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August 8, 2018

CBS Sports News Conference

St. Louis, Missouri

CBS Sports

THE MODERATOR: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. For those of you that don't know, CBS Sports will be televising our 35th PGA Championship this week, and their 28th in a row dating back to 1991. For the next 30 minutes, we are very fortunate to be joined by many of the CBS Sports team, including all of the award-winning announcers that you all are so very familiar with.

And we are joined by executive producer and senior vice president of production, Harold Bryant. Harold, wave.

Coordinating producer Lance Barrow.

Director Steve Milton.

And president of CBS Sports, David Berson.

You are also going to be able to get up close and personal with many of the CBS announcers when we finish this quick couple of minutes up in front. But first, we're going to hear from the chairman of CBS Sports, Sean McManus. After that, we'll take a couple of questions, and then we're going to go into one-on-one interviews for everybody in the interview room.

Sean, let's go ahead and start. Thanks for being with us today.

SEAN McMANUS: Thank you, Julius.

THE MODERATOR: You and your team are ready to prepare to deliver the 100th PGA Championship to the world, I would imagine?

SEAN McMANUS: We are. We're excited about this event. We're excited about our relationship, which as Julius says, goes back in the modern era to 1991. I'm proud of my golf team up here. I think this is the best golf team in the business. The PGA has provided us with, as you all know, amazing drama over the past couple of decades, and we couldn't be more excited about documenting what's going to happen here starting tomorrow morning.

I'm also very excited about the move that the PGA is making to May. I think it's good for the overall sport of golf. I think it's good for the PGA. I think it's good for fans. And I think it's really good for CBS also. So I think that's a real positive.

Golf, I think, is incredibly well positioned right now. Television ratings are up. Awareness is up. The hope that we had that the new young guns were going to start going to the fore and playing well is happening, and each and every week, you see a different story developing. So I think that's really positive.

Proud to say also we're going to be doing the next three Majors. Because of the way the schedule works out, we're doing this event. Obviously, we're doing the Masters in April, and then we'll be doing the first PGA Championship to take place in May. So I think that's a really positive story line.

With respect to the production this week, I know everyone likes writing about technology. We've got more technology on our broadcast starting on Thursday than we've ever had before. TopTracer all 18 holes, side slabs, mics in the cup, rover cams -- anything that has been done in golf before, we're going to be showcasing.

But it's all about the story telling. Technology is great, but the story telling, and what I think this team behind me does such a good job of doing, is really our main focus on golf coverage.

So I'm pumped up. Very, very excited about everything. I have one sad note to share with you, and that is that up on the stage right now is not Ian Baker-Finch. Ian's 97-year-old mom passed away yesterday. So Ian is on his way back to Australia. So our thoughts and prayers, obviously, go out to our comrade Ian Baker-Finch.

So with that, Julius, I think we open it up to a couple of questions. And then we're going to give each of you an opportunity to meet individually with any of the talent, management, or production team who's up here. So we'll start off with a couple of questions.

THE MODERATOR: Very good. Thanks, Sean.

Q. This is for Nick. This goes back to '92. Two things that I heard from a writer who was at Muirfield talked to you after your win at The Open Championship and asked you your schedule, and you told them you were going to go to Africa to play in a tournament so you could get ready to play in the heat in St. Louis, and you got here and everybody was looking for outerwear.
NICK FALDO: No. Good start, no.

Q. Second thing is, I think, truer. I talked to Nick Price last week, and he said -- first of all, he said that David Ledbetter told you earlier in the week that this golf course was a good fit for your game, but Nick was surprised at your third round -- when he talked to David, David said you lost focus. You came out the next day and lit up the golf course. What do you remember about that third round?
NICK FALDO: Well, if you've lost focus, you can't remember a thing (laughter). Honestly, I looked at the score, and I came in -- I can remember '92. I can remember I finished second. I can remember I was trying to hole my bunker shots and chip shots trying to catch Pric-y. Apart from that, everything else is a blur. So I'm really sorry. Thanks.

SEAN McMANUS: Honesty is the best policy, I think.

THE MODERATOR: Anyone else dare to ask a question to Nick?

Q. For the golf analysts, if there were two or three holes that are going to determine this championship, which ones are those going to be on this course, and what makes those particular holes so challenging?
FRANK NOBILO: I can remember Nick playing in '90, '92. I think the stretch, the closing stretch the last four holes. There's no question, you have a wonderful blend. You also get a dogleg right in the 17th hole here. So you get the difficult 15th hole. Arguably, the longest par 3, not necessarily the most difficult par 3 on the golf course in 16. 17 is that risk/reward opportunity on par 5 that a Dustin Johnson or defending champion Justin Thomas would love. And then there's 18, which turns the other way.

I think, in order to close out a championship, as Nick knows more than I do, how difficult it is to reset with just a few holes to go, especially when they bend in different directions.

Q. Peter, I wanted to ask you, as one of the most renowned teachers in the world as well as being a great golf announcer, what do you see with Tiger's swing these days? And do you think it can hold up at his age and get him back to a championship?
PETER KOSTIS: Well, everything about Tiger revolves around his recent surgery and the back fusion, and I think that he has done exactly what he needs to do to swing around that back issue. I like the way he's moving the club. I like the way he's moving his body, especially given the fact that he has the fused vertebrae.

I have a little bit of an experience with that because my son, who's now 30 and a good player, had two diskectomies right like Tiger did in that same place, and basically we made the same adjustments in his golf swing that Tiger's made in his.

I don't think Tiger's golf swing is going to be an issue moving forward. I think his physical condition, God willing his back holds up. And number two, I think he's got to get the mindset back that he had prior to all the injuries and all the surgeries. I think that's where his focus needs to be now.

THE MODERATOR: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you very much. Before we ask everybody to come up for some one-on-ones, we're going to take two photographs.

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