Golfweek's Rex Hoggard weighed in on the Fall Finish before Tim Finchem's press conference yesterday:
Although minimum purses will remain at current levels, around $4 million, ratings likely will fall off when events shift from current networks (ABC, ESPN, USA Network) to The Golf Channel. The Tour doesn't plan to increase its subsidy to these events – 62 percent – which means sponsors will need to ante up more or tournaments will have less for charities.
Decreased media buys – four-round coverage on TGC reportedly will cost between $600,000 to $650,000 per event, drastically less than what networks currently charge – will help events offset costs, but the concern among many tournament directors and some players is that the "Chase" series will be little more than a place where good events go to die.
The future of the post-Tour Championship tournaments depends on the Tour's ability to convince sponsors that even without the Tigers and Phils of the golf world, these events have value. And so far, that's proven to be a hard sell.