It is Masters week at long last and here is ESPN’s coverage plans and announcers for the 2013 staging of the Tournament:
ESPN at the Masters Tournament
One of the great traditions of spring, the Masters Tournament at Augusta (Ga.) National Golf Club will kick off ESPN’s championship golf schedule for 2013. In its sixth year at the Masters, ESPN will air 4.5 hours of live Tournament play daily from the first two rounds, the traditional Par 3 Contest the day preceding the Tournament and four days of action on the ESPN 3D Network. Expansive news, information and analysis will appear on a variety of ESPN platforms in the U.S. and internationally, including television, radio, online and mobile devices.
ESPN and ESPN Deportes will air 4.5 hours of live first and second round action on Thursday, April 11, and Friday, April 12, from 3-7:30 p.m. ET with an edited encore presentation in prime time each night from 8-11 p.m. Live ESPN coverage will also be simulcast on ESPN3 and WatchESPN. The ESPN 3D Network will air three hours of live play from the first two rounds each day starting at 4:30 p.m. as well as live play from the Saturday and Sunday rounds at 4 p.m.
Prior to the live television windows Thursday and Friday, SportsCenter will air updates every 30 minutes beginning at 9 a.m. daily.
Mike Tirico will serve as host of ESPN’s Thursday and Friday telecasts and will conduct player interviews from Augusta National’s Butler Cabin with analyst Curtis Strange. CBS will again produce the telecasts with CBS’ golf announce crew also contributing to the coverage.
SportsCenter at the Masters
ESPN’s flagship news and information program SportsCenter will feature live updates from Augusta National Golf Club throughout the Masters Tournament beginning the afternoon of Monday, April 8.
On the first two days of play, Thursday and Friday, April 11-12, SportsCenter will bring viewers up to date from Augusta every 30 minutes with highlights, scores and interviews until ESPN’s telecast of live play begins at 3 p.m. each day. Included will be Thursday’s traditional ceremonial first tee shot with legendary golfers Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player.
A one-hour SportsCenter at the Masters special will air Wednesday, April 10, at 5 p.m. on ESPN with a preview of the tournament. Host Scott Van Pelt will be joined by analyst Andy North and reporter Tom Rinaldi as well as ESPN.com national columnist Gene Wojciechowski and Rick Reilly, ESPN.com columnist and SportsCenter essayist. The SportsCenter special follows ESPN’s telecast of the Masters Par 3 Tournament from 3-5 p.m.
Several player press conferences will take place on Tuesday, April 9, and SportsCenter will air the news conferences of Rory McIlroy (9:30 a.m.), Tiger Woods (1 p.m.) and Phil Mickelson (2:30 p.m.).
Van Pelt and Mike Tirico will host SportsCenter reports from the Masters with North and Rinaldi and contributions from analysts Curtis Strange and Paul Azinger.
Wojciechowski will present a feature on 14-year-old Tianlang Guan, the youngest golfer ever to qualify for the Masters. The young phenom is shown during preparations in his native China, where Wojciechowski and an ESPN crew spent a week with him, and ESPN spent time with him as he first arrived at Augusta.
Also airing across multiple ESPN programs including SportsCenter will be Tirico’s conversation with Tiger Woods at the recent PGA TOUR event in Orlando.
The Masters on ESPN 3D
ESPN’s television coverage will include 12 hours of programming in 3D on the ESPN 3D network, with three hours daily from all four rounds of Tournament action. Thursday and Friday’s telecasts begin at 4:30 p.m. while the weekend telecasts begin at 4 p.m. Sean McDonough will host ESPN 3D’s telecasts of the first two rounds with analyst Paul Azinger, while Azinger will join host Mike Tirico and analyst Curtis Strange for the weekend rounds.
Masters Par 3 Contest
The fun and family-oriented Masters Par 3 Contest will air Wednesday, April 10, from 3-5 p.m. on ESPN and ESPN3. The Par 3 Contest, which began in 1960, was first televised by ESPN in 2008. On the telecast, Mike Tirico, Andy North and Curtis Strange will be joined by Tom Rinaldi, who will conduct interviews on the putting green.
The Masters on ESPN Deportes
ESPN Deportes, ESPN’s multimedia, Spanish-language sports brand dedicated to providing the widest variety of sports to the U.S. Hispanic sports fan, will have live television coverage of the first and second rounds of the Masters Tournament on Thursday and Friday, April 11-12, from 3-7:30 p.m. Francisco Aleman (analyst), Silvia Bertolaccini (play-by-play) and John Sutcliffe (on-course reporter) will call the action from Augusta National Golf Club.
In addition, ESPNDeportes.com, the No. 1 Spanish-language sports website among Spanish-preferred fans in the U.S., will offer extensive Masters coverage at its golf index page, including:
· Chats with the on-air experts.
· Various feature golf columns leading up to first-round play and post reports daily.
· Previews and analysis, including a hole by hole preview
· Nightly ESPN video wrap by ESPN Deportes’ golf experts on site.
· Daily blogs
· Real-time leaderboards
· Hole-by-hole analysis
· Daily tournament photo galleries and video highlights
· Daily polls
The Masters on Other ESPN Digital Platforms
All Masters programming on ESPN is also available on computers, smartphones, tablets and Xbox via WatchESPN, accessible to fans who receive their video subscription from an affiliate provider including Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, Verizon FiOS TV, Comcast Xfinity TV, Midcontinent Communications, Cablevision, Cox, Charter Communications and AT&T U-verse.
