A War of Timing?
By Torleif Sorenson on 8/15/13

Some golf fans and people in the world of sports media are in a bit of a lather because the USGA announced their new broadcast contract with Fox Sports on the eve of the PGA Championship at Oak Hill. Reaction about the timing of the announcement has been mixed, at best.

But in an interview with SiriusXM PGA Tour Radio host Matt Adams, PGA of America president Ted Bishop said that the announcement did not detract from the PGA Championship. The excellent sports media blogger Ed Sherman helpfully provided a transcript of the interview, which included this exchange:
Bishop:"There was nothing from outside the PGA Championship that happened last week that disrupted what we felt like was an important week in major golf. We survived something there in the middle of the week that had no impact on our championship whatsoever and we were proud of everything that happened at Oak Hill."

Adams: "You're talking about the USGA's announcement of the television rights going to Fox?"

Bishop: "Yeah, I think that's what I was probably referring to. This is the week of the U.S. Amateur, right? ...Let me just say this: So this being the week of the U.S. Amateur, there's no way the PGA of America would make an announcement on where a future Ryder Cup and PGA Championship site [would be] that would be as big as Bethpage, we wouldn't want to be a distraction to any of our allied associations."
But on Monday, the opening day of the U.S. Amateur Championship, one of the USGA's highest-profile national championships, reports surfaced that the PGA of America would bring the 2019 PGA Championship and the 2024 Ryder Cup Matches to the famous Black Course at Bethpage State Park in Farmingdale, New York.

Adams followed up with this question:
Adams: "Did you deliberately allow the information on New York to come out this week in the middle of the U.S. Amateur as a result?"

Bishop: "No! Are you kidding? I mean, first of all, as I said there is no announcement today. That article is strictly, at this point in time, total rumor. No, and I'm saying this in the right vein, I'm absolutely insulted that anybody would think that. Because, obviously, today in New York is all about our champion, Jason Dufner, and we cannot be responsible [for] or control what the media writes."

Adams: "Is there an unspoken rule among golf governing bodies that when they have an event going on that is so important that you kind of leave it alone?"

Bishop: "Well, obviously there's not. [laughs] There's not at least within the circles of one of golf's governing bodies. But I don't think that anybody would have made that announcement during the Masters. I don't think the USGA would have made that announcement during the Open Championship, and I can unequivocally tell you that the PGA of America would not make any kind of a major announcement that would upstage any one of our major championship partners, nor the PGA Tour. It's just not the right way to do things."

Adams: "Why did it happen then? Is there some bad blood still festering?"

Bishop: "You know what, there's none on our end. You'd have to talk to somebody in Far Hills [USGA headquarters] about that."
Of course, the PGA of America is a large-enough organization with a large-enough national leadership body that one of Bishop's understudies certainly could (and probably did) have enough clout to leak the information to a favored golf writer someplace — such as GolfWeek — without any fear of repercussion or whistle-blowing.

And you have to admit this: The leaked story about Bethpage Black distracted most golf media outlets from focusing on the U.S. Amateur Championship this week. But in this writer's humble opinion, the 13th Solheim Cup that begins tomorrow at Colorado Golf Club is the most compelling golf event this week.

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Image via Flickr, Keith Allison

[ comments ]
legitimatebeef says:
Wow, what a scumbag. Coincidentally, this Ted Bishop was named "Creep of the week" at some site called legitimategolf.com.
Wes11point5 says:
Duke of Hazards says:
Sounds like a bunch of 15yo girls upstaging each other at the school dance. 'Oh no she di'int!'
bkuehn1952 says:
"Yeah, I think that's what I was probably referring to"

Weasel words spoken by a weasel.
jasonfish11 says:
Duke hit it on the head. Nothing to see here but some high school girls...

Maybe that wasn't the right thing to post on the interweb
[ post comment ]
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