NBC Sports Group Primed For An Unprecedented More Than 110 Live Coverage Hours for U.S. Open Championship, June 8-16

By Golf Channel Public RelationsMay 29, 2013, 6:51 pm

Unprecedented television coverage dedicated to the 2013 U.S. Open Championship is on tap for golf fans, with NBC and Golf Channel scheduled to present more than 70 live hours of tournament and news coverage, June 9-16.

“Golf Channel on NBC” will present 17 hours of live tournament coverage of the season’s second major championship Thursday through Sunday, June 13-16, from famed Merion Golf Club, located in Ardmore, Pa., just outside Philadelphia.  Complementing NBC’s live coverage, Golf Channel will air 56 hours of wraparound programming, featuring the latest news and highlights on its franchise show, LIVE FROM THE U.S. OPEN; top instruction from the range at Merion Golf Club with Michael Breed on THE GOLF FIX; lively discussion and debate with GREY GOOSE 19th HOLE; and an original documentary, 1971 U.S. OPEN:  LEE TREVINO AN AMERICAN CHAMPION, chronicling Trevino’s dramatic U.S. Open playoff victory over Jack Nicklaus at Merion in 1971.

NBCU digital properties – GolfChannel.com, NBCSports.com, CSNPhilly.com and mobile applications NBC Sports Live Extra and Golf Live Extra – are teaming up to provide the most comprehensive digital coverage of the U.S. Open to date.

Hosting its fifth U.S. Open Championship, Merion Golf Club and the Philadelphia region boast a rich history with the sport.  Providing comprehensive daily coverage from a regional perspective, the NBC Sports Group’s Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia and NBC’s owned and operated NBC10 station will present an additional 44 hours of U.S. Open coverage as Philadelphians celebrate the City of Brotherly Love’s 10th Major Golf Championship.

TOURNAMENT BROADCAST TEAM:  Bob Costas will reprise his role as network host, when “Golf Channel on NBC” presents its weekend U.S. Open coverage.  Dan Hicks and Johnny Miller will anchor NBC’s four-day coverage, and will be joined by tower reporters Gary Koch and Peter Jacobsen; on-course reporters Roger Maltbie, Mark Rolfing and Notah Begay; interviewer Steve Sands; and essayist Jimmy Roberts.  The team brings intimate knowledge of Merion’s challenging layout, with Miller, Jacobsen, Maltbie and Koch having competed in the U.S. Open the last time it was played at the course in 1981.

U.S. OPEN AIRTIMES ON NBC (all times ET):
June 13                 Thursday                             Round 1                               3-5 p.m.
June 14                 Friday                                    Round 2                               3-5 p.m.
June 15                 Saturday                              Round 3                               Noon-7:30 p.m.
June 16                 Sunday                                 Final Round                        Noon-7:30 p.m.

56 LIVE HOURS OF NEWS COVERAGE:  Fans will keep connected to the competition and players through 56 hours of live wraparound news coverage of the U.S. Open throughout the week, featuring highlights, inside analysis, player interviews and news conferences, special guest appearances and compelling features.  LIVE FROM THE U.S. OPEN begins Monday with pre-tournament player news conferences and airs throughout the week before and after tournament play. LIVE FROM THE U.S. OPEN will originate from two sets at Merion Golf Club – the main stage overlooking the clubhouse and a stage positioned near the player practice range.  The U.S. Open will be the topic of discussion all week on MORNING DRIVE, the network’s daily morning show.  Co-host and travel expert Matt Ginella will highlight some of the best places to play if you’re heading to Merion or visiting Philadelphia anytime, and Gary Williams will walk the course with USGA Executive Director Mike Davis to discuss Merion’s unique set-up and how Davis gets the course U.S. Open ready.  John Cook, who tied for fourth place in the 1981 U.S. Open at Merion, will be in studio all week.  Additionally, THE GOLF FIX  (Monday, 6-7 p.m. ET) and GREY GOOSE 19th HOLE (expanding to one hour Wednesday, June 12, 6-7 p.m. ET) will air live from Merion Golf Club.

