Tower reporter Gary Koch – a six-time winner on the PGA Tour – joined NBC Sports' golf coverage team full-time in 1997 after having debuted in 1996 as a course reporter on NBC’s coverage of The Players Championship and U.S. Open. Koch works on NBC’s coverage of the PGA Tour, U.S. Open, Ryder Cup, President’s Cup and the rest of NBC’s golf tour.
“Gary is an outstanding announcer who can handle any situation,” said Tom Roy, Executive Producer, NBC Sports. “He does his homework, so he knows in detail what’s going on with the players and how the course is playing. He does his commentary in a way that triggers a conversation with Johnny Miller, which is one of the keys to making our coverage informative and entertaining.”
As tower reporter on NBC’s coverage of The Players Championship, Koch calls the action on the infamous 17th hole island green at the TPC Sawgrass Stadium Course. “It’s the most dramatic setting in all of professional golf,” Koch says. “It’s great theater. Just when I think I’ve seen everything there, something else crazy happens.”
Since 1990, when Koch launched his broadcasting career as a course reporter and 18th hole tower analyst on ESPN’s Senior PGA Tour coverage, he has balanced extensive television work with his playing career. In 2003, Koch began to play on the PGA Champions Tour. In April 2003, Koch and his NBC colleague, Roger Maltbie, teamed up to win the Raphael (better ball) Division at the Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf. In addition to his playing and television careers, Koch also runs his own company – Gary Koch, Inc. – which specializes in golf course design.
Koch's professional playing career began in 1975. He earned 44 top 10 finishes and posted six victories on the PGA Tour: the 1976 Tallahassee Open, the 1977 Florida Citrus Open, the 1983 Eastern Doral Open, the 1984 Isuzu-Andy Williams San Diego Open, the 1984 Bay Hill Classic and the 1988 Panasonic-Las Vegas Invitational.
His highest-earning year was 1984, when his $262,679 placed him 17th on the money-winning list. Prior to turning professional, Koch had a very successful amateur career, highlighted by his Florida State Open title in 1969, a USGA Junior Amateur Championship title in 1970, and the Florida amateur crown in 1971. His Florida Open win earned Koch a spot in Sports Illustrated’s “Faces in the Crowd” section. At the age of 20, Koch qualified as an amateur for the U.S. Open, at Oakmont, where he finished an impressive 57th. Koch also played on the 1973 and 1975 Walker Cup teams and the 1974 World Amateur team.
Koch, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in public relations from the University of Florida in 1974, was the Gators’ first four-time All-America selection. He was a member of Florida’s 1973 NCAA championship team and a two-time Southeastern Conference medalist. Koch won 10 collegiate events at Florida. Each year Florida honors Koch by joining with Central Florida to co-host The Gary Koch Invitational, a prestigious collegiate tournament in his hometown of Tampa.
GolfChannel: Justin Rose chipped in for birdie on the 17th hole and hung on to win the BMW Championship on Sunday.
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