6 Current Golfers We'd Most Like to See as Analysts
The golf analyst has one of the key roles of any broadcast. There's nothing he can't talk about when telling the audience what is happening in a particular tournament.
A good analyst will tell you what's going through a competitor's mind as he prepares for a shot, analyze the stance and swing, provide insight into the golfer's strengths, weaknesses and personality, and also provide quick lessons for the amateur golfer watching the broadcast.
It's not easy and it can't be forced. Tiger Woods may be the best golfer in the world when he's on his game, but if he does not like talking for four hours or longer and talking about his potential competitors, he won't do a good job on the air.
The golf audience wants an analyst with a solid track record. He doesn't have to be a future Hall of Famer, but he has to have been to the winner's circle a few times in his career.
The analyst has to enjoy language and feel comfortable in front of the camera. Here's a look at six current golfers who will make great television analysts.
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images
Phil Mickelson is an unabashed superstar.
He is a brilliant shotmaker and perhaps the second-best American player on the tour. Under most cases, superstars usually don't make great analysts, but Mickelson is different. There's nothing about the game that he doesn't know and no situation that he has failed to face himself.
He is a golfer who has both succeeded and failed under pressure. That will endear him to the viewer. Mickelson may be privileged, but he is a man of sympathy and empathy (source: Golf Digest).
He looks reporters in the eye when he is asked questions, and he will look straight at the camera without equivocation.
He will not have to look for a job when his playing days are over, but he would be a sensational analyst if he chooses to go in that direction.
Golf fans want an analyst they can relate to.
The game tends to appeal to the well-to-do and the moneyed; however when a down-home player comes up from the ranks and asserts himself it's a good story.
That's the case with Watson, who emerged as the 2012 Masters Champion.
One of the things that allows Watson to appeal to the "everyman" is his own interest in auto racing and the fact that he never had a golf lesson. "I don't listen to anybody," Watson told Augusta.com. "I'm too hard headed."
That's right, ol' Bubba just picked up the sticks and started hammering away, just like many of the viewers.
He may not be as technically well-schooled as some of the other potential analysts, but he's a regular guys whom golf fans will enjoy listening to on a week-in, week-out basis.
Kuchar is a very solid golfer but he doesn't rank with the elite players in the game.
That's what separates Kuchar from the other potential analysts. He explains why it's good to control your feelings sometimes on the course and why it's even better to let loose with emotion at other times.
Kuchar's success has come from hard work and practice. He takes nothing for granted. He will point out when he has made a great shot and why and then will talk just as freely about his mistakes and what he did wrong.
Kuchar's knowledge of the game and the ability to convey that information should make him a sought-after analyst.
Zach Johnson grew up as a Midwestern farm boy who loved sports.
He loved all sports and some of them a lot more than golf. He was good at all of them and as his skill at golf grew, he realized he had a chance to make something of himself with the sport.
Johnson earned a golf scholarship at Drake University and figured that he could use the sport to help him earn a degree in business. Playing golf on the pro tour? That was a dream that probably wasn't about to come true (source: ESPN.com).
But Johnson kept working at his game and he eventually became the 2007 Masters champion. Despite his success, he has never lost his farm-boy persona and his likability. He will be an excellent analyst that relates to most viewers.
Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images
Jim Furyk is one of the most consistent and well-liked golfers on the tour.
He also realizes that there's more than one way to get through a round of 18 holes.
Furyk is not known for his classic swing. As a matter of fact, the textbooks say he does things the wrong way. In the picture above, look at his flying right elbow. Not exactly the way Hank Haney teaches it.
However, that's what would make Furyk one of the best analysts. He doesn't have a perfect swing, but he gets results. That's just what the viewers want. You get the feeling that Furyk could help many golfer cut a stroke or two from their scorecard. He loves teaching the game as well (source: Golf.com).
He's not perfect, but he's one of the best on the tour. A great listen and a great guy.
Hunter Martin/Getty Images
Canadian Mike Weir is not the kind of golfer who will bomb the ball 320-yards plus down the center of the fairway on the par-4 and par-5 holes.
He is a smaller man who has become a high-level golfer because he's a technician with a well-honed swing.
He won the 2003 Masters because he's got the courage to make all the shots when the money is on the table. He excels at the short game.
He understands what it takes to excel even if you are 5'9" and 155 pounds. Most viewers aren't big and strong and may have to overcome those shortcomings with skill. Weir is straightforward and could tell viewers how to do it and also explain what's going on in the minds of the top pros.