Monday, August 9, 2010

Sports Coverage -- It's all About Celebrity Gossip Now

We posted a blog about Tiger Woods' downfall this weekend. It was commentary about Tiger Woods and his downfall not intended to be coverage of the Bridgestone Invitational. Still, are we guilty of getting into the cult of personalities?  Probably so.

What was more alarming was this evening's coverage on ESPN SportsCenter. While giving the PGA event top level coverage, the coverage was devoted almost exclusively to Tiger Woods' agony including a very broken looking Woods asked to account for his failings at the end of his play. That one of his shots hit a spectator and Woods responded by autographing one of his gloves and giving the fan the ball in play along with some splish-splashes, oops, how'd that get there shots, and lots of camera on a wincing, grimacing golfer continued to drive the story. The next big story line was devoted to Phil Mickelson, #2 in waiting, who likewise had a miserable day.

So didn't someone win the tournament? Did he or did he not face some competition in the back nine. It would be hard to know watching the Nation's premier sportscast. For the record, Hunter Mahan finished #1, 12 shots under par, a $1.4 million pay day. Ryan Palmer finished second, -10, taking home $840,000. How strange it is the fellow who finished tied for next to last in 78th place got all the attention. For his efforts, Tiger Woods took home $35,500, twenty strokes over par.

Following this precedent, should not ESPN spend most of Baseball Tonight's coverage following the Pittsburgh Pirates?

Next week, the tour moves on to the 4th major, the PGA. Could this please be about the competition for the lead and not the on-going soap opera about the former champ in disgrace?  Are we that sadistic we like seeing someone so miserable? 

Note to ESPN, we understand Tiger's mighty roar has been reduced to scared kitten's "mew," but there are dozens of other golfers whose story deserves to be told. Note to TNT and CBS, cover the golf not the soap opera. Let the cameras take us to Whistling Straits in Haven, Wisconsin for GOLF!!!

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