In addition to news and expert analysis, Golf Channel’s LIVE FROM THE U.S. OPEN telecasts will incorporate special production elements to bring viewers even closer to the players.  Robotic and jib cameras providing sweeping video will be positioned throughout the player practice area, capturing unique inside-the-ropes footage.  And a special “Fly Cam” will be fixed to a cable stretched across the entire length of the practice range and over the players, designed to feature unique angles of players as they prepare for competition.  This footage also will be utilized during NBC’s live coverage to showcase the leaders as they prepare for competition.

LIVE FROM THE U.S. OPEN GUEST CONTRIBUTORS:  In addition to Golf Channel’s team of analysts and reporters, LIVE FROM THE U.S. OPEN will welcome 2013 World Golf Hall of Fame inductee Colin Montgomerie and PGA TOUR pro Arron Oberholser as guest analysts during the week.   And with the unpredictability Mother Nature has already wrought on the 2013 golf season so far, LIVE FROM THE U.S. OPEN will keep on top of the weather conditions that may affect play with the help of The Weather Channel’s Jim Cantore, who will serve as the show’s weather expert.

LIVE FROM THE U.S. OPEN FEATURES:
• The Boutique Open – Merion Golf Club’s friendly confines and tight layout will be a difficult test for the players, who will need to have a clear strategy of attack.
• Nobilo Goes Tee to Green – Nobilo recently scouted the Merion Golf Club layout and will host a series of features that will provide insight into the various ways players will try to conquer the golf course.
• Michael Breed Tutorial – Merion features seven, par-4 holes less than 430 yards, so a short game will be critical to success.  Breed, host of THE GOLF FIX, will demonstrate how wedge play could mean the difference between success and failure.
• Merion History – Merion Golf Club has played host to more USGA Championships than any course in America and has created some of the most memorable moments.  It’s where Bobby Jones completed golf’s Grand Slam at the 1930 U.S. Amateur and where Ben Hogan striped the awe-inspiring 1-iron on the 72nd hole in the 1950 U.S. Open.
• Jim Simons – Simons was the last amateur to lead a major championship after 54 holes but, despite his success in the tournament, his career, subsequently, fell on hard times.
• David Graham – Graham won the 1981 U.S. Open with a score of 67 on Sunday, what some say was the perfect round of golf.
• The Francis Ouimet Story – 100th anniversary of Ouimet’s unlikely victory as an amateur at the 1913 U.S. Open at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass., against the likes of superstars Harry Vardon and Ted Ray has been credited with bringing golf to the American sporting mainstream.
• Jim Furyk:  As part of Golf Channel’s celebration of Father’s Day, Golf Channel will celebrate the 10th anniversary of Pennsylvania native Jim Furyk’s 2003 U.S. Open win at Olympia Fields Country Club outside Chicago.  Furyk has always been coached by his father, Mike, who has nurtured one of golf’s most unusual homemade swings.
• The First Tee – A look at the amazing life story of youngster, Zakki Blatt, who overcame the odds with the help of The First Tee.  The feature also takes a closer look at the Philadelphia chapter of The First Tee.

TREVINO 1971 U.S. OPEN RETROSPECTIVE:  As the U.S. Open prepares for its return to Merion, NBC and Golf Channel will present 1971 U.S. OPEN:  LEE TREVINO AN AMERICAN CHAMPION, a 60-minute retrospective documenting Trevino’s life and victory at Merion in 1971, and how he claimed his place among the great champions in U.S. Open history by beating the great Jack Nicklaus in a Monday playoff.  Produced in association with the United States Golf Association, the documentary will premiere on NBC on Sunday, June 9 at 5 p.m. ET, and air throughout June on Golf Channel.

