and quarterfinals scheduled for Saturday and the semifinals and finals scheduled for Sunday. Each player in the field is guaranteed to play at least three matches. The top-16 seeded players are assigned to Group A, while their respective opponents in their assigned four-man group will be determined through a blind draw during the bracket special on Monday night. The remaining 48 players outside of Group A have been divided into three separate groups (via Official World Golf Ranking): seeds 17-32 in Group B, seeds 33-48 in Group C, and seeds 49-64 in Group D.

McIlroy defends: Rory McIlroy defeated Gary Woodland 3&2 in the finals at TPC Harding Park last year for his 10th career PGA TOUR win.

Headlining the field: Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Rory McIlroy, Bubba Watson, Rickie Fowler, Adam Scott, Justin Rose, Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed, Danny Willett and Branden Grace.


WGC-Dell Match Play Bracket Special Broadcast Team

Host:Ryan Burr

Analysts:Brandel Chamblee / Tim Rosaforte

Reporters:Todd Lewis / Cara Robinson


Golf Channel / NBC Broadcast Team:

Play by Play: Terry Gannon (Golf Channel) / Dan Hicks (NBC)

Analyst: Nick Faldo (Golf Channel) / Johnny Miller (NBC)

Tower: Gary Koch / Peter Jacobsen

On-Course: Roger Maltbie / Notah Begay / David Feherty

Interviews: Todd Lewis (Golf Channel) / Steve Sands (NBC)

Essays: Jimmy Roberts



Kia Classic

Dates: March 24-27                                                                    

Venue: Park Hyatt Aviara Golf Club, Carlsbad, Calif.


Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern):

Thursday         8-10 p.m. (Tape delay) / 7-9 p.m. (Streaming on Golf Live Extra)

Friday              8-10 p.m. (Tape delay) / 7-9 p.m. (Streaming on Golf Live Extra)

Saturday          6-9 p.m. (Live)

Sunday            6-9 p.m. (Live)


Broadcast Notes:

Final event before first major of 2016: This week is the final opportunity for players to conduct their final preparations ahead of next week’s first major of 2016, the ANA Inspiration.

Kerr defends: Cristie Kerr finished two strokes ahead or Mirim Lee for her 17th LPGA Tour victory.

Headlining the field: Lydia Ko, Inbee Park, Lexi Thompson, Stacy Lewis, Sei Young Kim, Ha Na Jang, Brooke Henderson, Shanshan Feng, Hyo Joo Kim, Suzann Pettersen and Cristie Kerr.


Golf Channel Broadcast Team:

Play by Play: Whit Watson

Analyst: Judy Rankin

Tower: Tom Abbott                            

On-Course: Jerry Foltz / Karen Stupples




Puerto Rico Open

Dates: March 24-27                                                                    

Venue: Coco Beach Golf & Country Club (Championship Course), Rio Grande, Puerto Rico


Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern):

Thursday         10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. (Live)

Friday              10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. (Live)

Saturday          9 p.m.-Midnight (Tape delay) / 2-5 p.m. (Streaming on Golf Live Extra)

Sunday            9 p.m.-Midnight (Tape delay) / 2-5 p.m. (Streaming on Golf Live Extra)


Broadcast Notes:

Cejka defends: Alex Cejka held off Sam Saunders, Emiliano Grillo, Jon Curran and Tim Petrovic with a birdie on the first playoff hole for his first career PGA TOUR win.

Headlining the field: Luke Donald, Tony Finau, Retief Goosen, John Daly, Patrick Rodgers, Peter Malnati, George Coetzee, Trevor Immelman, David Toms and Sam Saunders.


Golf Channel Broadcast Team:

Play by Play: Bob Papa

Analyst: Curt Byrum

Tower: Phil Blackmar                         

On-Course: Matt Gogel / John Cook

-NBC Sports Group-

Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.

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Awards season: Handing out the 2017 Rexys

By Rex HoggardDecember 14, 2017, 7:00 pm

After careful consideration and an exhaustive review of 2017 we present The Rexys, a wildly incomplete and arbitrary line up following one of the most eventful years in golf.

 There will be omissions – just keep your calls, concerns and even e-mails to yourself. We appreciate your patronage, but not your feedback.

It’s Not You, It’s Me Award. You know the deal: You can’t be a part of two until you’re a better one; but on this front it’s really just a desire to find a better two.

It was a tough year for caddies, and not just any caddies. In June, Phil Mickelson split with longtime bagman Jim “Bones” Mackay. Both player and caddie cited the need for “change,” but the move reverberated throughout the game.

“The fairytale is over,” mused one caddie when told of the high-profile split.

In the wake of the Lefty/Bones break, Rory McIlroy split with his caddie J.P Fitzgerald, and Jason Day replaced looper/swing coach Colin Swatton on his bag. It all proves yet again that there are only two kinds of caddies, those who have been fired and those who are about to be fired.

Run for the Rose Cup. Sergio Garcia got the green jacket, a lifetime exemption to the game’s most coveted member-member and a long-awaited major, but Justin Rose took home the slightly less prestigious “Rose Cup.”

Following a frenzied afternoon at Augusta National in April, Rose lost to Garcia on the first playoff hole, but he won so much more with his honesty and class.

“You're going to win majors and you're going to lose majors, but you've got to be willing to lose them,” Rose figured following the final round. “You've got to put yourself out there. You've got to hit the top of the leaderboard. There's a lot of pressure out there and if you're not willing to enjoy it, then you're not ready to win these tournaments. I loved it out there.”

