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USDGC on Cable TV
Big-time disc golf events like the USDGC appearing on television is no longer a fantasy.
The 15th USDGC will be the last of four disc golf tournaments rebroadcasted on cable and satellite television this year through efforts of Disc Golf Planet along with the PDGA, and the Beach Sports Network (BSN).
In January, the PDGA announced it had partnered for the year with BSN members, the EVP Tour (pro-am beach volleyball) and the UWP-IJSBA (pro-am watercross), who had already established broadcast television access through BSN for two years.
Twenty 30 minute shows (4 of them disc golf) resulted – starting with the Memorial Championship, which aired in May. It was followed by the Beaver State Fling showed in August, and the Pro World Championships aired in early September. Plans are for the USDGC to be aired in late October, says Dr. John Duesler, who now steers the BSN along with Disc Golf Planet.
In addition to the television access, 2013 marks Disc Golf Planet’s fourth year of live Internet broadcasting, which began at the USDGC.
Duesler says this year’s live coverage will be more about story telling than anything else. And, with Paul McBeth chasing his major sweep and Will Schusterick looking for his third US Championship, Disc Golf Planet will have plenty of material.
“Paul and Will. It’s like two race horses down the stretch,” said Duesler.
As always Disc Golf Planet will have multi-camera coverage as well as their on-air team that includes Crazy John Brooks, David Greenwell, Rebecca Duffy and others. Disc Golf Planet’s fly-over footage of Winthrop Gold will also be available from last year.
Over its four years, Disc Golf Planet has been known for its extensive tournament coverage. At the Pro World Championships, Disc Golf Planet showed more than 30 hours of live coverage this year, Duesler said.
For the television shows, Disc Golf Planet has to squeeze all of that tournament action into only 30 minutes, even shorter when you figure in commercials and other promo time.
“When we produce these shows we really have to be hyper-disciplined to show the whole story in a short amount of time,” said Duesler.
Television coverage has long been the promised-land for disc golf’s mainstream acceptance. Though tournament highlights haven’t made it to ESPN’s SportsCenter yet, disc golf has still found a way on TV.
It’s thanks to a bigger need for specialized content that many big pay-for TV companies use through their regional sports networks.
“Essentially what we do is provide the regional networks with content,” said Duesler, former PDGAmarketing director.
The disc golf shows are distributed to 21 regional sports networks and 3 satellite cable networks with a reach of more the 82 million households, according to Duesler.
Not all 82 million are watching disc golf, but Duesler says if they can get just one percent of that, than they’re doing pretty good.
“It’s a major step forward for disc golf and it’s basically happening right now,” said Duesler.
This year’s partnership with the EVP Tour and the UWP was mainly to test the waters and next year’s arrangement is currently being discussed, said Duesler.
The EVP and UWP eventually want to crack into live Internet broadcasting, which is what attracted them to the PDGA and its relationship with Disc Golf Planet.
He says TV access introduces non disc golfers to the sport and its greatest players. But, it also legitimizes the sport and the industry that supports it. Eventually other industries and corporations will be attracted, he said.
So look for Beach Sports Network programs from your local cable or satellite TV provider. Disc Golf Planet will be sure to catch you up on all of the drama if you can’t make it to Rock Hill, S.C. for the Championship this year.
For Disc Golf Planet’s live coverage of the USDGC go here: http://www.discgolfplanet.tv