Williams drives mornings for Golf Channel
STATELINE – Gary Williams has a great job, and he’s the first to admit that.
Williams loves the game of golf, and he gets paid to talk about it. He couldn’t ask for anything more. Williams is the host for Golf Channel’s Morning Drive TV show, which airs from 4 to 6 a.m. on the West Coast.
This week is different for him. He gets a chance to play the game he lives and breathes instead of talking about it non-stop. Usually he’s the one interviewing players, and this week he’s being interviewed by members of the print and electronic media at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Club.
This is Williams’ second trip to the ACC. He played last year and finished 36th with 27 points and $3,766 in prize money.
“I was blown away,” Williams said. “I felt like I was at a professional tournament.
“I expect to play better this year. My goal is to finish in the top 20.”
That certainly is doable considering Williams carries a 4 handicap. Not bad for a guy who doesn’t play that often.
“I probably play 20-25 times a year,” Williams said on the driving range at Edgewood. “I’d love to play more. There isn’t a lot of time. This (tournament) is about the most extreme level that I play during the year.
“I play in some PGA pro-am events and some Champions Tour events.”
Williams played golf in high school, but not in college. He attended Vanderbilt for two years and eventually graduated from Guilford.
After spending some time in Washington, D.C., Williams got involved in golf. He became an assistant pro at the Governors Club in Chapel Hill, N.C., and then moved to Greensboro Country Club and then Seminole Golf Club. After a short stint at Seminole, Williams decided the life of a club professional wasn’t for him.
Williams went to Charlotte, N.C., and started doing a weekend golf radio show for no pay, and he did so well he was offered a salaried position as the host for a drive-time sports show.
After nine years there, he was hired by SiriusXM Radio, which led to his Sports Channel gig in 2011.
“It’s a dream job,” Williams said for the second time during the brief interview. “All my buddies are very successful. They all look at me and tell me I’m the lucky one.”
Williams loves what Golf Channel does for the game and his particular show.
There are 10 live hours per week on the average, and the show re-airs three times a week. It’s obvious the network puts a lot of resources into Williams’ show.
If you’ve ever listened to Williams’ show, it has a casual feel to it. The show does a great job of going in depth about the people who play the game.
This isn’t Williams’ first TV gig. He has done some play-by-play on ESPN, and he was a member of the Carolina Panthers’ television crew.