COMCAST SPORTSNET PHILADELPHIA/NBC10

Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia and NBC10 Philadelphia will present Philadelphians with the most comprehensive local coverage of the 2013 U.S. Open Championship, with the majority of content originating from Merion Golf Club:

Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia:
• U.S. Open Preview – Philadelphia sports icons Jimmy Rollins, Jeremy Roenick, Jay Wright and Comcast SportsNet’s Neil Hartman hit the links at Merion for this special preview titled An Open Challenge, premiering Saturday, June 8 at 6:30 p.m. ET.
• Made in Merion – U.S. Open special nightly presentations, hosted by Comcast SportsNet anchor Neil Hartman from Merion Golf Club featuring interviews and analysis with golfers and experts. Made in Merion premiers Sunday, June 9 at 7 p.m.
• Philly Sports Talk – Daily roundtable hosted by Michael Barkann from Merion Golf Club airing each day at 5 p.m.
• SportsNite and SportsRise – Comcast SportsNet’s daily news programs will provide daily reports, live leaderboard updates, historical “Fast Facts” and golfing tips. SportsNite airs at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.  SportsRise airs at 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. weekdays and 7 a.m. on weekends.
• Vignettes:  A series of 30-second vignettes focused on the U.S. Open will air leading up to and including U.S. Open week.  Several examples include:
    o A Championship Moment will feature the history of the U.S. Open through the eyes of golf historian and Golf Channel contributor Martin Davis.
    o Merion Moments is a series featuring famous athletes, such as Julius “Dr. J” Erving, U.S. skier Bode Miller, boxer Bernard Hopkins and many others discussing the U.S. Open.
• Online Coverage:  CSNPhilly.com will create a special section on the website dedicated to U.S. Open coverage from CSNPhilly.com and GolfChannel.com writers.

NBC10 Philadelphia:
• Themed specials – NBC10 will televise six, 30-minute specials titled Tee off at Merion, touching on everything U.S. Open, from history to tournament updates.  The specials, hosted by Vai Sikahema, John Clark and Jacqueline London, will air:
    o Saturday, June 8, 7:30 p.m.
    o Thursday, June 13, 7 p.m.
    o Friday, June 14, 7 p.m.
    o Saturday, June 15, 7:30 p.m.
    o Sunday, June 16, 11:30 a.m.
    o Sunday, June 16, 11:30 p.m.
Updates and Vignettes:  NBC10 will provide extensive coverage in all newscasts, and will air 18 vignettes focused on Merion Golf Club’s 18 holes. 

DIGITAL COVERAGE:  NBC and Golf Channel digital properties – GolfChannel.com, as well as mobile applications NBC Sports Live Extra and Golf Live Extra – are teaming up to provide the most comprehensive digital coverage of the U.S. Open to date.

Live Streaming
Live tournament coverage will be streamed on NBCSports.com and via the NBC Sports Live Extra app.  Fans who are customers of participating cable, satellite, telco and other video subscription services, will be able to enjoy 24/7 streaming of Golf Channel content via GolfChannel.com and Golf Channel’s mobile application, Golf Live Extra.

Editorial, Blogs & Live Chats
GolfChannel.com’s dedicated staff of writers – including Rex Hoggard, Jason Sobel, Randall Mell, Ryan Lavner and Jay Coffin – will be on site at Merion Golf Club all week, providing the most up-to-date news, features and blogs posts.  Joe Posnanski also will post from NBCSports.com.  The team will preview the U.S. Open with features exploring the five-year anniversary of Tiger Woods’ last major championship win; Rickie Fowler on the challenge of Merion, while reflecting on his play there in 2009 as part of the U.S. Walker Cup team; a history of Merion; and a profile of David Graham, the last winner of the U.S. Open at Merion and an International Team captain who was ousted by his players during a Presidents Cup competition.  Sobel and contributor John Hawkins also will host live chats during each day of competition.

