Golf Channel Tournament Airtimes and Notes: June 23-29

By Golf Channel Public RelationsJune 22, 2016, 8:40 pm

Tiger Woods Hosts the Quicken Loans National at Congressional Country Club

 Ko, Lewis, Piller and Lopez Headline Walmart NW Arkansas Championship

 Steve Stricker Host American Family Insurance Championship in Wisconsin

 Five Open Championship Places Available This Week at BMW International Open

 20 PGA Championship Places Available at PGA Professional Championship


ORLANDO, Fla. (June 22, 2016) – The PGA TOUR returns to Congressional Country Club this week for the Quicken Loans National, headlined by Keegan Bradley, Ernie Els, Rickie Fowler, Jim Furyk, Davis Love III, Patrick Reed and Justin Thomas. Tournament host Tiger Woods will be onsite this week, an event that benefits the Tiger Woods Foundation. The Quicken Loans National also serves as an Open Qualifying Series event, where the top-four tournament finishers in the top-12 who are not already exempt will qualify for The Open. The LPGA Tour this week is in Arkansas for the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship, kicking off Friday and is one of three 54-hole events on the 2016 LPGA schedule. Wisconsin welcomes a new PGA TOUR Champions event this week, the American Family Insurance Championship, taking place at the home golf course of the University of Wisconsin Badgers – University Ridge Golf Club – and hosted by 12-time PGA TOUR winner Steve Stricker. The European Tour returns to Germany this week for the BMW International Open, where five places in The Open are available to the top-five place in the top-20 in the Race to Dubai not already exempt at the end of the tournament. Beginning Sunday, 312 PGA of America professionals will compete for 20 places in the field in the upcoming PGA Championship at the PGA Professional Championship, taking place at Turning Stone Resort in upstate New York.


Quicken Loans National

Dates: June 23-26

Venue: Congressional Country Club (Blue Course), Bethesda, Maryland

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern):

Thursday         3:30-6:30 p.m. (Live) / 7:30-10:30 p.m. (Replay)

Friday              3:30-6:30 p.m. (Live) / 9 p.m.-Midnight (Replay)

Saturday          1-2:30 p.m. (Live) / 9 p.m.-1:30 am (Replay)

Sunday            1-2:30 p.m. (Live) / 11 p.m.-3 am (Replay)

Broadcast Notes:

Tiger Woods returns as host: Tiger Woods returns as tournament host for the Quicken Loans National, a tournament that benefits the Tiger Woods Foundation. Woods will not be competing this week, and conducted a news conference Wednesday at Congressional Country Club. Video from the news conference is available online at

Merritt defends: Troy Merritt defeated Rickie Fowler by three strokes at Robert Trent Jones Golf club in 2015 to earn his first career PGA TOUR win.

Headlining the field: Bryson DeChambeau, Ernie Els, Rickie Fowler, Jim Furyk, Davis Love III, Tory Merritt, Jon Rahm, Patrick Reek, Vijay Singh, Justin Thomas.

Golf Channel Broadcast Team:

Play by Play:   Terry Gannon

Analyst:           Nick Faldo

Tower:             Matt Gogel, Peter Kostis

On Course:      Phil Blackmar

Interviews:      George Savaricas



Walmart NW Arkansas Championship

Dates: June 24-26

Venue: Pinnacle Country Club, Rogers, Arkansas

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern):

Friday              6:30-8:30 p.m. (Live)

Saturday          5:30-8 p.m. (Live) / 4-6:30 am (Sunday Replay)

Sunday            5:30-8 p.m. (Live)

Broadcast Notes:

Rookie Feature – Rachel Rohanna: LPGA Rookie Rachel Rohanna will be featured during Friday’s opening round of play.

Arkansas Represented: Former Walmart NW Arkansas Championship winner Stacy Lewis will be joined by four fellow Razorbacks this week: LPGA rookie Gaby Lopez, Arkansas freshman Maria Fassi, junior Alana Uriell and recent graduate Regina Plasencia.

Choi defends: Na Yeon Choi defeated Mika Miyazato by two strokes for her 8th career LPGA Tour win.

Headlining the field: Carlota Ciganda, Julieta Granada, Brooke Henderson, Karine Icher, Juli Inkster, Aryia Jutanugarn, Cristie Kerr, Sei Young Kim, Lydia Ko, Minjee Lee, Stacy Lewis, Gaby Lopez, Azahara Munoz, Gerina Piller, Michelle Wie

Golf Channel Broadcast Team

Play by Play:   Tom Abbott

Analyst:           Judy Rankin

Tower:             Jim Gallagher, Jr.

