In its eighth year at the Masters Tournament at Augusta (Ga.) National Golf Club, ESPN will air 4.5 hours of live Tournament play daily from the first two rounds and the traditional Par 3 Contest the day preceding the Tournament. 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, WatchESPN and ESPN Deportes will air 4.5 hours of live first and second round action on Thursday, April 9, and Friday, April 10, from 3-7:30 p.m. ET with an edited encore presentation in prime time each night from 8-11 p.m.
Prior to the live television windows Thursday and Friday, SportsCenter will air updates every 30 minutes beginning at 9 a.m. daily. Thursday morning’s ceremonial first tee shot with legendary golfers Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player will air in the 8 a.m. hour of SportsCenter.
Mike Tirico will host ESPN’s Thursday and Friday telecasts and will conduct player interviews from Augusta National’s Butler Cabin. Tirico and ESPN golf analyst Curtis Strange will join CBS’ golf announcer crew for the telecasts. Musician/actor Harry Connick Jr. again voices ESPN’s opening segments.
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 6.
On the first two days of competition, Thursday and Friday, April 9-10, beginning at 9 a.m., 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.
A one-hour SportsCenter at the Masters special will air Wednesday, April 8, at 5 p.m. on ESPN with a preview of the tournament. Host Scott Van Pelt will be joined by analysts Andy North, Curtis Strange, Paul Azinger and Dottie Pepper, reporter Tom Rinaldi and ESPN.com national columnist Gene Wojciechowski. The SportsCenter special follows ESPN’s telecast of the Masters Par 3 Tournament from 3-5 p.m.
On Tuesday, April 7, SportsCenter will air the news conferences of several prominent players live (schedule to be determined) and will report the first-round groupings as soon as they are announced.
Van Pelt and Mike Tirico will host SportsCenter reports from the Masters with North, Strange, Azinger, Pepper, Rinaldi and Wojciechowski.
Among the features that will be presented during ESPN’s Masters coverage:
- Rory McIlroy talks about trying to complete his career Grand Slam with a Masters win
- Defending Masters champion Bubba Watson talks with Van Pelt.
- A 10-year look back at Tiger Woods’ memorable chip shot on the 16th hole at Augusta in 2005.
Masters Par 3 Contest
The fun and family-oriented Masters Par 3 Contest will air Wednesday, April 8, from 3-5 p.m. on ESPN. The contest, which began in 1960 and includes many current Masters players as well as greats of the past, 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 9-10, 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. Luis Alfredo Alvarez and Sergio Dipp will host coverage from the ESPN Deportes studio.
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 and ESPN Deportes also will be available via WatchESPN. Launched in October 2010, WatchESPN delivers live access on computers, smartphones, tablets, Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. It is currently accessible in more than 93 million households nationwide to fans who receive ESPN’s networks as part of their video subscription.
ESPN.com, celebrating its 20th anniversary, launched a new design on April 1. Coverage of the Masters Tournament will be extensive and will include:
- News, reactions and columns from senior golf writers Bob Harig and Jason Sobel, national columnist Gene Wojciechowski and com senior writer Ian O’Connor.
- “Quiet Please,” ESPN.com’s weekly golf preview program, hosted by Scott Van Pelt and Andy North, on Tuesday of Masters week and shot on site in Augusta, Ga.
- “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.
- Senior golf analyst Michael Collins will hand out nightly grades for the top 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 GolfCast chat with an easy to use interface with scoring, video and social media elements hosted by Sobel, Collins and O’Connor.
- Links to Masters.com incorporating traffic roll-up of live feeds from Amen Corner, Holes 15 and 16 and Featured Groups as well as driving range video.
- Video clips from ESPN golf analysts Andy North, Curtis Strange, Paul Azinger and Dottie Pepper.
- Photo Gallery wrapping up the year’s first major
- Live scoring from Masters.com.
- Interactive elements including Masters conversation pages.
- Pepper shares in video form what she thinks are the top 5 hardest shots to hit at Augusta National.
- Wojciechowski examines why defending Masters champion Bubba Watson isn’t a favorite of his peers.
- On Monday, April 6, ESPN.com will launch its first PGA Tour Secret Survey, where 103 touring pros (including 21 major champions) answered questions anonymously on topics such as: Will Tiger Woods win another major? Might Rory McIlroy wrap up the career Grand Slam this week at Augusta?
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 also will guest on network talk shows. Additionally, the weekly Ian O’Connor Show (Sundays 7-9 a.m.) will originate from Augusta on April 12, and Scott Van Pelt will appear on SVP & Russillo (weekdays 1-4 p.m.) Tuesday through Friday to discuss the news of the day.
ESPN The Magazine
The Point Guard Issue of ESPN The Magazine (on newsstands April 3) includes a lengthy sit-down interview with two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson by Scott Van Pelt – topics include Augusta, Tiger Woods, Steph Curry and more. The video version of the interview airs on ESPN SportsCenter on April 4.
This year 53 countries will see the Masters on ESPN platforms and can follow the event on ESPN television, online, mobile and broadband platforms.
- In Latin America and the Caribbean, all four rounds and the Par 3 Contest coverage to 52 countries and more than 52 million households.
- A live 30-minute studio 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/RDS.ca digital platforms will stream exclusive live coverage of “Amen Corner,” a Featured Group of the day, plus holes 15 and 16. TSN’s/RDS’ television networks reach more than 12 million households.
- The Par 3 Contest, all four rounds of the Masters and exclusive broadband coverage of “Amen Corner,” Featured Groups of the day, holes 15 & 16, Masters In Depth and Masters On The Range will be streamed live on ESPN Play in Spanish-speaking Latin America and the Caribbean; and via the WatchESPN platform in Brazil.
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 7, at 8 p.m. with an airing of highlights of the 1981 Masters won by Tom Watson and will run straight through until 3 p.m. on Thursday, April 9, when ESPN’s live coverage of the 2015 Masters begins. The tribute features highlights from every Masters played since 1960 with some special anniversaries, among them the 55th anniversary of Arnold Palmer’s 1960 win, the 50th anniversary of Jack Nicklaus’ 1965 win and the 40th of Nicklas’ win in 1975.
The Masters Tournament – Augusta National Golf Club, Augusta, GA
(all times Eastern)
|Wed., April 8||Masters Par 3 Contest||3 p.m.||ESPN, WatchESPN|
|SportsCenter at the Masters||5 p.m.||ESPN, WatchESPN|
|Thu., April 9||First Round||3 p.m.||ESPN, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN|
|First Round (encore)||8 p.m.||ESPN, WatchESPN|
|Fri., April 10||Second Round||3 p.m.||ESPN, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN|
|Second Round (encore)||8 p.m.||ESPN, WatchESPN|
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Media Contact: Andy Hall, [email protected]