Social
GolfChannel.com features the Golf Channel Social Lounge (www.GolfChannel.com/sociallounge), a recently launched social center that aggregates all social media posts related to the U.S. Open in one location on the site.  The Social Lounge currently is aggregating all content on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram mentioning @usopengolf.

PACE OF PLAY:  Golf Channel will mark the beginning of its U.S. Open coverage on June 1 with a unique, month-long program dedicated to help promote ideas and initiatives that improve pace of play and assist with the growth of the game.   Titled “It’s About Time,” the company-wide campaign will be conducted in partnership with the United States Golf Association, with each week of the month tied to concepts that will help golfers and golf course operators understand the problems and adopt new strategies for faster play.

XFINITY LIVE!:  Philadelphians can join the fun at XFINITY Live! Philadelphia, the dining and entertainment district in the South Philadelphia Sports Complex, where NBC and Golf Channel will host a public celebration of the U.S. Open Championship, complete with golf simulators, putting greens, photo booths, contests and giveaways, Golf Channel personalities and animated characters from favorite Universal Pictures feature films.  The two events will take place Friday, June 14 from 4-8 p.m., and a more family friendly gathering on Saturday, June 15, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

NBC Sports Group U.S. Open Coverage

Show                                           Network                           Airtime (all times ET)
Saturday, June 8
An Open Challenge                        CSN Philly                           6:30-7 p.m.
Tee off at Merion                           NBC10                                7:30-8 p.m.

Sunday, June
Made in Merion                              CSN Philly                           7-7:30 p.m.

Monday, June 10
Morning Drive                               Golf Channel                        7-9 a.m.
Live From the U.S. Open                Golf Channel                        11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. (news conferences)
Philly Sports Talk                          CSN Philly                            5-6 p.m.
The Golf Fix                                 Golf Channel                         6-7 p.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                          7-8 p.m.
Made in Merion                             CSN Philly                             7-7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, June 11
Morning Drive                              Golf Channel                          7-9 a.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                          9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Philly Sports Talk                         CSN Philly                              5-6 p.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                          7-9 p.m.
Made in Merion                             CSN Philly                             7-7:30 p.m.

Wednesday, June 12
Morning Drive                              Golf Channel                          7-9 a.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                          9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Philly Sports Talk                          CSN Philly                             5-6 p.m.
Grey Goose 19th Hole                   Golf Channel                          6-7 p.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                          7-9 p.m.
Made in Merion                             CSN Philly                             7-7:30 p.m.

Thursday, June 13
Morning Drive                              Golf Channel                          6-7 a.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                          7-9 a.m.
U.S. Open Live Coverage              ESPN                                     9 a.m.-3 p.m.
U.S. Open live coverage                NBC                                      3-5 p.m.
Philly Sports Talk                          CSN Philly                             5-6 p.m.
U.S. Open live coverage                ESPN                                     5-7 p.m.
Made in Merion                            CSN Philly                              7-7:30 p.m.
Tee off at Merion                          NBC10                                   7:30-8 p.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                           7-9 p.m.

Friday, June 14
Morning Drive                              Golf Channel                           6-7 a.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                           7-9 a.m.
U.S. Open Live Coverage               ESPN                                     9 a.m.-3 p.m.
U.S. Open live coverage                NBC                                       3-5 p.m.
Philly Sports Talk                          CSN Philly                              5-6 p.m.
U.S. Open live coverage                ESPN                                      5-7 p.m.
Made in Merion                             CSN Philly                               7-7:30 p.m.
Tee off at Merion                           NBC10                                    7:30-8 p.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                             7-9 p.m.

Saturday, June 15
Morning Drive                              Golf Channel                            7-9 a.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                            9-11 a.m.
Morning Drive                              Golf Channel                            11 a.m.-Noon
U.S. Open live coverage                NBC                                         Noon-7:30 p.m.
Made in Merion                             CSN Philly                                7:30-8 p.m.
Tee off at Merion                          NBC10                                     7:30-8 p.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                              7:30-9:30 p.m.

