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« SBD: Buck & Norman To Helm Fox's U.S. Open Telecast | Main | Masters Final Round Draws A 7.8, Down From 10.4 »
Tuesday
Apr152014

Bubba's Next & Last Surprise Visit: Morning Drive

Only the Masters champion's agent was scheduled to come by Golf Channel Drive to map out a future Bubba visit with talent coordinator extraordinaire Courtney Holt. At around 4 am, producer Aaron Bearden had confirmed via phone that a typical Tuesday show was a go with coordinating producer Jeff Neubarth. Around the show's 7 am start in front of the studio, a rental car pulled up with Bubba Watson and agent Jens Beck arriving in Beck's rental. Moments later, Neubarth got the call from Holt to come in on his day off because Bubba was on Golf Channel property and wearing the Green Jacket.

Neubarth raced to the studio while Bubba hung out in the control room with the production team. He made no demands and just waited for the show to throw out their playbook, rearrange some chairs, pay a few bills and put a mike on the Masters champion. They sent him down the hall at 7:15.

"You always have to be ready in live TV," said Neubarth. "It's why we love our jobs."

Ryan Lavner summarizes the best insights from Bubba's multiple segments, including how he needed help putting on 18, the story behind his high-five fest en route to the scorecard signing, the reasoning for no further media tour beyond today's appearance on Morning Drive, his defense of Jordan Spieth's behavior Sunday and another reference to the inspiration he took from the Drive, Chip and Putt.

“This is an inspiration. The game of golf, it grew on Sunday. It grew when these kids were there. … It’s going to grow more when families get involved, when parents spend more time with their child (on the course). It’s going to grow y’all closer together. The game is frustrating, but they’re learning together.”

Here's his sit-down with Damon Hack and Kelly Tilghman (note neither has cards with questions or notes…confirmation this was spontaneous!).

The sitdown segment:

Talking Greenbrier, Drive-Chip-Putt and Bagdad.

The inevitable tears, induced by Rosaforte.

The gang talking to Bubba about a few more topics, including video shot of his son whapping a drive.

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Reader Comments (8)

The people's champion--Bubba Watson!!!
04.15.2014 | Unregistered CommenterSmitty
+1 for the necktie.
04.15.2014 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead
Good to see Lauren Thompson back from maternity leave.
04.15.2014 | Unregistered CommenterBrianS
I was lucky enough to catch most of this today.

His stock was raised quite a few points for me when he made Rosaforte step back in his criticism of Spieth, referencing his own past behaviors when he started out on tour.

What I found fascinating was that he recalled nothing of the final 4 holes and had to sit down and watch a replay - talk about being in the zone.
04.15.2014 | Unregistered Commentermainuh
Good on Bubba! Nice work.
04.15.2014 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
Yeah, Bubba came across very well.

Nice video of Caleb hitting the drive! My own parents were somewhat less accepting than Bubba/Angie when I used to do this up against our house with a tennis ball and a baseball bat.
04.15.2014 | Unregistered CommenterRickABQ
Brilliant PR move from Bubba and he came across as wanting to be there. There needs to be more unstructured moments like this on the PGA Tour. Many seem so stiff especially when compared to Bubba's persona.
04.15.2014 | Unregistered CommenterLynn S.
I enjoyed the interview and agree with those who say Bubba comes across as genuine. Rather surprised by the Tiger comment, though.
04.16.2014 | Unregistered Commentermel

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