On Course:      Jerry Foltz, Karen Stupples

Interviews:      Lisa Cornwell


PGA TOUR Champions

American Family Insurance Championship

Dates: June 24-26

Venue: University Ridge Golf Club – Madison, Wisconsin

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern):

Friday              12:30-2:30 p.m. (Live) / Midnight-2 a.m. (Replay)

Saturday          3-5:30 p.m. (Live) / 1:30-4 a.m. (Sunday Replay)

Sunday            3-5:30 p.m. (Live) / 3-5 a.m. (Monday Replay)

Broadcast Notes:

Inaugural Event: This is the inaugural year of the American Family Insurance Championship, taking place at the home golf course of the University of Wisconsin Badgers and hosted by 12-time PGA TOUR winner Steve Stricker.

Headlining the Field: Billy Andrade, Woody Austin, John Cook, John Daly, Jay Haas, Bernhard Langer, Tom Lehman, Jeff Maggert, Rocco Mediate

Golf Channel Broadcast Team

Play by Play:   Bob Papa

Analyst:           Lanny Wadkins

Tower:             Curt Byrum, John Mahaffey

On Course:      Billy Ray Brown


European Tour

BMW International Open

Dates: June 23-26

Venue: Golf club Gut Larchenhof, Pulheim, Germany

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern):

Thursday         5:30-7:30 a.m. (Live) / 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. (Live)

Friday              5:30-7:30 a.m. (Live) / 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. (Live)

Saturday          7:30-11:30 a.m. (Live)

Sunday            6:30-11 a.m. (Live)

Broadcast Notes:

Five Open Championship spots up for grabs: Five places in the field for The Open are available this week as the top-five places in the top-20 in the Race to Dubai not already exempt at the end of the tournament will receive an invitation to compete in the year’s third major championship.

Larrazabal defends: Pablo Larrazabal defeated Henirk Stenson by one stroke to earn his fourth career European Tour win in 2015.

Headlining the field: Alex Cejka, Thongchai Jaidee, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Pablo Larrazabal, Thorbjorn Olesen, Henrik Stenson and Danny Willett.

Golf Channel Broadcast Team:

Studio Host:    Scott Walker

Play by Play:   Warren Humphreys

Analyst:           Julian Tutt

On Course:      Jay Townsend


PGA of America

PGA Professional Championship

Dates: June 26-29

Venue: Turning Stone Resort (Atunyote Golf Club) – Verona, New York

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern):

Sunday            8-10 p.m. (Tape Delay) / 5-7 am (Monday Replay)

Monday           3-6 p.m. (Live) / 3-5 a.m. (Tuesday Replay)

Tuesday           3-6 p.m. (Live) / 3-5 a.m. (Wednesday Replay)

Wednesday     3-6 p.m. (Live) / 2:30-4:30 p.m. (Thursday Replay)

Broadcast Notes:

20 PGA Championship Spots Up for Grabs: 312 PGA of America Professionals will compete for 20 places in the field in the upcoming PGA Championship at Baltusrol Golf Club in New Jersey.

Golf Channel Academy Coaches in the Field: Three Golf Channel Academy Coaches are in the field at the PGA Professional Championship: Sam Kang from New Jersey Golf Academy in Roseland, N.J., Ron Philo Jr., from Golf Channel Academy at Stowe Mountain Resort in Stowe, Vt., and Tim Weinhart from the Tim Weinhart Golf Academy at Heritage Golf Links in Tucker, Ga.

Golf Channel Broadcast Team:

Play by Play: David Marr III

Analyst: Michael Breed

Tower: Gary Christian

On Course: Kay Cockerill

Interviews: Scott Walker


-NBC Sports Group-

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Europeans out to end the recent American dominance

By Ryan LavnerJuly 17, 2018, 12:59 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – In golf’s biggest events, the Americans have left the rest of the world feeling red, white and mostly blue.

If you’re wondering whether the U.S. currently holds a meaningful title, the answer is probably yes.

Golf’s four majors? Yep.

The Ryder Cup? Indeed.

The No. 1 player in the world? Absolutely.

The Presidents, Solheim, Walker, Palmer and Curtis Cups? Uh-huh.

It’s been a popular talking point at the men’s majors, as Europe’s finest players have been peppered about why they’ve all seemingly fallen under Uncle Sam’s spell.

After all, the Americans haven’t ripped off five major wins in a row like this since 1981-82 – when Justin Rose was still in diapers.

“I don’t know what I’d put it to down to,” the Englishman said Tuesday, “other than the American boys in the world rankings and on the golf course are performing really, really well. The top end of American golf right now is incredibly strong.”

