Brad Faxon makes light of Brooks Koepka girlfriend gaffe
BARRINGTON, R.I. — The social media world lit up following the conclusion of the 117th U.S. Open on Sunday when Fox Sports lead broadcaster Joe Buck had the wrong name of the woman receiving a celebratory kiss from champion Brooks Koepka.
He said it was soccer player Becky Edwards. Analyst Brad Faxon was left to set the record straight that the woman was in fact actress and model Jena Sims.
For a segment of the golf fan base already frustrated with Fox having the country’s premier event despite not covering the PGA Tour on a weekly basis, the mistaken identity only added fuel to the fire.
Faxon did not see the incident as a big deal.
“I got a few more followers,” Faxon joked. “It was sad because Joe is a professional. He never wanted to make that mistake, and he was given that information by someone who thought that was correct. It seems like it is more important now than Brooks Koepka winning the U.S. Open, which is also sad.”
He did manage to make light of it before yesterday’s CVS Health Charity Classic, which he co-hosts along with Billy Andrade at Rhode Island Country Club. When Faxon introduced defending champions Jon Curran and Keegan Bradley, Faxon noted both of their recent marriages. He also announced Curran married a woman from Barrington and that Bradley is expecting a child in November, delivering a line that he is up on relationship statuses.
This is the third of a 12-year deal between Fox and the U.S. Open. Faxon believes each year gets better.
“Definitely. It’s not like NBC was great their first year or CBS was great. You look at those teams and how much they worked together,” he said. “What’s most the challenging for us, we have a better team now than we’ve ever had and we sounded better, but we only work five (or) seven weeks together.”
From Jan. 1 until the Presidents Cup the last weekend of September, CBS will air 21 events. NBC has 13.
Faxon also was high on Fox’ graphic technology, including the shot tracer and the overhead image of the ball’s flight. He believes there is a push for more.
“All the comments we get, people love seeing the graphics and wish they could see more of it, the flight tracker, the Trackman. Nobody ever says to me we’re seeing too much of that,” he said. “I haven’t heard that yet, and if (Fox) heard that, I’m sure they’d adjust.”
Faxon, as well as Buck, will be back in the broadcast booth in nine days for the U.S. Senior Open at Salem Country Club in Peabody as Fox and Fox Sports 1 air 20 hours of coverage in four days.
Bradley and Brooke Henderson both birdied the 18th hole to push them and Andrade to the title at 15-under-par 127. It was the third straight victory in this event for Bradley, who had teamed up with high-school teammate Jon Curran the past two years under the previous format of a two-day best ball.
The two birdies pushed the team of Henderson (who won the LPGA event in Michigan on Sunday and had played Rhode Island in 2011 when it hosted the U.S. Women’s Amateur), Bradley and Andrade past Curran, Paula Creamer and Mark O’Meara, who were in the clubhouse at 14-under. It was the first time since the tournament’s creation in 1999 that either of the co-hosts came out on top.
The new format that put a PGA, LPGA and Champions Tour player together on each team proved to be a hit, with the two best balls of the three counting toward the final score.
“I think we should get together more often, the Champions Tour, the PGA Tour and the LPGA,” said Colin Montgomerie, who played with Billy Horschel and Lexi Thompson.
“I think it’s a great format, and it will work well in the future.”