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Rise Guys Return To Sacramento

Jason Barrett

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This past March when Kevin “Whitey” Gleason and Mark Kreidler, along with their partner, Dan Dibley – collectively known in sports-talk radio as the Rise Guys – were let go by The Game (KGMZ, 95.7 FM) in San Francisco, they were stunned. Sure, in the tumultuous and often mysterious world of radio, anything seems possible. Firings are common, re-hirings routine, and re-invention a survival requirement for stations as well as their personalities.

The two were briefly on the street wondering what happened, but all that changed two weeks ago when ESPN 1320 (KCTC AM) in Sacramento announced it had hired Gleason and Kreidler – for an afternoon show still called “The Rise Guys,” which debuts Monday in the 2-6 p.m. slot. The pair now work for the same company, Entercom, that fired them in the spring.

It was almost three years ago exactly that Gleason and Kreidler bolted from their comfy, successful morning perch at KHTK (1140 AM) in Sacramento for the greener pasture of the San Francisco gig, where they dove headfirst into Bay Area sports mania. It was hard to fault them for the change of venue.

“We had an incredible opportunity to go to a larger market in San Francisco, which was a good career move,” Gleason said recently, sitting in a conference room at his new station’s Old Foothill Farms studios.

Kreidler and Gleason became a team in 2009 when Kreidler joined Gleason’s enduring Rise Guys franchise, which then also included Mark Lowe, known as the “Phantom.” Lowe didn’t take the San Francisco excursion. Kreidler had been an acclaimed Sacramento Bee sports columnist and frequent guest of the show. Gleason felt he and Kreidler complemented each other on the air, and the partnership has been a strong one.

“You have roles on a show,” Gleason said. “What Mark brings is the knowledge and journalistic integrity that help route us. You’ve got to have fun, but if you don’t know what you’re talking about, nobody cares how much fun you’re having,” Gleason said.

Baseball Hall Of Fame voter, Kreidler has covered multiple World Series, the Olympics and numerous Super Bowls, so he knows big-time sports well. Kreidler has also written three well-received nonfiction books, including “Four Days to Glory: Wrestling With the Soul of the American Heartland” and “The Voodoo Wave: Inside a Season of Triumph and Tumult at Maverick’s.”

Gleason is a radio veteran whose Rise Guys show had aired on KHTK for 12 years. He has more than 30 years in radio, moving into sports talk in 1999. He said going to KMGZ “did not work out ideally” but “I would do it again in a heartbeat. I think our show for having been in San Francisco is a better show than it was.”

Kreidler said they became much stronger at focusing on various elements of their broadcasts.

“I became much better at asking basic questions like ‘Who’s this segment directed toward? Why would we be talking about this thing? Why we would we have this guest?’ ” he said.

Both note that they couldn’t have chosen a better time to come back to Sacramento and talk sports. If it was a golden era when the Kings were playoff locks and legitimate title contenders, then current times are significantly richer in quantity if not quality. The A’s look like championship material and the Giants have reasonable post-season aspirations. Soccer has hit Sacramento hard with Republic FC, and the River Cats continue as a national model for running a minor-league sports franchise.

“This is becoming such a more sophisticated sports market,” Kreidler said. “It’s been coming on for awhile, but you really see it the last couple of years.”

The homecoming has been auspiciously calm and welcoming for the pair so far. Kreidler never left his longtime Davis home, so his commute has relaxed. Gleason, who was renting in Pacifica, will move back into his Sacramento home this fall.

Gleason and Kreidler plan on being as current as possible, monitoring trending topics as well as understanding their sports entertainment show may not always be just fun and games. They believe the best shows are personal and resonate from topics they and the listeners are truly passionate about.

While their name doesn’t make as much sense now that they’ll be on in the afternoon, Gleason said the 1320 management feels it still has cachet in town.

Kreidler matter-of-factly observed that radio is a “weird business.” He said he and Gleason feel lucky to be back in Sacramento.

For the full article visit the Sac Bee where it was originally published

Sports Radio News

Ryan Edwards Moves to The Sports Zoo on KOA

“Edwards has been on the radio in Denver since 2009. He spent eight years with 104.3 The Fan. He also did a short stint at Mile High Sports Radio.”

