CBS’ Mic’d-Up Segment is Great For Fans, Is it Great for The Players?

Collin Morikawa, 2023 Genesis Invitational,Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Collin Morikawa, 2023 Genesis Invitational,Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

Ever since CBS first introduced its mic’d up segment last month it has been deemed a massive success. Max Homa, who was reportedly one of the main catalysts in bringing the popular segment to our TV screens, was the first player to wear the mic during his third round of this year’s Farmers Insurance Open.

Fast-forward to this week’s Genesis Invitational and it was two-time major winner Collin Morikawa’s turn to step into the spotlight on the CBS broadcast. Once again, the segment was a massive hit as Collin walked us through his time on the iconic risk-reward Par 4 10th hole at Riviera Country Club.

Morikawa’s commentary throughout the entire segment was fascinating and it is easy to understand why both fans and media alike have fallen in love with the mic’d up viewing experience.

As great as the introduction of the ingenious concept has been there is still a question as to whether or not it is great for the players during competitive rounds on Tour, however.

On Saturday during his segment, Collin hit a nice little shot with his 5-wood to set up a birdie opportunity at Riviera’s 10th. Unfortunately for Morikawa though, he narrowly missed his birdie attempt during a pivotal moment of his third round.

The 2020 PGA Championship winner began moving day well within touching distance of the leaders, but near-misses and costly errors during the latter half of his third round almost assuredly ended any hopes he had of winning this year’s Genesis Invitational.

Collin would go on to birdie the remaining Par 5s on the back-nine at Riviera but three bogeys in a four-hole stretch to conclude his day will undoubtedly prove costly.

It was Morikawa’s worst round of the week, a 72, and it came on the day that he had worn the Airpods for the CBS broadcast.

CBS’ mic ‘d-up segment is great for fans, is it great for the players?

In 2023 CBS has featured Max Homa at the Farmers Insurance Open, Keith Mitchell at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, Tom Kim at last week’s WM Phoenix Open, and Collin Morikawa at this week’s Genesis Invitational.

On each occasion, the player who donned the mic for the CBS broadcast during their Saturday rounds had their worst round, or in Tom Kim’s case, tied for his worst, of the tournament.

Max fired a 71 at the Farmers, the worst of his four rounds at Torrey Pines this year, Mitchell a Saturday 70 at the Pro-Am, Tom Kim a Saturday 73, his worst round at that stage, and Morikawa a 72 on Saturday at the Genesis.

Of course, Homa rebounded beautifully and stormed back on Sunday to win the Farmers. Keith Mitchell also bounced back at Pebble Beach on Sunday en route to a top-10 finish. For Tom Kim, however, he struggled again on Sunday at the WM Phoenix Open when he shot an identical 73 that dropped him down the leaderboard.

It remains to be seen how Collin will finish during his Sunday round at Riviera, but he probably lost any chance he had of contending for this year’s title.

So is getting mic’d up for a CBS segment during an event the cause for these sluggish rounds? Perhaps, or maybe not, but it certainly is an interesting question to ponder, especially for the players.

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Perhaps that is why some players have been; or may be hesitant, to don the mic for the CBS crew.

The next opportunity we have to watch a player take part in a live mic’d up segment will likely come at the Masters in April.

It will definitely be interesting to see who volunteers to wear the mic for the CBS crew at Augusta National during 2023’s first major.