Pro bowling makes TV comeback

Steve Brownlee

Fox Sports started its Professional Bowlers Association coverage with something of a whimper, showing the PBA Clash on the Sunday before Christmas after the National Football League’s 1 p.m. games.

I knew the PBA was coming to the Fox networks, but I never saw a promo for this event.

Instead, I just happened to be flipping channels looking for more NFL games … and boom! there were the pro bowlers.

I figured later I probably missed the first 10 or 15 minutes, which had to be mostly promo anyway.

My Charter Communications listing showed this 90-minute event ending at 6 p.m. (I could tell it was taped, so it definitely fit in the time slot), but it was obvious as 6 p.m. neared it wasn’t anywhere near finished.

It actually ran until just about 6:40 p.m., meaning it must’ve started 40 minutes late.

I wonder if many viewers who tuned in for the start gave up on them ever showing it?

I also saw a replay listed for this event last week on Fox Sports Detroit, and with more replays possible, I won’t spoil the ending by telling you who won.

But it was an interesting format, though I prefer real games of bowling. They started with eight guys handpicked for the show throwing a 10th frame, eliminating the low man.

The guys involved, and I’ll list them in the same order that the Fox Sports website listed them as to not give away who did well, were Jason Belmonte, Anthony Simonsen, Dom Barrett, Andrew Anderson, EJ Tackett, Marshall Kent, Stuart Williams and Jakob Butturff.

Each subsequent single-ball round knocked out the low man until the final two, who bowled a full game to determine the winner.

There wasn’t a new show on Fox this past Sunday, though they’ll be moving to FS1 for a show at 11 a.m. this Sunday. That’s the PBA Hall of Fame Classic finals, and it will be live.

Starting this weekend, Fox (twice) and FS1 (eight times) will have PBA shows each Sunday through March 10, with seven of the 10 shown live.

Then they go nuts in mid-March with five straight nights of coverage from Monday through Friday, March 18-22, on FS1, the first four live, before picking up nearly weekly coverage into July.

Steve Brownlee can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 252. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.


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