The World Series of Golf and the Future of Poker on TV

by , May 14, 2008 | 7:23 pm

So the WSOG has been a really cool event … it grew this year from 60 players to 80 players, probably only 30 of whom were poker players. I hope it continues to grow to the point that poker has only a minor connection to it … because when they can get the Charles Barkleys and Michael Jordans competing in it, then I gotta think it would be a huge TVmajig. (Currently it will be airing on CBS as a time-buy, paid for primarily by Full Tilt.)

Here’s an article about the WSOG in USA Today. What I find most fascinating are the comments it has gotten — comments not by staunchly pro- or anti-poker people … but by run-o-the-mill Americans who have a slight interest in reading a not-so-prominent article about a quirky variant of golf. They give a lot of insight into the challenges that poker faces in the future (on TV and otherwise):

fredlander wrote: 3d 6h ago
These two non sports go hand in hand. I would call this a perfect combination for fat, out of shape people who can’t play a real sport. Throw in race car driving which is great entertainment for brain dead people and you have the perfect trifecta for all the millions of fat, out of shape americans. Bon appetite!

Indeedy. And the success of Nascar and Jeffrey Pollack’s connection to it give hope. I actually thought bass fishing was going to take off on TV once they introduced the “hook cams” … but apparently it hasn’t yet.

Dave S Texas wrote: 3d 7h ago
Golf and gambling go back to the days when the game was invented. Why network television intends to glorify this bogus ‘golf’ event is beyond my comprehension. I recorded the event last year. After watching about 15 min of it, I deleted it. Bad amatuers playing bad golf. Pathetic.

Hmm … we’ll have to talk later about their plans for next year to include some non-amateur action.

BobLee wrote: 4d 1h ago
Congress should appoint a Senate Sub-Committee to study “poker”. Appoint Henry Waxman to head this one too ….. he frightens children.

You tell’em, Bob. Actually, there’s a bill kinda like that pending.

disgustedpatriot wrote: 4d 1h ago
Poker is not a sport!! It is a vice! Why poker is now on the sporting pages and on ESPN and other networks is beyond me. What is next? Binge drinking contests? Or how about reality prostitution shows? Whoops….forgot, that is already on MTV!!

Yeow, how did they know? Apparently the World Series of Beer Pong is a little ahead of its time. Interestingly enough, Doyle Brunson competed in the WSOG last year but not this year. Yet he did find time to compete in the WSOBP — seen here after pounding (literally) multiple beers:


And who says that doesn’t make for good television drama when in the inaugural event saw Todd Brunson beat his dad:

4 Comments to “The World Series of Golf and the Future of Poker on TV”

  1. Kevin Mathers

    BASS is owned by ESPN, and FLW was able to get Wal-Mart to be their title sponsor. Both tours are also get decent sized crowds for their weigh-in ceremonies (which are quite a spectacle, especially for their major events).

  2. DanM

    We should note for our loyal Texas base that the biggest BASS events go down on Lake Lewisville. And, of course, fishing has many many shows all over the country … an its own network … and its own Fantasy Fishing league.

    Interestingly enough, fishing tournaments were brought to prominence in Texas by groups closely connected to religious entities. To be sure, it is considered a very “Christian” activity.

    And they way they work, you buy in and compete in a “sport” that combines skill and luck, the organizers take a cut, and the winners get paid cash.

    Interesting concept, no?

    They even have kids divisions.

  3. Uncle Ray

    As long as you’re talkin’ fish check this out,CST-SPT-out14.article

    Take particular notice down the page for the “Places and faces” and see who won the Northern Illinois Junior BassMaster tournament in the 8- to 10-year-old age bracket.

    Anyone we know Dan?

  4. DanM

    Go Lizzie Michalski!

    With that said, UR, I don’t think we have any immediate family members in Naperville with fishing skills. But if she keeps winning … heck, we can claim her, right?