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Ryan Edwards is staying with KOA, but his hours are about to change. The Denver sports radio staple is moving off of Broncos Country Tonight to join Alfred Williams and Dave Logan on The Sports Zoo in afternoon drive.

“I am thrilled to join radio and football legends Dave Logan and Alfred Williams on The KOA Sports Zoo,” Edwards said in a press release. “I look forward to bringing a fans’ perspective to the Denver Broncos and all things Denver sports.”

Edwards has been on the radio in Denver since 2009. He spent eight years with 104.3 The Fan. He also did a short stint at Mile High Sports Radio.

He joined iHeart Denver in 2017. He was on Orange & Blue 760 before the company replaced the station with a conservative talk format. He moved to KOA in 2019, where he has worked on Broncos Country Tonight with Benjamin Albright.

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Jason Fitz: Keyshawn Johnson Cannot Be Serious With Trevor Lawrence Take

“There is no way Trevor Lawrence is the eighth-best quarterback out of eight left in the playoffs after doing what he did after the first quarter of that last game.”

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Jason Fitz

When he was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2021, Trevor Lawrence was heralded as a once-in-a-lifetime type of prospect. While his career had a bit of a rocky start, he has shown a lot in year two, including leading one of the largest come-from-behind victories in playoff history Saturday night against the Chargers. Jason Fitz cannot believe that isn’t enough to impress Keyshawn Johnson.

The ESPN Radio morning man ranked the eight remaining starting quarterbacks in the NFL playoffs and put Lawrence dead last.

“Trevor Lawrence at eight? I know Keyshawn Johnson is out there in California, but I want to party with Key because obviously, he was doing a little partying before this show, Harry,” Jason Fitz told his partner on Tuesday’s edition of Fitz & Harry. “There is no way Trevor Lawrence is the eighth-best quarterback out of eight left in the playoffs after doing what he did after the first quarter of that last game.”

Fitz noted that during the season people started calling Lawrence “Trevor Tangerines” for the daringness he continued to show even after things looked bad for him and the Jaguars. He said that on Saturday night, he should have been called “Trevor Watermelons”.

Jason Fitz acknowledged that it would be hard to rank anyone ahead of Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, Joe Burrow, and Jalen Hurts, which made up Keyshawn Johnson’s top four. But Fitz doesn’t think this is a matter of Lawrence being disrespected for being number eight, behind Brock Purdy, who began the season as the 49ers’ third-string quarterback, instead of number seven.

“Considering the whole body of work and the way that Trevor Lawrence has played since week nine, you wouldn’t have to press hard to put Daniel Jones below Trevor Lawrence.”

He added that Keyshawn Johnson is also being influenced by the uniform Trevor Lawrence wears.

“I think there’s a little element that speaks to the fact that we have a perception on certain organizations. I’m just saying — four interceptions or not — this is the analogy I keep making this week: If Trevor Lawrence had the bounceback game with the star in his helmet as the quarterback of the Dallas Cowboys, today the conversation would be like ‘Well, you can’t hold him down the whole game’.”

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Sports Radio News

Boomer Esiason: ManningCast Proves Peyton Manning Can Never Be a Coach

“He’s got no patience whatsoever.” 

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Don’t expect to see Peyton Manning on an NFL sideline. He may be one of the best quarterbacks the league has ever seen, but Manning isn’t cut out to be a coach according to Boomer Esiason.

On Tuesday morning, Esiason and the rest of the Boomer & Gio cast listened to highlights of the previous night’s ManningCast. They enjoyed the audio of Peyton Manning losing his temper after Cowboys kicker Brent Maher missed his third extra-point attempt of the night.

The clip, which has since gone viral, includes Manning asking if a kicker can be cut at halftime of a playoff game.

“This is why Peyton can’t coach,” Esiason said in response to the audio. “He’s got no patience whatsoever.” 

The chemistry and authenticity of Peyton and Eli is often cited as the appeal of the ManningCast. Esiason noted that was what is on display in moments the brothers cannot control.

Boomer Esiason was a guest on the week eight ManningCast, which featured his former team, — the Cincinnati Bengals — playing Cleveland Browns. Esiason said at the time that while it was a distracting way to try and follow a game, being a part of the show is a lot of fun. He echoed that praise Tuesday morning.

“Those things are really unbelievably done. I mean, they are funny.”

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