Stop moaning about the coverage before it's even began and embrace the fact that we've got four days of a golf major live on free to air TV
Why The BBC USPGA Coverage Will Be Great
The BBC kick-starts its USPGA Championship coverage from Quail Hollow today as it prepares to show all four days of a golf major live for the first time since the 2015 Open at St Andrews.
The BBC’s deal came out of the blue during Open week and took many by surprise, not least Sky who had lost the season’s final major just days after launching a dedicated golf channel.
Related: BBC USPGA Championship TV Times
However, the reception to live major golf on free-to-air TV hasn’t gone down as well as I would have thought.
I was over the moon, but it seems like the whole of the UK are moaning before it’s even began.
I am a Sky subscriber and yes, I think their coverage is incredible, state of the art and deserving of awards – like the BAFTA they received for last year’s Open coverage at Troon.
Related: Past USPGA Champions Gallery
But I’ve grown up with Ken Brown, Peter Alliss and Maureen Madill on the BBC, and it’s great to be able to see and hear them back broadcasting live major championship golf to the nation.
We’ve seen comments on our Facebook and Twitter pages like ‘the BBC don’t care about golf’, ‘they care more about athletics’ etc…But if they didn’t care about golf, why would they be back in the live golf game?
Everyone had begun to accept the fact that the BBC were no longer interested in our great sport, but this latest deal shows that most certainly isn’t the case.
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While the coverage isn’t exactly how we’d like it to be – it’s on BBC iPlayer, Red Button and the BBC Sport website for the most part – it’s not going to be like that every year.
Remember, we live in a digital age where most people have smart TVs, laptops, ipads etc, so it’s unlikely you’ll not be able to tune in.
It should be noted that the iPlayer and BBC Sport website feeds will be in HD.
And if you can’t be in front of a screen then you can hear it on BBC Radio 5 Live with Iain Carter, who is without doubt one of sport’s best broadcasters.
After the BBC broadcasted the final two days of the Masters this year, which culminated in an epic back nine battle between Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose, they must have been reminded of just how much value golf gives to both fans and broadcasters.
With golf participation figures rising this year, the next four days can only add to that momentum and bring even more people to the game.
This is a long-term investment and that’s something we should all be seriously excited about.
Next year the USPGA Championship from Bellerive CC won’t be clashing with the World Athletics Championship, so the golf will be on the main channel in its entirety.
And anyway, we watch the golf for what happens on the course, and we’re bound to get just as much enjoyment from the BBC’s coverage as we would get from Sky’s.
Plus, no adverts and surely a few Ken on the Course clips!
So stop moaning, and sit back, load up the coverage in whatever 21st century way you choose and enjoy the action.
Are you excited by the BBC’s UGPGA coverage or do you wish Sky still had it? Join in the conversation on the Golf Monthly Facebook and Twitter pages.