U.S. Ryder Cup team members announce ESPN College GameDay guest picker for Arkansas vs. Georgia

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ESPN’s College GameDay spent Saturday morning in beautiful Athens, Georgia, one of America’s best college towns ahead of today’s Southeastern Conference clash between the University of Georgia and the University of Arkansas.

Joining the crew of Rece Davis, Kirk Herbstreit, Desmond Howard, David Pollack and Lee Corso was Georgia Bulldog Harris English, fresh off his role in the U.S. Ryder Cup team’s resounding 19-9 victory last weekend over Team Europe.

All the team members, including Captain Steve Stricker and his assistant captains, participated in a promo video that was a home run. It showed Xander Schauffele, who attended San Diego State, still puffing away on his victory cigar in a lounge chair, Daniel Berger and Brooks Koepka, who was wearing a paper bag over his head, making fun of their alma mater, Florida State, and their winless season, and a pair of Texans in Jordan Spieth and Scottie Scheffler giving the “Hook’em horns” sign.

English isn’t the first golfer to be chosen as a guest picker. At the 2020 Masters in November, the GameDay crew set up at Augusta National’s Par-3 Course with Jack Nicklaus, who won the individual national title at Ohio State. ESPN just so happened to own the early-round broadcast rights to the Masters, but ESPN hasn’t held the rights to the PGA Tour since 2006. That’s about to change in a few months. The PGA Tour struck a nine-year rights deal with ESPN for digital rights between 2022 and 2030, which is designed to deliver more video content and reach a broader audience.

“Think about the Tour being promoted on ESPN and their digital families, which is north of 50 million unique viewers from what we have today,” said PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan at time of the announcement.

Consider this an early sign of what is to come: a larger presence for golf on “The Worldwide Leader in Sports,” which has a way of trumpeting its partners and overlooking those entities that it doesn’t have a financial incentive to promote.

Consider hearing English say, “Go Dawgs,” on Saturday as a signal that golf is back in ESPN’s good graces for the foreseeable future.

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