US Open 2015 TV schedule: Who to watch in Thursday's round
US Open 2015: Golfers from around the world are in Washington state this week to compete for the US national title on a relatively new course, Chambers Bay, with a new television broadcast partner.
Many of the faces in the field will be the same, but for the first time in 20 years, you're going to watch the US Open men's golf tournament on a new television network.
Established pros such as Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els, Lee Westwood, and Jim Furyk will compete against new young stars Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, and Jordan Spieth.
And, for the first time, Fox will broadcast the US Open. The network and its Fox Sports 1 cable channel begins a new 12-year contract with the United States Golf Association (USGA), announced back in 2013, by televising the 115th annual men's national championship this week.
Fox replaces NBC, which had televised the US Open since Corey Pavin's win at Shinnecock Hills on New York's Long Island in 1995. Longtime Fox network Major League Baseball and NFL announcer Joe Buck, alongside World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman, will be the lead announcers for this year's tournament coverage.
As for this year's golf tournament, another change is the location of the event: Chambers Bay in Washington State. This is the first time the US Open will ever be played in the Pacific Northwest, according to Chambers Bay. The "linksland" course on Puget Sound opened for play in 2007 and was selected by the USGA for this championship the next year, the Seattle Times reports.
The US Open was last contested on the West Coast of the US three years ago when Webb Simpson won the 2012 event at The Olympic Club in San Francisco. Prior to that, in 2010 Graeme McDowell won at Pebble Beach, Calif., and Tiger Woods won the 2008 US Open at Torrey Pines near San Diego.
This year, 156 golfers will tee off in Thursday's first round. Some of the more intriguing threesomes to keep an eye on include the group going off the first tee at 10:33 a.m. Eastern which features six-time Open runner-up Phil Mickelson, two-time Masters champ Bubba Watson, and 2007 US Open champ Angel Cabrera.
Following that group at 11:28 a.m. Eastern, defending US Open champion Martin Kaymer will also go off the 10th tee, along with 2011 US Open winner Rory McIlroy and 2014 US Amateur champion Gunn Yang of South Korea.
Moving to the afternoon, a group of former US Open champions will tee off from No. 1 at 4:33 p.m. Eastern time. 2006 champ Geoff Ogilvy of Australia will be joined by 1994 and 1997 champ Ernie Els of South Africa and his countryman, Retief Goosen, who won the US Open in 2001 and 2004.
And, in a television producer's dream, Tiger Woods and Rickie Fowler will be paired together, along with 2010 British Open champion Louis Oosthuizen of South Africa. That threesome will tee off at 5:28 p.m. Eastern time Thursday.
There are three places you can watch the US Open this year. Beginning approximately at 10 a.m. Eastern time Thursday, USGA.com will have live streaming of the golf tournament. The Fox mobile app, FoxSportsGo.com, will live stream action from the 12th and 15th holes, plus other action, beginning at 1 p.m. Eastern. Fox Sports 1 will begin their live television coverage at noon Eastern. Then, at 8 p.m. Eastern, Fox will pick up the primetime coverage Thursday night.