Consider this a relevant bit of good news for those who enjoy watching golf on television: The ol' remote control isn't going to have to do much searching for the PGA Tour event for the next 10 years. The tour's television schedule on NBC and CBS is going to more or less remain as familiar as it is right now.
The relative status quo in programming and the comfort in the relationship between the PGA Tour and the networks that broadcast its product are the primary conclusions drawn from today's announcement by PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem that broadcast agreements with NBC and CBS have been reached that lock up the tour's network television rights through 2021.
Finchem, who made the announcement at the Deutsche Bank championship in Norton while joined on a conference call by CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus and NBC Sports Group chairman Mark Lazarus, revealed that the tour has reached new nine-year deals with the two networks that will begin at the end of the current agreements in 2012.
The new deals will run through the 2021 season, which is also the end of the tour's cable rights deal with the Golf Channel (which falls under the NBC Sports Group umbrella). That deal began in 2007 and runs for 15 years.
"Over the last five years, the quality of our television partners, CBS, NBC and the Golf Channel, and their performance both in the quality of the product and their performance in the marketplace has been a home run for our players, our tournaments, our sponsors and our charities," Finchem said. "So we are absolutely delighted to announce these new long-term agreements."
Under the terms of the extension, CBS will continue to air an average of 20 tournaments with more than 130 hours of live weekend coverage per year. Events tha will air on CBS include the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational, the Wyndham Championships, and The Barclays.
"As we have for more than 50 years, we value our partnership with the PGA Tour and have tremendous confidence that the Tour is well-positioned for continued growth and success," McManus said.
NBC, as it does currently, will televise approximately 10 events each season among its projected 75 hours of live coverage, including the Deutsche Bank Championship, the BMW Championship, and the Tour Championship.
Two World Golf Championship events -- the Cadillac Championship and the Accenture Match Play Championship -- will also air on NBC. The Golf Channel, meanwhile, will air all four rounds for the season first three tournaments while also providing early-round coverage of tournaments that will have its final two rounds air on CBS and NBC on the weekends.