An excerpt from a post I did for Awful Announcing:
Fox Sports showed that trying to air 10-11 hours per day of golf is no easy task. Surely, Fox will adjust its coverage and get better for future U.S. Opens.
ESPN, though, showed how great golf coverage can be if done well. I go way back with Tirico to when he was breaking in as ABC’s host for golf. I remember telling him once at a Western Open in Chicago that I fully expected him to be the host of an Olympics some day. It still might happen if he ever leaves ESPN, but the Monday Night Football gig keeps him very happy. Bottom line: You could see back then that he is a true talent and that he would make it big.
So it always is a treat getting to hear Tirico navigate ESPN’s coverage of the British Open. The same holds true for Van Pelt. The former Golf Channel anchor not only knows the game, he has a passion for it. I would be thrilled to hear his voice on every golf telecast.
Azinger always has been a favorite. As he showed as the last victorious U.S. Ryder Cup captain, he has a bit of an edge to him. He is an entertaining listen.
Did anyone note that two of ESPN’s on-course reporters were women? It is great that Judy Rankin still is walking the fairways at age 70. Dottie Pepper also is solid with her analysis.
After watching Holly Sonders stumble her way through questions at the U.S. Open, you have more appreciation for how Tom Rinaldi handles post-round interviews. And praise to Gene Wojciechowski, one of the best in the business, for accentuating the coverage with his various features. Loved the one about the Old Course Hotel being pelted by balls by the recreational players on St. Andrews. I am proud to say I once bounced a drive off the hotel.