“In your life have you seen anything like that?!”
That line takes golf fans back to an unforgettable image, as Tiger Woods’ ball hung on the lip of the hole before dropping in for an improbable and nearly impossible birdie chip on the 16th hole at Augusta National on Sunday of the 2005 Masters. Woods would go on to win his fourth green jacket in a playoff against Chris DiMarco, birdieing the first playoff hole, but the winning putt on 18 isn’t the memory that is forever etched into the golf fans’ collective mind.
The end result of sporting events go down in record books to be preserved for posterity, but for those watching, it’s the moments, sometimes a final play but other times something that happens well before the final whistle, buzzer, or putt drops. In the age of televised sports, millions watching around the world are able to share those collective memories.
The announcer’s call can become legendary — Verne Lundquist has many of those such calls — but the unheralded people behind creating those moments and telling that particular part of the story are the directors, producers, and men and women in the production trucks and behind cameras.
At CBS Sports, Steve Milton has been the lead director for every Golf on CBS broadcast, including the Masters and PGA Championship, since 1997, as well as the lead director for the SEC on CBS since 2003. In that time, he’s had the chance to tell those stories through the many camera lenses shooting the events, offering the view and series of angles that millions will see and remember those iconic moments by.
Lundquist has been on most every major golf and college football broadcast Steve Milton has directed, and the legendary announcer holds Milton in high esteem for his ability to tell a story visually, allowing Lundquist as an announcer to let the moment shine and the images speak for themselves.
“If I know that Steve is in the truck, I know that I can shut up, as we all should more than we do, and let the director let the sound play, let the guy create a story visually,” Lundquist said. “Nobody comes to mind, but there are certain director of whom you would never say, ‘Boy he’s gonna be brilliant at this.’ They’re technicians instead of storytellers. Steve is one of the ultimate storytellers.”