News, reactions and columns from senior golf writers Farrell Evans and Bob Harig, national columnist Gene Wojciechowski and Rick Reilly, columnist and SportsCenter essayist.
“Digital Drive,” an exclusive ESPN.com program hosted by Scott Van Pelt and Andy North, will be produced each night Wednesday-Sunday of Masters week.
Live chat, featuring new “Scribble Live” application, moderated by golf reporter Michael Collins and ESPN The Magazine’s Sarah Turcotte.
A new original digital comedy video with defending Masters champion Bubba Watson and Collins debuts April 4.
Collins will hand out nightly grades for the top 10 players in the world plus other notable names.
“Championship Central” on the ESPN.com/Golf index page focusing on the majors and the Presidents Cup.
ESPN Golf Cast with an easy to use interface with scoring, video and social media elements.
Links to Masters.com incorporating traffic roll-up of live feeds from Amen Corner, Holes 15 and 16 and the Featured Group 1 and Featured Group 2 channels.
Pre-Tournament coverage began in mid-March with the “Road to The Masters” series tracking the latest news and historical reviews of the year’s first major. Included are more than 50 Masters Moments video highlights.
Daily Masters coverage began April 1 with ESPN analyst Andy North ranking his best 10 shots in Masters history by a Masters winner. The video series began with the 10th ranking and will conclude Wednesday, April 10, with the No. 1 shot.
Interactive elements including Best Ball Challenge and Masters conversation pages.
Video clips from ESPN golf analysts Andy North, Curtis Strange and Paul Azinger.
Live scoring from Masters.com.
ESPN’s multi-screen, live event sports network will simulcast ESPN’s telecast of the Masters Par 3 Contest on Wednesday, April 10, from 3-5 p.m. and the first and second rounds of play on Thursday and Friday, April 11-12, from 3-7:30 p.m.
Additional coverage of the Masters on ESPN platforms:
Dan Davis will provide coverage through all four rounds of The Masters for ESPN Radio and ESPNRadio.com. His in-play reports will run during SportsCenter updates twice an hour. Davis will also guest on network talk shows. Additionally, the weekly Ian O’Connor Show (Sundays 7-9 a.m.) will originate from Augusta on April 14.
ESPNRadio.com will highlight player interviews, course analysis and up-to-the-minute updates of the Masters.
ESPN The Magazine
The “Photo” issue of ESPN The Magazine, on newsstands April 5, contains a two-page Masters preview by Scott Miller in the Playbook section. ESPN golf analysts Paul Azinger and Curtis Strange break down Holes 13, 14, 15 and 16 at Augusta National Golf Club.
This year 72 countries will see the Masters on ESPN platforms and can follow the event on ESPN television, online, mobile and broadband platforms.
Latin America and the Caribbean (all four rounds and the Par 3 Contest coverage to 51 countries and more than 41 million households).
For the first time ever, a live 30-minute preview show will air prior to all four rounds of the Masters in Spanish-speaking Latin America.
In Canada, TSN will air the first two rounds of the Masters and the Par 3 Contest live with same day re-airs in primetime of the third and final rounds. RDS will carry all four rounds live in French and the TSN.ca digital platforms will stream exclusive live coverage of “Amen Corner,” a Featured Group of the day, plus holes 15 and 16. TSN’s television networks reach approximately 15 million households.
In Northern Africa and the Middle East – excluding Israel – all four rounds and the Par 3 Contest will be televised to 21 countries.
The Par 3 Contest, all four rounds of the Masters and exclusive broadband coverage of “Amen Corner,” a Featured Group of the day and holes 15 and 16 will be live on ESPN Play in Spanish-speaking Latin America and on ESPN Play via the WatchESPN platform in Brazil. Additionally, for the first time, a mobile/tablet version of ESPN Play will be available in Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Venezuela, Argentina, Uruguay, Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago.
ESPN Classic will feature a tribute to the Masters in the days leading up to ESPN’s live coverage of the event with 43 hours of special programming. The tribute begins Tuesday, April 9, at 8 p.m. ET with an airing of highlights of the 1963 Masters won by Jack Nicklaus, on the 50th anniversary of that tournament, and will run straight through until 3 p.m. on Thursday, April 11, when ESPN’s live coverage of the 2013 Masters begins. Following the airing of the 1963 event, other Masters that are celebrating important anniversary dates also will air before the tribute airs highlights from every Masters played since 1960, starting chronologically with the 1960 Masters at 1:30 a.m. on Wednesday, April 10.
The Masters Tournament – Augusta National Golf Club, Augusta, GA
(all times Eastern)
Day/Date Program Time Networks
Wed., April 10 Masters Par 3 Contest 3 p.m. ESPN, ESPN3, WatchESPN
SportsCenter at the Masters 5 p.m. ESPN, WatchESPN
Thu., April 11 First Round 3 p.m. ESPN, ESPN Deportes, ESPN3, WatchESPN
First Round 4:30 p.m. ESPN 3D
First Round (encore) 8 p.m. ESPN, WatchESPN
Fri., April 12 Second Round 3 p.m. ESPN, ESPN Deportes, ESPN3, WatchESPN
Second Round 4:30 p.m. ESPN 3D
Second Round (encore) 8 p.m. ESPN, WatchESPN
Sat., April 13 Third Round 4 p.m. ESPN 3D
Sun., April 14 Final Round 4 p.m. ESPN 3D