Solheim Cup: Michelle Wie can see future in TV, but still wants to get back inside the ropes

Cy Cyr/Golf Channel

Solheim Cup: Michelle Wie can see future in TV, but still wants to get back inside the ropes

Solheim Cup

Solheim Cup: Michelle Wie can see future in TV, but still wants to get back inside the ropes

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When Michelle Wie decided that her 2019 LPGA season had come to an end, her first phone call was to U.S. captain Juli Inkster. Wie is so invested in the Solheim Cup that she asked if she could come over as an assistant captain to help out a team that would be brimming with rookies.

“Unfortunately, at that point it was too late in the game,” said Wie, who is missing her first Solheim since 2009.

After the hand injury cut her season short in June, Wie’s management team approached Golf Channel to see if there would be any interest in studio work. Since she couldn’t be part of the action at Gleneagles, Wie agreed to talk about it live on Golf Channel as part of the Orlando, Fla., Golf Central studio crew.

She was up at 3 a.m. on Saturday watching golf on TV (a first), fist-pumping at the TV and preparing for her role as an analyst on the show.

“It’s been really hard trying to stay unbiased when watching and taking my notes,” said Wie from the make-up chair before Saturday’s show.

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The first thing Paige Mackenzie told Wie was that she couldn’t say “we” when it came to Team USA. Understandably, that hasn’t been easy.

Wie, who admitted to feeling some nerves, said she first fell in love with the idea of television when she was asked as a youngster to come out on the golf course and commentate after missing the cut by one at the 2004 PGA Tour Sony Open.

“I do have a degree in journalism and all that I guess,” she said. “It’s been fun to finally put that to use.”

Wie will appear on Golf Central from 1:30-3 p.m. ET following Saturday’s play as well as primetime on Golf Central at 8 p.m. ET to recap the day’s action and preview Sunday’s singles.

It didn’t take long for Wie to learn a new TV phrase after Friday’s live Golf Central show “collapsed” after Solheim coverage went long due to slow play. Instead the Golf Channel went directly into PGA Tour action at The Greenbrier.

Much like Wie advised the Solheim rookies, Golf Channel producers have been telling Wie to conserve energy. She could be on air for 90 minutes or 30 minutes this afternoon.

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Typically, Wie’s television appearances consist of one segment, and she mostly talks about herself. Now she’s talking about everyone else and learning how to keep up with all the moving parts (i.e. look at the right camera). As much as Wie is enjoying the challenge of live TV and said it’s something that she’d love to do more of down the road, getting back to the LPGA is her No. 1 priority.

“Definitely wish I was there playing,” she said.

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