Golf Channel and NBC this week embark on two big weeks of competition and signature news coverage on both networks. In what has become an important major championship primer for players around the globe, the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open kicks things off this week on both Golf Channel and NBC. While back in the States, Jordan Spieth defends his first PGA TOUR win at the John Deere Classic on Golf Channel and Kenny Perry tries for a repeat win at the U.S. Senior Open on NBC. Next week, Golf Channel heads across the pond to Hoylake, England, to report from the 143rd Open Championship with its signature major championship news coverage, Live from Royal Liverpool and Morning Drive, beginning Monday, July 14. And the celebrities come out with the popular American Century Championship from Lake Tahoe, beginning Friday, July 18, on NBCSN and continuing on the weekend on NBC (with replays on Golf Channel).
European Tour: Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open (all times Eastern)
Thursday-Friday, July 10-11 Rounds 1 & 2 5:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Golf Channel
Saturday-Sunday, July 12-13 Round 3 & Final Round 9:30 a.m.-Noon Golf Channel
Noon-2:30 p.m. NBC
Defending Champion Phil Mickelson headlines a registered field that includes multiple major champions, including Darren Clarke, Ernie Els, Sir Nick Faldo, Padraig Harrington, Paul Lawrie, Rory McIlroy, Jose Maria Olazabal, Louis Oosthuizen and Justin Rose. Many players use the Scottish Open as a primer for the Open Championship played the following week. In 2013, Mickelson went on to capture major championship glory at the Open Championship after having won the Scottish Open the previous week. Els also won his two Open Championship titles after having played the previous week. This year’s tournament will be contested at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club in Aberdeen, Scotland.
PGA TOUR: John Deere Classic
Thursday-Friday, July 10-11 Rounds 1 & 2 3-6 p.m. Golf Channel
Saturday-Sunday, July 12-13 Round 3 & Final Round 1-2:30 p.m. Golf Channel
Since moving to TPC Deere Run 14 years ago, dramatic finishes have been a hallmark of the John Deere Classic, with the champion decided five times in sudden death playoffs and six times by one shot on the final hole. Jordan Spieth, who last year took the PGA TOUR by storm during his rookie campaign, became the youngest winner on the PGA TOUR in 82 years when he holed out from a bunker on the 72nd hole to get into a playoff and, eventually, win. The tournament provides even more drama as players battle for the final exemption into the Open Championship. Golf Channel’s weekend airtimes are lead-in to CBS’ coverage.
U.S. Senior Open
Saturday, July 12 Round 3 2:30-6 p.m. NBC
Sunday, July 13 Final Round 2:30-6 p.m. NBC
Golf Channel on NBC heads to America’s heartland to continue its USGA championship season with live weekend coverage of the 2014 U.S. Senior Open from Pete Dye-designed Oak Tree National in Edmond, Okla. Defending Champion Kenny Perry headlines a qualified field, which includes Fred Couples, Fred Funk, Jay Haas, Hale Irwin, Bernhard Langer, Rocco Mediate and Colin Montgomerie. Golf Channel on NBC’s Dan Hicks will host NBC’s weekend coverage and will be joined by Roger Maltbie, Mark Rolfing, Notah Begay and Steve Sands. Golf Channel on NBC’s Gary Koch and Peter Jacobsen qualified to be in the field, though Koch may be part of the Golf Channel on NBC weekend broadcast depending on his performance.
Golf Central: Live From Royal Liverpool
Monday, July 14 Morning Drive 7-9 a.m. Golf Channel
Live From Royal Liverpool 7-8:30 p.m. Golf Channel
Tuesday, July 15 Morning Drive 7-11 a.m. Golf Channel
Live From Royal Liverpool 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Golf Channel
7-9 p.m. Golf Channel
Wednesday, July 16 Morning Drive 7-11a.m. Golf Channel
Live From Royal Liverpool 11a.m.-1 p.m. Golf Channel
7-9 p.m. Golf Channel
Thursday-Friday, July 17-18 Live From Royal Liverpool 7-9 p.m. Golf Channel
Saturday, July 19 Live From Royal Liverpool 2:30-3 p.m. Golf Channel
7-9 p.m. Golf Channel
Sunday, July 20 Live From Royal Liverpool 1:30-3 p.m. Golf Channel
7-9 p.m. Golf Channel
Golf Channel will have the season’s third major championship covered from all angles with more than 28 hours of news and feature programming surrounding the 143rd Open Championship, beginning Monday, July 14, from Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, England, and Golf Channel’s U.S.-based studios.
PLAYER NEWS CONFERENCES: Morning Drive and Live From Royal Liverpool will feature scheduled player news conferences staged from Royal Liverpool on Tuesday, July 15, and Wednesday, July 16.
BROADCAST TEAM AND SPECIAL GUESTS: Reporting from Royal Liverpool will be the tandem of Rich Lerner and Frank Nobilo, who will be joined by Todd Lewis, Tim Rosaforte and Ken Schofield. Making special appearances Wednesday through Sunday will be Peter Alliss, considered one of golf’s all-time great commentators and nicknamed “The Voice of Golf,” and 2014 Senior PGA Championship winner Colin Montgomerie. Ryan Burr, Brandel Chamblee, Tripp Isenhour and Kelly Tilghman will host coverage from Golf Channel Studios in Orlando.
EDITORIAL FEATURES: Live From Royal Liverpool will showcase entertaining and informative features throughout the week, including:
Phil Redux – The Open Championship was the major that Phil Mickelson was never supposed to win. His past struggles and a perception by many that his game didn’t fit links-style golf were tossed on their head with his shocking win for the ages in 2013.
Champagne Tony Lema – He played with a flair that matched his nickname and was, arguably, the second-most popular player of his era behind only Arnold Palmer. His 12 wins on the PGA TOUR were complemented by the 1964 Open Championship. Two years later, Lema was killed in plane crash at just 32 years old. Rich Lerner tells the story of one of the great characters the game has ever known.
Westy Close – Eight times since 2008, Lee Westwood has finished in the top-3 at major championships. With a two-stroke lead heading into the final round, 2013 seemed to be his break-through year, but he faltered down the stretch.
Hoylake – Established in 1869, Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, England, has hosted 12 Open Championships, with the likes of Roberto De Vicenzo, Walter Hagen, Bobby Jones and Tiger Woods hoisting the Claret Jug there.
American Century Championship
Friday, July 18 Round 1 4-7 p.m. NBCSN
Saturday, July 19 Round 1 Replay 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Golf Channel
Round 2 3-6 p.m. NBC
Sunday, July 20 Round 2 Replay 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Golf Channel
Final Round 3-6 p.m. NBC
Monday, July 21 Final Round Replay 1-4 p.m. Golf Channel
Legendary golf Hall-of-Fame superstar Annika Sorenstam will tee it up on equal terms with the accomplished pro-athlete golfers in the 54-hole, $600,000 competition at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course for the 25th anniversary of the American Century Championship. Roger Maltbie and Bob Papa will anchor the coverage with Notah Begay, Gary Koch and Mark Rolfing contributing from the golf course. Alex Flanagan will conduct player interviews. Tournament scoring is based on a modified Stableford format with higher points awarded for better scores on each hole played. Other celebrities scheduled to compete include John Elway, Ray Allen, Steph Curry, Aaron Rodgers, Jerry Rice, Jason Kidd, Steve Kerr and Ray Romano. Annual contenders include Trent Dilfer, Jeremy Roenick, Mark Rypien and 2013 Champion Billy Joe Tolliver.