Since 2000, the Americans have taken titles at eight of the nine courses on the modern Open rota. The only one they’ve yet to conquer is Carnoustie, and that’s probably because they’ve only had one crack at it, in 2007, when an Irishman, Padraig Harrington, prevailed in a playoff.

Not since Tom Watson in 1975 has a U.S. player survived Carnoustie, arguably the most difficult links on the planet. But Americans ranging from Dustin Johnson to Tiger Woods comprise six of the oddsmakers' top 10 favorites, all listed at 25/1 or better.

“America, there’s no doubt about it, and there’s no other way to put it, other than they have an exceptional bunch of players at the moment,” Tommy Fleetwood said. “It just so happens that it has been a run of American golfers that have won majors, but at the same time, they’ve generally been the best players in the world at the time that they’ve won them.

“You don’t really look at them as a nationality. You just look at them as players and people, and you can understand why they’re the ones winning the majors.”

Indeed, there’s not a fluke among them.

Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Since this American run began last summer at Erin Hills, Brooks Koepka (twice), Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Patrick Reed have hoisted trophies. All were inside the top 25 in the world when they won. All were multiple-time winners on the world stage before that major. And all, most ominously for Europe, were 29 or younger.

“There’s a bit of camaraderie amongst all of them,” Rose said. “I know Brooks and Dustin are incredibly close, and you’ve got Rickie (Fowler) and Justin Thomas and Jordan as a group are all really close. It’s working really well for them. They’re spurring each other on.”

That’s why there’s even more anticipation than usual for the Ryder Cup. The Americans haven’t won on foreign soil in a quarter century, but this band of brothers is better and closer than those who have tried and failed before them. Couple that with a few aging stars on the European side, and there’s a growing sense that the Americans could be on the verge of a dominant stretch.

That should sound familiar.

During an eight-major span in 2010-11, the most common refrain was: What’s Wrong with American Golf? International players captured seven consecutive majors, including six in a row at one point. They took over the top spot in the world rankings. They turned the Ryder Cup into a foregone conclusion. In the fall of 2010, Colin Montgomerie pounded his chest and declared that there’d been a “changing of the guard over to Europe,” and it was hard to find fault in his reasoning.

“European golf was very healthy a few years ago for a long time,” McIlroy said. “It seemed like every major someone from the island of Ireland turned up to, we were winning it. It doesn’t seem that long ago.”

Because it wasn’t.

So even though it’s been more than a year since an International player held any title of consequence, these types of runs are cyclical, and Europe in particular has no shortage of contenders.

Major drought or not, McIlroy is a threat every time he tees it up. Rose turns 38 in two weeks, but he’s playing arguably the best golf of his career, recording a top-10 finish in a ridiculous 17 of his past 21 starts. Fleetwood is fresh off a runner-up finish at the U.S. Open, where he closed with 63. Jon Rahm is a top-5 machine. Alex Noren just won on the Ryder Cup course in France.

“I think Tommy, clearly, showed how close the Europeans are to challenging that dominance as well,” Rose said. “So it’s not like we’re a mile behind. It’s just that they’re on a great run right now, and there’s no reason why a European player shouldn’t come through this week.”

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Links to the past: Tiger's return revives Open memories

By Rex HoggardJuly 17, 2018, 12:51 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tiger Woods rekindles his love affair with links golf this week at Carnoustie, which seems about right considering his introduction to the ancient ways of the game began here on the Angus coast.

It was here on the most brutal of the Open Championship rota courses that a 19-year-old Tiger first played links golf at the 1995 Scottish Open, an eye-opening and enlightening experience.

“I remember my dad on the range with me, saying, ‘Are you ever going to hit the ball past the 100 yard sign?’” Woods recalled on Tuesday at Carnoustie, his first start at The Open since 2015. “I said, ‘No, I'm just enjoying this. Are you kidding me? This is the best.’”

During this most recent comeback, Tiger has been all smiles. A new, relaxed version of his former self made calm and approachable by age and the somber influence of injury. But this week has been different.

During a practice round with Justin Thomas on Monday he laughed his way all the way around the brown and bouncy seaside layout. Much of that had to do with his return to the unique ways of links golf, the creative left side of his brain taking the wheel from the normally measured right side for one glorious week.

He talked of game plans and strategic advantages on a parched pitch that has seen drives rolling out over 400 yards. At his core, Tiger is a golf nerd for all the right reasons and this kind of cerebral test brings out the best of that off-the-charts golf IQ.

Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Although there are no shortages of defining moments in Tiger’s career and one can make all sorts of arguments for what would be his seminal moment – from the 1997 Masters to the 2008 U.S. Open –the 2006 Open Championship at Royal Liverpool stands out, based on near-perfect execution.

