Now that the World Cup is over, other sporting events take the spotlight this week such as the MLB All-Star Game and the Open Championship (a.k.a. The British Open).
As Tiger Woods prepares to play in his first major championship since coming off an injury that sidelined him for the first half of this year that forced him to miss The Masters and the U.S. Open, ESPN and Golf Channel will be offering plenty of chances for viewers to see his every move at Royal Liverpool in Hoylake, England.
It actually began early Monday morning at 5:30 ET when Golf Channel aired his live press conference. Granted, early birds who were watching saw it, but this is evidence that golf really needs Tiger to attract an audience.
And if you missed that press conference, Golf Channel will air his Tuesday press conference also at 5:30 a.m. ET.
ESPN will make sure you see Tiger at the Open. It’s providing a dedicated feed on ESPN3 for as long as he plays. You’ll definitely see him playing all 18 holes on Thursday and Friday and if he makes the cut, the coverage will continue during the weekend.
ESPN says, “With Tiger Woods making his first start of the year in a major, ESPN3 will offer a feed following Woods for his entire round each day he plays. If Woods does not advance to the weekend, other players will be spotlighted.”
DirecTV subscribers will see the Tiger coverage during the Open Championship Experience on Channels 701-705.
But with Woods having not won a major since 2008, does he warrant this type of coverage? Apparently he does. Only he can move the ratings needle and only he can garner media interest unlike any other golfer. The other person who can come close is Phil Mickelson, but if Woods is in contention, the ratings for tournaments go up.
Without Tiger in The Masters and the U.S. Open this year, both tournaments suffered record ratings lows so ESPN has to be hoping that with him playing at least in the first half of this week’s Open, its ratings have to improve by osmosis.
But even as Woods’ every move at Royal Liverpool is being documented, it means a lot of Tiger overload this week and that might even be too much for the casual fan.