Golf fans are a lot like soccer fans in some ways. They don’t necessarily appreciate it when non-golf people come in to cover their sport and mess with the intricacies of a golf telecast. So as you could imagine, there was quite the uproar and a mixture of befuddlement when the official US Open Twitter account announced that Skip Bayless and Shannon Sharpe of FS1’s debate show Undisputed would be “exclusively” revealing the tee times for next week’s US Open.
Given Fox has the rights to the tournament and hasn’t exactly had a smooth relationship with golf fans, it’s another puzzling decision to put the Fox brand above anything else.
— U.S. Open (USGA) (@usopengolf) June 8, 2017
What’s next, Bayless and Sharpe walking up the fairway together debating whether or not Rory McIlroy has the clutch gene? Besides that, is there anything more pointless than revealing when people are teeing off? Only the most hardcore golf fans would actually tune in to something like this. The rest can just Google it at any time. And the people who are actually fans of this kind of television (first of all, I’m sorry for you) will likely be equally as confused as to why Bayless is taking a break from bashing LeBron James to tell us the exciting news of when Jason Day will be teeing off on Thursday and why the morning tee times are advantageous because of the course and weather conditions.
As you can imagine, the reaction ranged from complete befuddlement to people saying they would cancel their USGA membership.
is this a joke?
— Matthew Lafond (@LaDude41) June 8, 2017
I think I'll cancel my USGA membership.
— Dee Patel (@dipskp) June 8, 2017
This ratio is always a sign that something has gone wrong. Not good. pic.twitter.com/ncbR315a1S
— Brendan Porath (@BrendanPorath) June 8, 2017
SHANNON: Rory McIlroy is with Sergio Garcia and Dustin Johnson.
SKIP: Rory will never be better than Tiger, who was never as good as Jack.
— Adam Sarson (@Adam_Sarson) June 8, 2017
What, you couldn't get the dogs of #PawPatrol to announce this? They have greater talent and more viewers.
— McCookMadnessMinion (@mccook2002) June 8, 2017
Of all the people in the entire world?! Please for the love of god. I will do whatever it takes just to have anybody else. #godsaveus
— Ollie Dartz (@Dirty_head59) June 8, 2017
I am embarrassed for the US Open. This is the worst thing I'll never watch.
— J Kroll (@JK_roll) June 8, 2017
Do you know how many times the show Undisputed has talked about golf? Twice. Just twice. Never about actual golf, just about Tiger Woods’ drama. It’s not exactly in the wheelhouse of FS1’s collection of debate shows and it’s nothing more than a brazen cross-promotional ploy that makes nobody happy.
To some extent, you can understand the idea here. ESPN has been masters of the “echo chamber” for many years and the US Open is one of FS1’s big events so Fox and the USGA are going to do what they can to promote it in whatever ways they can. But when it’s so far outside the norm, and when golf is such foreign territory for a show like Undisputed, it’s pretty easy to see through this for what it is. Next maybe Bayless and Sharpe will furiously debate this weekend’s NASCAR race at Pocono.
Undisputed did, as promised, announce the U.S. Open tee times. They just made fans wait a little bit first.
I just had undisputed on for 2 1/2 hours to get ready for tee times and they announced one threesome in the final 3 minutes of the show.
— Josh Berhow (@Josh_Berhow) June 8, 2017