Nick Faldo and Jim Nantz.

Big changes are coming to CBS’ golf coverage. Nick Faldo, CBS’ lead golf analyst since 2006, will be leaving following the conclusion of their golf broadcasting season on Aug. 7 at the Wyndham Championship. Trevor Immelman, who’s been working with CBS since 2019, will replace Faldo (seen at left above with Jim Nantz this February) as their lead analyst beginning in 2023. Here are some quotes on that from CBS’ release:

“Sir Nick has had a remarkable career on Network television for nearly 20 years and is one of the most accomplished commentators to ever sit in the 18th tower,” said Sean McManus, Chairman, CBS Sports. “Nick brought the same passion and dedication that propelled him to the world’s number one golfer to our broadcasts. He combined his profound knowledge of golf with his wit and charm, enlightening viewers and elevating our coverage. We thank him for his outstanding contributions and dedication to CBS Sports. While his voice will be missed on-air, we wish him the best as he continues to positively impact the game of golf around the world.”

“We are thrilled to name Trevor as the lead analyst for golf on CBS,” continued McManus. “He brings the credentials and experience as a Major Champion, along with a unique perspective and knowledge of today’s stars, having recently competed alongside them. Trevor has developed terrific chemistry and relationships with our entire team, and we look forward to him sharing his insights, as he informs and entertains viewers for many years to come.”

…“After an incredible run, having the privilege of being the lead analyst for CBS for 16 seasons, I made the difficult decision earlier this year to step down from the 18th after this season,” said Faldo. “I had the second best and highly coveted seat in golf, sitting next to Jim Nantz. I am honored and humbled to have worked alongside this outstanding announce team, as well as the producers, directors, and crew members behind the scenes who make it all happen.  I am excited for Trevor; he will be excellent in this role and the team is incredibly well positioned for the future.  As I step away from broadcasting, I look forward to exploring new opportunities and partnerships, focusing on growing the game of golf through the Faldo Series, as well as expanding the reach and growth of Faldo Designs.”

“I am truly honored to be added to the distinguished list of lead analysts who have come before me as part of CBS Sports’ storied golf history,” said Immelman. “I have had the tremendous fortune of being mentored twice in my career by Sir Nick, first as a player and now as a broadcaster, I am forever grateful. Sitting in the 18th tower next to Jim Nantz, surrounded by the best broadcast team in golf, is a dream job. I can’t wait for next season when my dream becomes a reality.”

Faldo also put out a statement on Twitter:

That statement has Faldo saying “I am announcing my retirement from full-time broadcasting for CBS and the Golf Channel” and referencing “leaving a full schedule of broadcasting.” That could still see him calling some events, with him referencing “other opportunities and partnerships,” and that’s led to some speculation that he might wind up joining at least some LIV Golf broadcasts. But those unspecified opportunities and partnerships could also be about other broadcasts, or other business ventures outside broadcasting.

CBS’ release notes that Immelman has signed a new multi-year with the network, and that his first tournament as lead analyst will be the Farmers’ Insurance Open next year. This also fits with some other changes on CBS’ golf coverage over the past few years, with long-time producer Lance Barrow leaving after the 2020 Masters and Sellers Shy stepping into that role. But this does seem to have come at Faldo’s instigation, with him mentioning telling CBS’ McManus of his desire to leave after this contract in his statement, and McManus telling John Ourand of Sports Business Journal that he’d expected that January meeting with Faldo to be about a new contract. And 2006-2022 is a long run as a lead analyst, so it makes sense that Faldo might want to take more time for himself and for his other business ventures.

The 64-year-old Faldo won six majors during his playing career, winning the Masters three times and the Open Championship three times. He picked up nine PGA Tour and 30 European Tour victories overall, with that latter number being the fifth-highest ever. Immelman is also a Masters champion, winning that event in 2008, and he’s been doing a lot of broadcasting work over the past few years with both CBS and Golf Channel. We’ll see how he does sliding into Faldo’s seat as lead analyst.

[Paramount Press Express, Sports Business Journal]

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously worked at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.