Sunday, June 16
Morning Drive                              Golf Channel                              7-9 a.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                              9-11 a.m.
Morning Drive                              Golf Channel                              11 a.m.-Noon
Tee off at Merion                          NBC10                                       11:30 a.m.-Noon
U.S. Open live coverage                NBC                                           Noon-7:30 p.m.
Made in Merion                            CSN Philly                                   7:30-8 p.m.
Live From the U.S. Open               Golf Channel                               7:30-9:30 p.m.
Tee off at Merion                          NBC10                                        11:30 p.m.-12:05 a.m.


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TT Postscript: Finally, officially, Tiger Woods is back

By Tiger TrackerSeptember 23, 2018, 11:47 pm

ATLANTA, Ga. – He’s baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack. Here are some things I think I think after watching Tiger Woods end a five-year winless drought and capture his 80th career PGA Tour victory Sunday at the Tour Championship.

• There’s only one place to start. That walk down 18. Tiger Woods leading throngs of maniacs (and me) into an arena only he can create, only he can star in, only he can thrive in. That was a security nightmare, and I’m sure whatever entities hold the insurance policies on Tiger and Rory were pulling their corporate hair out, but that was a scene you can’t really stage. A scene you can’t recreate. Not like that. Not with that level of exaltation. Every single person who has followed Tiger Woods’ career – every single person who loves the game of golf – felt like they were following Tiger in that crowd up 18. Regardless of whether you root for him or against him, you know no one else in the game can create a spectacle like that. After the surgeries, and the scandals, and the personal demons, Tiger Woods teared up, tapped in, put his arms in the air, and soaked in a kind of redemption none of us will ever fully understand.

• He admitted he almost cried twice on the way in. He almost cried in the crowd en route to the front bunker, and he almost cried after Rory McIlroy ceded the stage on the 72nd green. For years, he was invulnerable. Impenetrable. That was his aura. That aura was later shattered at too many different points along the way. There was a popular thought that Tiger Woods couldn’t be Tiger Woods without that same air of invincibility – that edge. But on Sunday, the golf world and Tiger himself saw that he could be vulnerable and a champion. Notah Begay perhaps put it best when he suggested on Golf Central that Tiger could, moving forward, strike a balance between playing with an edge and playing with a sense of gratitude.



• That gratitude seems genuine, too. He thought he was done. More than that, at his lowest point, he didn’t know what was going to be left of his life.

“Am I going to be able to sit, stand, walk, lay down without feeling the pain that I was in? I just didn't want to live that way,” he said in the interview room. “This is how the rest of my life is going to be? It's going to be a tough rest of my life. And so – I was beyond playing. I couldn't sit. I couldn't walk. I couldn't lay down without feeling the pain in my back and my leg.”

Now the roars, the support, the embrace, the victory – it all means a little more. Tiger Woods seems like a guy who took everything he had for granted, faced down the possibility of losing it all, and came out on the other end.


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• As for what exactly he really went through, maybe we’ll never know. Maybe we’ll never know how deep and dark that hole went. But clearly there’s an inner circle that knows. And that includes some of Tiger’s colleagues on Tour.

“You know, the people who are close to me saw the struggles and what I was going through, and some of the players that I'm pretty close to, they've really helped throughout this process and the last few years,” he said. “Their support and some of those things that they said coming off that last green meant a lot to me.”

• Tiger has been the face of golf for the last two decades. And that’s why it’s so weird to think that anyone can conceive of him as anything other than the most dominant player in the history of the game. But his kids are young enough that they really don’t know. Hearing him discuss his family Sunday night was both heartbreaking and heartwarming.

“I think they understand a little bit of what Dad does now. I hadn't won any tournaments in which they can remember, so I think this will be a little bit different for them. … A lot of times they equated golf to pain because every time I did it, I would hurt, and it would cause me more pain. And so now they're seeing a little bit of joy and seeing how much fun it is for me to be able to do this again.”

