Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Look for the Return of the Golf Gear News Podcast

Back in August, 2007 I announced that my podcast Golf Gear News was going on hiatus. At the time I didn't know how long I would be off the airwaves (or is that podwaves), but I always intended to find my way back behind the microphone. It has been just over six months and I've missed it.

Well, I just wanted to updated everyone that I'm in the process of putting Golf Gear News back on sometimes in February with a new format, new advertisers, and a much larger listenership. Once the deal is signed you will see our name all over and hopefully you will tune in again.

Stay tuned!

Bruce Stasch
Golf Gear News

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Saturday, January 05, 2008

Snipe All You Want but Tiger Runs the PGA

The start of every PGA Tour season finds Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson missing from the ranks. Even V.J. Singh thinks they should have moved the tournament back at least a week to give the top dogs more time off. Some players like Jeff Ogilvie and Stephen Ames are complaining that the commissioner of the PGA, Tim Finchem is missing in action too. These players are complaining that it shows the lack of commitment to the Tour by the commissioner. Jeff & Stephen, nobody cares.

I’d love to see the top players at every tournament. The sponsors like it, the crowds thrive on it and the television networks count on it, but it will rarely happen to start the season. Top players like Tiger and Phil are brands in and of themselves. They aren’t beholden to the Tour. They will show up when the want to.

Tiger and Phil run the PGA and give the marching orders. The PGA and tour players need to understand that. Tiger, Incorporated and Phil & Company are the draws that bring in the dollars. They are the moneymakers for the PGA. They are multi-million dollars corporations and the PGA benefits from their largess. If Tiger said that he wanted to start The Tiger Tour and would commit to playing every tournament; goodbye PGA.

Let’s use tennis as an example. When Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe were playing, tennis was hot. Everyone wanted to see a Connors-McEnroe match-up. Even ladies tennis was interesting to watch when Martina, Chissy and Billy Jean King were playing.

Although Phil Sampras is considered one of the greatest tennis players in the history of the game, nobody seems to care other than hardcore tennis fans. He doesn’t capture the imagination of fans and sponsors like Tiger does. An interview with Sampras is like getting your wisdom teeth pulled and just as painful. He doesn’t make for good media fodder.

No so with Phil or Tiger. They are the game of golf today. Think Oprah and her book club. She makes best sellers out of books just by talking about them. Tiger sells cars, watches and golf clubs just by lending his name to the brand. The PGA needs to understand that they don’t make the rules anymore, the star players do.

Tim Finchem gets overpaid and has nothing to do with the Tour’s popularity. His no-show at the Mercedes-Benz Championships to start the year is a non-event. The Tour needs to realize where its bread is butter and it ain’t by Commissioner Finchem.

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