No Berman For ESPN's Coverage Of The Masters

Friday, March 21, 2008

Just amazing news today from the NY Post. Last year's attempt at injecting Chris Berman into ESPN's coverage of Golf is a one and done. He won't be around this April....

Berman will have nothing to do with this year's Masters telecasts, no presence whatsoever. There's not even a pro-am for ESPN to show him clowning in. Mike Tirico will be the only ESPN person seen through the network's Thursday and Friday, 4-7 p.m. window. And Tirico is assigned to conduct interviews from Butler Cabin.

The rest of ESPN's telecasts will be in the hands of CBS and CBS personnel. Berman won't even be a member of ESPN's three-man, on-site "SportsCenter" team.
While this is great news for Golf fans, I'm going to agree with Post writer Phil Mushnick when he says that this, "doesn't rhyme with ESPN's usual big-game scheme." It seems to be yet another small step towards substance over style and if they keep going this way Chris Berman isn't going to have anything left to do but the Homerun Derby.

It has to be tough to sit down your highest paid individual, and I'd be hard pressed to think of a better decision ESPN has made in recent years. If anyone remembers last year's coverage of the U.S. Open they remember that the first two days of the Tournament was a joke. Berman is incapable of not acting like his nicknaming self and him not being involved this year is a blessing.

Merry Chriss-Miss Golf Fans (NY Post)

(Thanks to JP for the link)

11 Comments:

"It seems to be yet another small step towards substance over style and if they keep going this way..."

Easy there, AA. I'm all for change as much as the next guy, but this is 100% from Augusta. They pulled all commercials from the broadcast a few years ago because of that controversy over women's rights.

As soon as they signed up for this, I was curious who Augusta was going to say who could and couldn't be there -- thanks for passing this along.

/qtvhar

Mar 21, 2008, 10:36:00 AM  

AWESOME

Fred Morlan said...
Mar 21, 2008, 11:02:00 AM  

What did Berman do last year at the Masters? USA had broadcast rights. ESPN just got them this year. Maybe you're thinking of the U.S. Open, which Berman has been polluting the first two rounds as the lead announcer the past five years or so?

MileHigh said...
Mar 21, 2008, 11:22:00 AM  

I think Milehigh is right about the US Open. Perhaps AA is thinking of Sportscenter coverage of the Masters. Whichever, this is still welcome news.

Anonymous said...
Mar 21, 2008, 11:27:00 AM  

This is wonderful news!!! Nothing is more cringe-inducing than listening to the first couple rounds of the US Open on ESPN and hearing the forced chuckles of Roger Maltbie after a stupid line from Berman. You just know the regular golf announcers at ESPN were always dumbfounded by the network dragging out Berman for a sport he obviously know little about.

Anonymous said...
Mar 21, 2008, 11:28:00 AM  

What, there will be no mention of Tiger blasting a drive not far down the fairway but "all the way to Athens or Columbia, SC!"? Then how will we know that there have been some long drives? For shame, WWL and Augusta National, for shame.

doneycat said...
Mar 21, 2008, 11:44:00 AM  

Yes yes....meant the Open. Thanks. This is the first year of Masters coverage for ESPN and Tirico is a good choice (although Van Pelt would have been better).

Mar 21, 2008, 11:47:00 AM  

I wish Berman would officially retire. Or at least only do NFL Sunday Countdown. It's sad seeing someone I grew up enjoying slide into senility. He's trying to use the same gags he did 20 years ago, that I thought were funny, because I was 12.

I want him to retire so I can remember him fondly. another year or two and my memories will be overshadowed.

philip said...
Mar 21, 2008, 12:40:00 PM  

Can you imagine the backroom turmoil?

LOL, I bet Berman cried.

Wanna know how I feel about it?

I just gotta laugh...

hollywood wags said...
Mar 21, 2008, 12:52:00 PM  

Everyone knows Augusta selects the announcers for the broadcast. If ESPN had its way, it would have 25 announcers, Sports Reporters, First Take, every Sportscenter for a week, PTI (or at least Wilbon), and Around the Horn there.

Anonymous said...
Mar 21, 2008, 6:26:00 PM  

This is totally Augusta National's call, and it's a good one. Their leaders lay down the law when it comes to Masters tv presentation. It got McCord banned a few years back ("bikini-wax greens"), and even got the venerable Jack Whitaker tossed (called the crowd a "mob"). Berman would have been a ticking time bomb, and Augusta wanted no part of him.

Anonymous said...
Mar 25, 2008, 11:13:00 PM  

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