QUESTION: Did anybody see this coming?
ANSWER: There had been a lot of chatter out on TOUR early in the year that CBS was looking to replace Wadkins with Faldo. Most of that talk died down when The Golf Channel announced it had reached an agreement with Faldo. For its part, TGC Senior Management knew all along that Faldo was in negotiations to fill out his broadcasting schedule with both NBC and CBS.
QUESTION: Whats the news here?
ANSWER: Two angles: Wadkins declined to remain at CBS in a lesser role. And Faldo will not play in the 2007 Masters, a tournament he has won three times; although CBS bosses did not rule out the possibility that he may wear a green jacket in the tower at 18 in his seat next to Jim Nantz.
QUESTION: How will Faldo do?
ANSWER: Quite nicely. If he didnt become a star at NBC, he will do so at TGC and CBS. One source close to Faldo told me recently that Faldo wants to be more than a golf broadcaster, he wants to be an entertainer. Meanwhile his style has been almost unanimously praised by TV executives, media critics and viewers alike.
QUESTION: How will Faldos presence affect the dynamic inside the CBS golf team?
ANSWER: The personalities of Gary McCord and David Feherty are certifiable. Throw Faldo into the mix and it could be a free-for-all in a good way. At least thats the hope in certain quarters. If this troika gets out of control, it will be left to CBS producer Lance Barrow to rein them back to planet Earth.
QUESTION: Whats the forward spin here?
ANSWER: The print media will almost certainly look to pit the irreverent Johnny Miller of NBC against the self-confident Faldo of TGC and CBS. Bring it on, Faldo said Monday. Meanwhile, get ready for televised golfs latest clash of the titans.
QUESTION: Any more changes in the works at CBS golf?
ANSWER: The bosses say there may be one more. Speculation centers on Ian Baker-Finch. If Finch hops on board, look for him to take Faldos seat next to Nantz in the weeks Faldo is not working--although nobody should be surprised or disappointed if the respected and knowledgeable Peter Oosterhuis gets first crack at the Wadkins former spot when Faldo is elsewhere.
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