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From the Bunker: Lamenting what TV coverage of college football has become

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Local golf teaser

Thanksgiving is not a week of very much activity for your local golf writer. There was a senior two-man event at Cider Ridge won by the team of Steward/Shook, and that was about it for the week.

So, it became a weekend of television watching, and I began to list things that bugged me about watching sports on TV. I have multiple televisions and could watch multiple games at the same time. I have been covering high school football on Friday for 50 years, and for the first time since 1971, I was sitting home this year.

The length of the college game was one trend I did not like. On Friday night, a college game started at 6 p.m. and ended right after 10 p.m., while a high school game started at 7 p.m. and ended at 9:15 p.m. The high school plays 12 less minutes, but the college game has been taken over by the networks.

There is an hour pregame show and then another 10-15 minute pregame show when they actually go to the game. They talk about the same stuff over and over again. There are five guys talking with a crowd of people standing behind them yelling and all you can hear is a bunch of people talking over the top of each other and laughing into the mic.

Fox took it to six guys and the desk was filled up so much that they could barely fit on my large-screen television. During the game they have to do all of these sideline stories. I just want to hear the game, not all these different stories during the game. Whatever happened to just two guys calling a game and just talking about the game we are watching?

I don’t watch pregame anymore unless I mute the sound. I don’t need six guys to tell me what they think about what is going to happen. Just give me time to breathe, hear the bands playing and watch the game on the field.

That is what is good about golf on television, but it is beginning to drift into the mode of having to have a show, and golf is just part of the show. The show should be about the event that is taking place and not all of the side stories. Maybe I am just too old-fashioned.

Toys for Kids

One of the great traditions in Calhoun County is the Toys for Kids Golf Classic played out at Pine Hill Country Club. The event will be held Saturday, beginning at 9 a.m. The entry fee is $65 plus one unwrapped toy. The toys go to area children for Christmas.

Usually there are close to 144 players, which means 144 or more toys. Sponsorship opportunities are open as well, just contact the clubhouse.

The format is a four-person blind-draw scramble (A-B-C-D) and the first 144 players who sign up will be eligible to play.

Course news

Anniston Country Club (256-237-8412): There is a dogfight every Saturday and Sunday.

Anniston Municipal, “The Hill” (256-231-7631): A round of golf, if you walk, is only $10 during the week and $12 on weekends. Add $14 for 18 holes if you want a cart. There is a special rate in place on Mondays and Tuesdays only — just $18 for all-day golf.

Cane Creek Golf Course (256-820-9174): There is a special rate in place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Sunday as you can play 18 holes for just $20. Dogfights are taking place on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, with registration time at 9:30 a.m. and a tee time of 10 a.m. You are invited to join fellow seniors and enjoy a round of golf and a great meal from The Cane Creek Grill.

The next City of Anniston senior two-man scramble will be held Dec. 6. The cost is $31 and covers green fees, cart rental and lunch. Tee time is 10 a.m. You must be over 50 years old, and check-in time is 9:30 a.m.

Cider Ridge Country Club (256-831-7222): Veterans — retired and active — can play for just $20 plus tax on the last Tuesday of each month. There is a monthly senior two-person scramble using tee times on the fourth Monday of each month. The cost is $35 a player and includes golf, cart and prizes. There will be a four-man scramble Dec. 17.

Pine Hill Country Club (256-237-2633): There are several dogfights each week at Pine Hill. They are at 10 a.m. Wednesday, noon Friday and 9 a.m. Saturday. The Parking Lot Gang hosts a scramble each Thursday at 11 a.m.

Silver Lakes (256-892-3268): The first Tuesday of each month you can play golf at Silver Lakes for no green fees. You need to have a current RTJ Trail Card for this deal. The cart fee will be $20 if you take a cart. There is a two-man senior scramble the third Tuesday of each month.

The 2021 Bring Your Old Buddy Scramble at Silver Lakes will be hosted on the Mindbreaker and Backbreaker courses on Saturday, Dec. 4 and Sunday, Dec. 5.

Indian Oaks Golf Club (256-820-4030): Course rates are $20 for 18 holes and a cart on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. It is $15 for 18 holes and a cart on Wednesday. On Saturday and Sunday, the rate is $25 for 18 holes and a cart.

Indian Oaks is closed on Monday and open from 1 p.m. to dark Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. It is open all day on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.