Fox has carried three U.S. Opens and has gotten only two rounds of Tiger Woods, an 80 and a 76 at Chambers Bay in 2015 that marked a 36-hole worst for Woods’ career to that point and an early exit from the tournament.
Woods did not participate in 2016 or 2017. He is scheduled to play this week at Shinnecock Hills.
“I would imagine [former Fox executive] Chase Carey or anybody that signed the deal with the USGA [in 2013] still had Tiger on the mind when the deal was consummated,” host Joe Buck said. “Now we get him. Now we get at least the person that kind of resembles Tiger.
“When we had him at Chambers we were all just figuring it out for ourselves and all of a sudden poof, he was gone. All I remember is him topping a 3-wood on Friday and then he was gone.
“So now we’ve got a guy who is a hell of a lot more competitive, and if he can string four great days together, which he really entirely hasn’t been able to do, then we’ll have a great week. It’s almost like if you get Tiger and Phil [Mickelson], for that matter, and they’re competitive all four days, I think you really have to work to screw it up.
“I’d like to think that we’re prepared and equipped to cover that now . . . We’ll try to do it justice.”
Said Fox producer Mark Loomis, “It’s always cool when Tiger can compete. We’ve had this since 2015 and he played at Chambers and we haven’t had him since, so we love having him there. The fact he’s playing well is even that much better.
“No matter what, when Tiger shows up he’s the person that people are talking about the most, so he’s certainly somebody that we’ll be focused on closely.”