Few have made losing look so dignified and fewer still are as easy to root for.

Half-Empty Cup. It was the perfect setting, with sweeping views of the Manhattan skyline and the promise of the Tristate masses descending on this fall’s Presidents Cup.

If only all those rowdy New Yorkers had something to cheer.

For the sixth time in the last seven matches, the U.S. team rolled to a victory of at least three points. This particular edition was even in danger of ending on Saturday afternoon thanks to a particularly dominant performance by a young American squad led by Steve Stricker.

Officials spoke of the purity of the competition and the attention the ’17 cup generated, but however you spin the 19-11 rout, this cup is half empty.

Enigma Award. The actual hardware is simply an oversized question mark and was sent directly to Tiger Woods’ South Florida compound following the most curious of seasons.

While it’s become customary in recent years to consider the uncertain path that awaits the 14-time major winner, this most recent calendar brought an entirely new collection of questions following fusion surgery on his lower back in April, his arrest for DUI on Memorial Day and, finally, a glimmer of hope born from his tie for ninth at the Hero World Challenge earlier this month.

When will he play again? Can he compete against the current generation of world-beaters? Can his body withstand the rigors of a full PGA Tour schedule? Should Jim Furyk make him a captain’s pick now or wait to see if he should be driving a vice captain’s golf cart instead?

Little is certain when it comes to Woods, and the over-sized question mark goes to ... the guy in red and black.

After Further Review Chalice. In April, Lexi Thompson endured a heartbreaking loss at the ANA Inspiration, the byproduct of a surreal ruling that arrived a day late via a viewer e-mail and cost the would-be winner a major championship.

The entire event was so unsavory that the USGA and R&A made not one but two alterations to the rules and created a “working group” to avoid similar snafus in the future.

That working group – it turns out the U.S. Ryder Cup team has some sort of copyright on “task force” – initially issued a decision that introduced a “reasonable judgment” and a “naked eye” standard to video reviews, and last week the rule makers kept the changes coming.

The new protocols on video review will now include an official to monitor tournament broadcasts and ended the practice of allowing fans to call in, or in this case e-mail, possible infractions to officials. The USGA and R&A also eliminated the two-stroke penalty for players who sign incorrect scorecards when the player is unaware of the penalty.

While all this might be a step in the right direction, it does nothing to change Thompson’s fate. The AFR Chalice won’t change the harsh reality, but at least it will serve as a reminder of how she helped altered the rulemaking landscape.

Nothing Runs Like a Deere Award. Nothing gets fans fired up like officials turning fields of fescue rough into hay on the eve of a major championship, and the USGA’s decision to do some 11th-hour trimming at Erin Hills in June certainly caught many by surprise.

Officials said the nip/tuck on four holes was in reaction to a particularly foreboding forecast that never materialized, and the maintenance drew the ire of some players.

“We have 60 yards from left line to right line,” Rory McIlroy said. “You’ve got 156 of the best players in the world here; if we can’t hit it within that avenue, you might as well pack your bags and go home.”

The record low scoring at the U.S. Open – winner Brooks Koepka finished with a 16-under total – didn’t help ease the fervor and had some questioning whether the softer side of the USGA has gone a bit too far?

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Podcast: Daly takes big pride in 'Little John'

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 14, 2017, 5:28 pm

John Daly is a two-time major champion, but the newest trophy in his household belongs to someone else.

That’s because Daly’s son, 14-year-old Little John “LJ” Daly, rallied to capture an IJGT junior golf event over the weekend. The younger Daly birdied the first extra hole to win a five-person playoff at Harbour Town Golf Links, site of the PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage.

Daly recently sat down for a Golf Channel podcast to describe what it’s like to cheer for his son and PNC Father-Son Challenge partner, share the unique challenge presented by the upcoming Diamond Resorts Invitational and reflect on some of the notable highs of a career that has now spanned more than 25 years.

Sneds starts slowly in Masters invite bid

By Will GrayDecember 14, 2017, 4:22 pm

Brandt Snedeker flew halfway around the world in search of a Masters invite, but after one round of the Indonesian Masters it appears he'll likely return home empty-handed.

Snedeker made only two birdies during his opening round in Indonesia, shooting an even-par 72 that left him in a tie for 77th and 10 shots behind leader Justin Rose. This is the final OWGR-rated event of 2017, and as a result it has drawn several notable entrants, including Snedeker, who hope to crack the top 50 in the world rankings by year's end to secure a trip to Augusta National.

Full-field scores from the Indonesian Masters

Snedeker started the year ranked No. 28, but after missing five months because of injury he entered the week ranked No. 51 and is projected to slip even further by the end of the month. As a result, he likely needs a top-3 finish in order to secure a return to the Masters, which he has missed only once since 2007.

World No. 55 Dylan Frittelli also struggled, shooting a 4-over 76 in the opening round, while No. 56 Kiradech Aphibarnrat is tied for 14th at 4 under. Yusaku Miyazato, currently 58th in the world, is tied for ninth and five shots behind Rose.

Should Snedeker and the other hopefuls fail to crack the top 50 by the end of the year, two paths to the Masters remain: win a full-point event on the PGA Tour in early 2018 or be inside the top 50 in the world rankings when the final cutoff is made on March 25.