VIEWS: TV golf analyst calls it the way she sees it

Dottie Pepper learned to watch her mouth when most of us did, but at 43 still finds herself working on control.

The Golf Channel analyst who called her former Solheim Cup teammates "Choking freaking dogs" during an event telecast two years ago could have swore she was off the air. Returning to the tape via YouTube proves she understandably was, for 6.5 seconds.

"Certainly hope our audio is a little better next time," Pepper said.

A glitch unearthed Pepper's comments during the 2007 Cup in Halmstad, Sweden, as the Americans were in the throes of squandering a pair of winnable matches.

She stood by her dogged criticism then and gave hints during a recent conference call of a willingness to dispense tough luck again when the international match-play event comes to Rich Harvest Farms on Aug. 21-23 in Sugar Grove.

"We've seen a lot of things over the years that have been brought out, just amazing play, when you're playing for your teammates and you're playing for your country," Pepper said.

Pepper represented the U.S. in six Solheim Cups before joining Brian Hammons in the TV booth for the 2005 tournament at Crooked Stick in Indiana. She compares the pair's rapport to that of an old couple finishing one another's sentences.

Increasing her brand and aptitude after leaving the LPGA Tour, the former Dottie Mochrie will broadcast almost 40 tournaments for TGC or NBC this season, including a first-time stint as a Masters analyst this past spring.

TGC was unauthorized to contribute live coverage, so Pepper had more time to think her words through. Her niece broke the news about the sting in Sweden, saying, "Dot Dot, you're on YouTube."

Anxious to see Rich Harvest Farms' challenging twists and turns up close for the first time next week, Pepper naturally picked the U.S. to capture its eighth Cup in 11 tries. She cautioned against any American runaway, adding that captain's pick Michelle Wie could make an important difference.

"No wins, but certainly among the players who were in contention for a spot," Pepper said. "She was playing the best, despite not qualifying for the U.S. Open going into the matches.  I believe based upon that, she earned her pick."

• Kevin Druley is a sportswriter for Shaw Suburban Media. Write him at kdruley@kcchronicle.com.

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