Elling On TGC's New Look

Wait, I meant GOLF CHANNEL, not TGC or even GC. My apologies to the brand.

Anyway, Steve Elling shares a few eye opening numbers in looking at The Golf...dammit, there I go again...in looking at GOLF CHANNEL's...wait, is the apostrophe s in caps too? Ah whatever. Here's what he wrote.

The undisputed heavyweight king of cable sports, ESPN is carried in 92 million homes while the Golf Channel logs in at 75 million. However, those numbers don't represent much other than unfulfilled potential if nobody is watching.

According to Nielsen Media Research, the average number of people who watched the Golf Channel at any moment in a 24-hour broadcast day during the 2006 fall season was a minuscule 44,000 people -- the approximate population of Titusville -- or 1.1 million fewer people below ESPN's average in the same time frame.

Actually, more stunning was this chart buried at the end of his piece...

Network     Sport     Avg. viewers
ESPN    Multiple    1,153,000
ESPN2    Multiple    324,000
NFL Network    Pro football    119,000
Speed Channel    Auto racing    117,000
Versus    Pro hockey    75,000
ESPN Classic    Sports history    66,000
ESPN News    Sports news    62,000
Golf Channel    Golf coverage    44,000

That's right, more people are watching ESPN News and ESPN Classic and bloody hockey on the network formerly known as Outdoor Life.

This also was a surprise....

Industry observers anticipated sweeping personnel changes when the contract was announced, but the staffing has mostly been handled in-house. McGuire estimated that the company only added a half-dozen employees to its overall payroll, bringing the total to around 385, but some of the names were crucial additions. Leading the way was the addition of six-time major champion Nick Faldo, who after two well received years at ESPN/ABC, will serve as lead analyst.

Only six new staffers?