In ’06 at Liverpool, which played to a similar shade of dusty yellow as Carnoustie will this week, Tiger hit just a single driver, opting instead for a steady diet of long irons off tees. For the week he hit 48 of 56 fairways, 58 of 72 greens and rolled the field for a two-stroke victory and his third, and most recent, claret jug.

This Open has all the makings of a similar tactical tour de force. For this championship he’s put a new 2-iron into play that’s more like a strong 1-iron (17 degrees) and imagines, given the conditions, a similar low, running menu.

“It could be that way,” Woods said when asked the similarities between this week’s conditions and the ’06 championship. “I'm not going to hit that many long clubs off the tees, just because I hit a 3-iron on Monday, down 18, I went 333 [yards]. It can get quick out here.”

If Tiger ever needed a major championship confidence boost the Carnoustie Open would be it, an inspiring walk down memory lane to a time when he was the undisputed king of golf.

“[The ’06 Open] is the closest you can compare to this,” David Duval said. “But I struggle to remember that golf course being as fast as this one. It was close, but this one is something else.”

Ernie Els had a slightly different take, albeit one that was no less ominous to the rest of the field this week.

“Liverpool is on a sand hill, this has a bit more run to it,” Els said. “But it’s got the same feel. It’s almost like St. Andrews was in 2000. Very, very fast.”

It’s worth noting that Tiger also won that ’00 Open at the Home of Golf with an even more dominant performance. It is the unique challenges of the links test that make many, even Tiger, consider the Open Championship his best chance to continue his pursuit of Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 majors.

More than any other Grand Slam gathering, The Open is blind to age and the notion of players competing past their prime. In 2008 at Royal Birkdale, then-53-year-old Greg Norman flirted with the lead until the very end, finishing tied for third; a year later at Turnberry, Tom Watson came within one hole of history at 59 years young.

“It certainly can be done,” Woods said. “You get to places like Augusta National, where it's just a big ballpark, and the golf course outgrows you, unfortunately. That's just the way it goes. But links-style golf courses, you can roll the ball. Even if I get a little bit older, I can still chase some wood or long club down there and hit the ball the same distance.”

Whether this is the week Tiger gets back into the Grand Slam game depends on his ability to replicate those performances from years past on a similarly springy course. As he exited the media center bound for the practice putting green on Tuesday he seemed renewed by the cool sea breeze and the unique challenges of playing the game’s oldest championship.

Coming back to Carnoustie is more than a reintroduction to links golf; for Tiger it’s starting to feel like a bona fide restart to his major career.

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Woods: New putter should help on slower greens

By Ryan LavnerJuly 17, 2018, 11:35 am

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tiger Woods’ ice-cold putting showed at least a few signs of heating up earlier this month at The National, where he switched putters and ranked seventh in the field on the greens.

The mallet-style putter is still in the bag as Woods prepares for The Open, and he’s hoping the heavier model with grooves will prove valuable at Carnoustie.

Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

“To be honest with you, I’ve struggled on slower greens throughout my entire career,” Woods said Tuesday. “So for me, it’s going to help on these greens, for sure.”

To combat the slower greens, Woods usually applied a strip of lead tape to his putter. But this heavier model of putter doesn’t need the extra weight, and the grooves on the putter face allow the ball to get rolling faster and hotter.

“You don’t necessarily have to do that with the grooves,” he said of the lead tape. “When I putted with the Nike putter, I didn’t have to put lead tape on the putter to get a little more weight to it. I could just leave it just the way it was. This is the same type.”  

For all of the talk about his putting woes this season, Woods still ranks 56th in strokes gained: putting. More crucial this week: He’s 102nd in approach putt performance, which quantifies how well a player lag putts.

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Woods: Open best chance for long-term major success

By Ryan LavnerJuly 17, 2018, 11:26 am

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tiger Woods is more than a decade removed from his last major title, but he said Tuesday that The Open is the major that gives him the best chance for long-term success.

“I would say yes, because of the fact that you don’t have to be long to play on a links-style golf course,” Woods said during his pre-tournament news conference. “It certainly can be done.”

Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Woods pointed to the late-career success for both Greg Norman (2008) and Tom Watson (2009), both of whom challenged for the claret jug deep into their 50s.

“Distance becomes a moot point on a links-style golf course,” he said.

That’s certainly not the case, however, at the Masters, where bombers long have thrived, or the U.S. Open, which places a premium on long and straight driving.

“You get to places like Augusta National, which is just a big ballpark, and the golf course outgrows you, unfortunately,” he said. “But links-style courses, you can roll the ball. I hit a 3-iron that went down there 330. Even if I get a little bit older, I can still chase some wood or long club down there and hit the ball the same distance.”