“Break a leg” is an idiom in theatre used to wish a performer “good luck” in an ironic way.
I’ll get t0 the TV coverage in a minute… The USGA’s grand experiment at Chambers Bay was a grand “expletive”. I understand they wanted to think outside the box, but you only get one chance to make a first impression and the Robert Trent Jones, Jr designed Chambers Bay was a colossal failure. It was a testament to how out of touch RTJ, Jr is with the game of golf. I can’t believe anyone would ever pay this nut job to build a golf course for them. I have been saying this for 30 years. Ever since I first played the RTJ, Jr Trail course Magnolia Trace in Mobile, Alabama. While scenically beautiful, this series of ill conceived tragedies are the most unreasonable and treacherously hard courses for the average golfer I could imagine… Until I saw the ridiculousness this weekend. Maybe Mr. Jones’ design imagination would be better suited for the next “Polar Golf” video game.
Now, what the heck was Fox Spoofs thinking?! They spent around $100 million for the rights to televise the Championship which was more than twice the previous contract and then overpaid a very poor panel of analyst and commentators in order to put their best foot forward their first year? Well that first step was a doozy because they fell and broke their leg! Johnny Miller said when he originally found out that NBC would not cover the U S Open, “I feel bad for the USGA in a way that money was more important than basically a good golf crew.” An understated prophecy that statement was.
I have tons of respect for Joe Buck and Greg Norman. They are two of my favorites in their fields of expertise. But hosting a golf telecast is not one of them! Between the amount of “on air” silence while they searched for something remotely pertaining to what the viewers were seeing, to the overuse and description of “Fescue”, to the constant insincere positive spin about the course and conditions, I could hardly watch… literally! Between that and the dull brown gold color of the course I could hardly see the ball! Thank goodness they used Shot Tracker so much!! Also I want to know what idiot put Holly Saunders in charge of the interviews?! Didn’t they see the 2013 RE/MAX World Long Drive Championship? While wearing highly inappropriate attire, she asked horribly bad questions like the one she asked Jordan Spieth about the possibility on playing on Monday… “Did you pack a fifth outfit?” Why not go with something about the next major or his thoughts on Dustin Johnson’s three putt to lose? She had an earpiece in! Someone could have come up with an intelligent inquiry!
But in the end the drama on the golf course out shined all the other stuff and this United States Open Championship will go down as one of the greatest of all time… Even NBC/Golf Channel will agree with that.
What could have been, though…