Jim “Bones” Mackay is in for a career change, as it was announced Thursday he would turn his caddie bib in for a job as an on-course reporter for NBC/Golf Channel.
Phil Mickelson and Mackay announced a split as a player-caddie pair two weeks ago, a mutual parting after a legendary 25-year run together.
The left-hander will have his brother, Tim, on the bag the remainder of the season.
Following the news of his new job, Mackay expressed his gratitude at what his former boss had done for him. He added he hoped the best for the Mickelson brothers.
“What are my emotions? My emotions are that I hope it goes really, really well for he and Tim. I texted him this morning and wished him luck,” Mackay said in a conference call. “My life is so much better for having worked with Phil. He’s been great to my family. He’s been great to me. I wish and I hope everything goes incredibly well for them.”
But now Mackay has to focus on his own career. After all, his debut will be at the Open Championship in two weeks.
Well, debut isn’t totally accurate. Mackay actually started his broadcasting career at the 2015 RSM Classic, as he and fellow caddie John Wood (currently looping for Matt Kuchar) worked for the NBC/Golf Channel team that week.
Tommy Roy, the lead producer of golf coverage for NBC, said that experiment went “unbelievably well” and gushed about how ready Mackay appears right now for his new start at the Open.
“He already has ideas, which we’re not going to give away here … But he’s already prepared with other ideas of what he can bring to the telecast, which I so much appreciate and am so glad that he’s on the team,” Roy said.
As for the growing pains Mackay will have to go through? He feels there will be plenty.
There was one thing he learned from his week at the RSM Classic that he can’t ever do on a broadcast going forward.
“The only thing I had to get on Bones the entire time (during the 2015 RSM Classic) was he was chewing on gum during on-cameras,” Roy said. “So from now on, we ixnay the gum during on-cameras.”
What are Mackay’s thoughts here?
“Yeah, don’t ever chew gum on the air,” Mackay said.
Sounds like a guy ready to learn in his new profession.