• So where do we go from here? To Paris, where Tiger through a wry smile suggested that everyone is going to sleep well on the U.S. plane tonight. Uh huh.

• But what’s next in that big-picture sense? Does he pass Sam? Does he catch Jack? Hell, I don’t know. I never thought we’d get to this point again. And neither did he. Maybe it’ll never get any better than this. But you know, it just might.

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With 80 wins, Woods eyes 'chipping away' at Snead

By Mercer BaggsSeptember 23, 2018, 11:38 pm

ATLANTA – Round numbers just feel better than the crooked ones.

80.

It’s only one more than 79, but it’s prettier and more historically significant.

“Eighty is a big number,” Tiger Woods said after winning the Tour Championship to reach that amazing tally in Tour wins. “I’ve been sitting on 79 for about five years now, and to get 80 is a pretty damned good feeling.”

Not since the 2013 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational had Woods hoisted a trophy. And in those five winless years, he endured multiple surgeries; more personal turmoil; and doubt that he’d ever live a comfortable life, let alone play professionally.

80.

That puts him two wins from tying Sam Snead on the all-time PGA Tour wins list. What once seemed like a lock, then appeared unlikely, is attainable once again.


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This is more than just a nice, round number, however. More than an opportunity to be called the winningest Tour player ever.

For Woods, this is a recognized and appreciative product of grace and good fortune.

“To kind of get to the 80 mark is a big number," Woods said. 'Sam is still ahead of me. I've still got, I feel like, a chance to play some more golf and maybe I'll keep chipping away at that number and maybe surpass it. 

“But I just think that what I've gone through and what I've dealt with, I've gotten lucky, to be honest with you. I've gotten very lucky. I'm not playing a full-contact sport or I've got to move people around in that regard. At 42 years old with a fused lower spine; that's not going to happen.

“But in this sport, it can. I'm lucky to have the opportunity to have the people around me to have supported me and worked through this process with me, and I've ground out a chance to win golf tournaments again.”

 

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Key stats from Woods' historic win at East Lake

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 23, 2018, 10:47 pm

Tiger Woods won his 80th career PGA Tour title on Sunday with a two-stroke victory at the Tour Championship. Here are the key stats from the final round at East Lake.

• 80th career PGA Tour win; first since 2013 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational

• Two wins behind Sam Snead for most in PGA Tour history

• Snead was 47 years old when he won his 80th career PGA Tour title (Woods is 42)

• 43-for-45 converting outright 54-hole leads in PGA Tour career

• 24-for-24 converting 54-hole leads of three or more shots

• First win in 1,876 days; 118 players won on PGA Tour between Woods' wins

• Third career Tour Championship victory (most all-time)

• Has won Tour Championship in three different decades (1999, 2007, 2018)

• Fifth PGA Tour event won in three different decades (1990s, 2000s, 2010s)

• Projected to move to 13th in World Ranking with victory

• Was ranked 1,199 before beginning of 2017 Hero World Challenge

• Snead won 11 times after turning 43 (Woods turns 43 in December)

• Eighth PGA Tour win in Georgia; fourth-most of any state (Fla., Calif., Ohio)

• Extended lead to four strokes with birdie on first hole of round

• Second in field in strokes gained: putting this week

• First in field in scrambling this week (17-for-24)

• Finished second in FedExCup; was making first Tour Championship start since 2013

• Led field in one-putt percentage this week (51.4%)

• Finishes season first on PGA Tour in strokes gained: approach

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

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Social media explodes over Tiger's 80th win

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 23, 2018, 10:45 pm

After a five-year hiatus, Tiger Woods made his triumphant return to the winner's circle on Sunday at the Tour Championship.

As evidenced by a quick look at social media, Woods' win set the golf world on fire, with everyone from Jack Nicklaus to Michelle Wie sending their congratulations to the 42-year-old.

Here are the best reactions from a wild Sunday at East Lake, where Woods claimed PGA Tour victory No. 80: