Report: Luke Donald to join NBC booth in tryout for lead analyst position

PGA Tour pro and Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald sits for interview at golf course

European Ryder Cup captain Luke Donald will be the next to audition for NBC Golf's lead analyst position.

Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

It appears we now know the next candidate to audition for the NBC Golf lead analyst job, and it’s a surprise: former World No. 1 Luke Donald.

According to a report from the Sports Business Journal, Donald will join the NBC Golf booth at the next two PGA Tour events on the schedule: next week’s Cognizant Classic in Florida and the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill, which begins March 7.

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Sports Business Journal also notes that, “Donald is expected to appear in some form on Thursday of the Cognizant broadcast and join play-by-play man Dan Hicks as part of a two-man booth on the weekend.”

Donald, 46, still plays on the PGA Tour, where he has collected five victories in his long career, most recently at the 2012 Transitions, to go along with seven DP World Tour wins. He rose to No. 1 in the Official World Golf ranking in 2011 and spent 40 weeks in the top spot.

Though his success on the course has waned in recent years, golf fans are very familiar with him thanks to his starring performance as European Ryder Cup captain last year in Rome, where he led his team to a comfortable 16.5-11.5 victory over the U.S. team.

Donald’s captaincy was unanimously lauded by players, and in November it was announced that he would captain Team Europe once again in 2025 at Bethpage Black in New York.

Donald is just the latest in a growing list of people to earn a live tryout for the NBC Golf lead analyst position, which was vacated in November when NBC and then-analyst Paul Azinger announced they were parting ways.

Others who have auditioned so far include PGA Tour pro Kevin Kisner, who manned the booth at The Sentry and the WM Phoenix Open, and NBC/Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, who took the reins at the American Express.

At this week’s Mexico Open at Vidanta, veteran caddie Jim “Bones” Mackay will be in the NBC booth. However, Mackay’s appearance is not considered a tryout for the permanent lead analyst job. Mackay, who is currently Justin Thomas’ caddie, served as an on-course reporter for NBC Golf from 2017-2021 following a long career carrying Phil Mickelson’s bag.

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