Woods To Be In Middle of PGA.com Stream
When big-time sports appear live online, it's often in simulcasts of the TV coverage or to offer supplements to TV such as offbeat camera angles - but they don't focus on a big event's epicenter.
But if CBS - whose PGA Tour final-round ratings for tournaments won by Tiger Woods have spiked more than 100 percent so far this year - gets lucky and gets Woods in contention in this weekend's PGA Championship, viewers will get a rare option: They can go online for coverage, separate from what CBS will air, that will focus solely on Woods.
Or at least Woods and his player group. PGA.com, event organizer PGA of America's Web site, will follow two player groups each day of the tournament. On Thursday and Friday, the site will carry Woods' group as well as another picked by ongoing online voting on PGA.com. On Saturday and Sunday, it joins one group in progress at 11 a.m. ET and another in the afternoon - presumably the one with Woods.
Meaning that PGA.com, managed by TNT, which carries 18 live TV hours of weekday and weekend morning play, will likely end up showing Woods live online even as he's playing the event's final holes on CBS.
So far, live online event coverage has drawn tiny audiences compared with TV, with research suggesting viewers would prefer staring at their TV sets - especially big-screens - rather than at their computer if given a choice.
But it's difficult to know how much, if at all, online viewing could cut into TV audiences given that the sports world's prime cuts - like Woods standing over a putt to win a major - rarely air online and on-air simultaneously. Turner Sports executive vice president Lenny Daniels suggests the PGA.com coverage will be "additive" rather than "compete" with CBS.
On tap:@ ESPN has pretty much locked up TV games for U.S. soccer teams. But not Wednesday: NBC-owned Telemundo, which has Spanish and English-language rights to Mexico's soccer team, will air the U.S.-Mexico (4 p.m. ET) World Cup qualifier.
Telemundo, in about 59 million TV households, will carry Spanish-language coverage. But channel viewers can get the English call by using "secondary audio programming" on their sets. English coverage is on spinoff channel Mun2, normally in 30 million households and expanding to 67 million as cable operators get the channel free for the day. ESPN, with reporting from the Mexico City site, has a live pregame show - the first time it has had one for a soccer game it didn't air.