As the calendar turns to April, golf fans’ hearts start pumping faster as the anticipation for The Masters grows. On Thursday April 11, golf’s best will tee off at Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia for the first of the season’s major tournaments.
Considering The Masters officially starts early Thursday morning and is preceded by a Par 3 Contest on Wednesday, many fans’ viewing schedules will likely be interrupted by petty things like work, school and errands. But, never fear, technology has made it easy to follow along while on the go, and yes, even the sport of golf has adapted to provide live online streaming, helpful apps and even a mobile radio stream to bring the magic of Augusta to every fan, no matter where they find themselves as Tiger Woods rounds Amen Corner.
Television coverage of the event begins on Wednesday, April 10 with the annual Par 3 Contest, a family-filled mini tournament, at 3 pm on ESPN. The network also has the early round coverage on Thursday and Friday from 3 pm to 7:30 pm.
After the cut, CBS takes over the broadcasting rights and will air coverage beginning at 3 pm on Saturday and Sunday. The programming guide will tell viewers coverage ends at 7 pm, but it’s really an until – the – round – is – over end time and, on Sunday, that includes the Green Jacket Ceremony. Expect 60 Minutes and The Amazing Race to be delayed.
For viewers who want to catch the early action of the first two rounds, Golf Channel will be airing “Live From” The Masters on Thursday and Friday from 8 am-3 pm, Saturday from 9:30 am – 3 pm and Sunday from 9:30 am – 2 pm “Live From” features highlights and live look-ins at all the golfers on the course during the early parts of the round.
Users who can’t get to a television but have access to a computer, can stream coverage of the event online at Masters.com. The site will broadcast live from the practice rounds and range Monday through Wednesday and will stream the entirety of the Par 3 Contest on Wednesday.
When the official tournament begins, Masters.com will air footage from the range, Amen Corner (where viewers can catch action on the 11th, 12th and 13th holes in one location), Holes 16 and 17, as well as full coverage of two featured groups, which follows a single group for its entire round. The site will also stream the entirety of the Green Jacket Ceremony following the conclusion of the tournament on Sunday.
Masters.com also has a free radio stream of all the action available on the site or via the mobile app. Viewers just looking to catch a few highlights can check out PGATour.com and ESPN.com/Golf.
- The Masters app: The Masters app is the official app of The Masters and Augusta National Golf Course. Via the app, users are able to stream video from Amen Corner, Holes 16 and 17 and live coverage of the two featured groups, all from a smartphone or tablet. Users can also check in on the action on the range, watch highlights, interviews and feature videos. Additionally, the app has a live updated leaderboard and news stream, photo gallery, course information and list of pairings and tee times. Fans can set the app to push out scoring alerts from their favorite players.
- The PGA Tour app: This app allows users to follow all of the scoring and lead changes throughout the tournament. Using the leaderboard feature, users can see how many holes a player is through and their scoring for the round compared to scoring for the tournament. Users are also able to select their favorite players to be viewed together at the top of the leaderboard, instead of having to scroll through the entire field to find a specific player. To view a player’s scorecard, users just click on the player’s name from the leaderboard. The scorecard also features video highlights of that golfer’s best – or worst – moments on the course. Also, straight from the leaderboard, users are able to see Tee Times and the FedEx Cup standings.
- The Golf Channel app: The Golf Channel has minimal coverage of The Masters, as most of the television rights sit in the hands of ESPN and CBS, but the app still provides users with breaking news updates and video highlights from its various news shows.
- WatchESPN: Users who get ESPN through a cable subscription can enter their account information into the app, which then allows streaming of full ESPN coverage of the tournament on a smartphone or tablet.
Twitter remains one of the best ways to follow a live event in real time if viewers can’t quite get to a television or stream content. Not only does Twitter provide news, live updates and photos, but humor and good-natured trash talking also frequently roll through Twitter streams.
The official news and updates follow @The_Masters, @TheMastersNews and @PGATour. For news from the course, @SI_Golf and ESPN’s lead golf reporter, @BobHarig will be following the top players and reporting from the post-round press conferences.
Most of the top golfers are also active on Twitter, even Tiger Woods, although his is filled with mostly promotional tweets and pictures officially announcing his relationship. Dustin Johnson (@DJohnsonPGA) and Keegan Bradley (@Keegan_Bradley) actively use the social network with the latter frequently engaging with fans. Rickie Fowler (@RickieFowlerPGA) tweets #GOTIME with an attached Instagram photo every time he heads out to the first tee while Graeme McDowell (@Graeme_McDowell) provides amusing anecdotes from tournaments.