Connect with us
blank

Sports Radio News

Falcons, 92.9 The Game Reach Deal

Jason Barrett

Published

on

blank

In an expected move, 92.9/The Game will become the official flagship station for the Atlanta Falcons.

The station was already an affiliate for the Falcons this past season.

While program director Terry Foxx declined to comment on the terms, a reliable source told me it was a three-year deal that will run through early 2018.  Foxx said the team plans to keep Wes Durham and Dave Archer as play-by-play broadcasters for the Falcons.

“We’re just happy to be able to have this great partnership,” Foxx said.

Back in 2011, Lincoln Financial had signed the Falcons to a four-year deal that engaged both its sports/talk station 790/The Zone and sister FM pop station Star 94.

But last year, after the Zone dumped all its local programming, Lincoln decided to make the Game an affiliate.

The move was essentially mutually beneficial for all parties.

For the Falcons, they need radio hosts pumping up the team and the Zone was no longer able to do that. This also gave Lincoln the ability to stop airing football games on Star 94, which chases after suburban moms, not male football fans. And the Game needed the team to bolster its credibility given its relatively new status and modest ratings.

The gambit worked for the Game. Ratings have improved significantly since the fall despite the fact the team failed to make the playoffs and finished 6-10. The Game has been beating the Fan for four consecutive months.

As a result, it came as no surprise the Game chose to stick with the Falcons. The only other logical option for the Falcons was 680/The Fan, which has a modest FM stick 93.7 that simulcasts the Fan. But 92.9/The Game has a more powerful FM signal that covers the entire metro Atlanta area.

My source said the Game paid significantly more than Lincoln had in its previous deal and wonders how the station could possibly make enough money from sponsors and advertising to cover costs. Presumably, CBS Radio, which owns the Game, decided the Falcons were a valuable enough “loss leader” to help draw people to the Game, even when the Falcons aren’t on air, using the “halo effect.” It also gives people who otherwise might not listen to the Game an excuse to check it out and hopefully stick around for its daily programming.

“From a revenue standpoint, it’s a challenge but there’s intrinsic value you can’t measure,” said Dave Mezsaros, a former general manager at Z93 and market manager at Cox Atlanta. He also worked at 790/The Zone for a few years before left radio a year ago. “When we were at WSB, we had the Braves for 10 years. We were willing to pay premiums to broadcast games because of the overall prestige. It opens up advertising opportunities that you otherwise might never get.”

David Dickey, who runs 680/the Fan, texted me this: “As I’ve said in the past… we do NOT do bad business deals.”

The Game has also been the Atlanta Hawks radio partner since August, 2013 and thanks in part to the rising fortunes of NBA’s hottest team had its best ratings book since its debut in October, 2012. And this month, the Hawks have been even better, riding a 17-game winning streak. Expect the Game’s monthly ratings to go up even more in January, once the numbers come out in two weeks.

When 92.9 was a rock station, it aired Falcons football games from 2004 through 2011. The Falcons at the time needed an FM stick and worked with the Zone as well to provide content while games weren’t going on.  But now 92.9 can promote and talk Falcons as much as it wants since it’s a 24/7 sports talk station.

Among the other valuable franchises in town, the Atlanta Braves and Georgia Tech football and basketball work with the Fan and UGA basketball and football is heard on News 95.5 and AM 750.

Credit to the AJC who originally published this article

Sports Radio News

Jonathan Zaslow No Longer With WQAM

An attempt to reach out to Zaslow for comment went unanswered.

blank

Published

on

blank

WQAM midday host Jonathan Zaslow is no longer with WQAM in Miami.

The radio station has removed his show from the website and references to him and his normal 10a-2p ET midday timeslot program have been scrubbed from the station website.

Zaslow tweeted at 5:19p ET confirming the news.

Whether or not this has any effect on his involvement with the Miami Heat broadcasts is unknown as of now.

Barry Jackson, a veteran journalist with the Miami Herald, reports that 790 The Ticket morning hosts Brendan Tobin and Leroy Hoard will move to that 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. WQAM slot during the week of Oct. 3.

In more station movement, Joe Rose’s WQAM morning show with Zach Krantz now will be simulcast on The Ticket, replacing the Tobin/Hoard program. Audacy, which owns both WQAM and The Ticket, also simulcast Marc Hochman’s and Channing Crowder’s afternoon show.

Zaslow had been with 790 the Ticket since 2004. He was transitioned from Audacy-owned 790 to sister station AM 560 Sports WQAM last October. During his tenure he has worked with a number of established local voices including Joy Taylor, Amber Wilson, Brett Romberg, and Brendan Tobin amongst others.

WQAM has gone thru a number of changes, including a rebranding effort to call the station “560 The Joe”. That ended last year with the station returning to the AM 560 Sports WQAM brand listeners were more familiar with. What they have planned next in Zaslow’s timeslot is unclear but local listeners will likely get some answers next week.

Continue Reading

Sports Radio News

Vanessa Richardson Named Houston Rockets Sideline Reporter, Paul Gallant to Host Solo on ESPN 97.5

Vanessa Richardson will be on the sidelines for the Houston Rockets and Paul Gallant will host solo show on ESPN 97.5.

blank

Published

on

Vanessa and Gallant

Changes are taking place in Houston sports media. First, the Houston Rockets will have a new television sideline reporter this season, and she’s a familiar name to Houston sports fans.

Vanessa Richardson, the now former co-host of ESPN 97.5’s Vanessa and Gallant, revealed that she will be on the sidelines for the NBA franchise covering the team for AT&T SportsNet Southwest.

She tweeted the news saying, “Elated to be the new Houston Rockets sideline reporter! I can’t wait to travel the country & share the stories of this dynamic team during 80+ games on AT&T SportsNet Southwest. I’ll continue to fill-in as a host/reporter for Astros broadcasts as well.”

Richardson’s co-host, Paul Gallant, tweeted that with Richardson leaving the show for the Rockets sideline gig, Vanessa and Gallant will become the Paul Gallant Show. The solo show led by Gallant begins Monday September 26th.

“We’re excited to have Paul host his own show”, said Todd Farquharson, General Manager of ESPN 97.5 & 92.5.  “He’s super creative, energetic, and likeable.  He’ll get the audience involved and have fun.”

Paul commented, “You know what I’ve always loved about sports talk radio?  That it’s interactive.  Whether through a phone call, text message, tweet or on Twitch, it’s the best place for sports fans to come together and celebrate…or vent.  And that’s what The Paul Gallant Show is going to be…Houston’s platform to talk about its teams. THE most interactive sports talk show in Houston.”

Continue Reading

Sports Radio News

Ken Carman: Al Michaels ‘Feels Untethered’ On Amazon Prime Video

“The thing that stuck out was Kirk Herbstreit ripping the elf,” said Carman. “Don’t be ripping Brownie the Elf, man.”

blank

Published

on

blank

The Cleveland Browns defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers during Thursday Night Football on Amazon Prime Video. 92.3 The Fan morning host Ken Carman applauded Al Michaels for his performance during the presentation.

“Al Michaels feels untethered for the first time. He’s not network television anymore and he can say whatever he wants. We interviewed him on the pregame show and I was nervous,” Carman said.

“He’s a legend,” co-host Anthony Lima added.

During the final play of the game, the Steelers fumbled a lateral into the endzone which the Browns recovered to make the final score 29-17. Michaels said “that may be meaningful to some of you. And you know who I mean”, alluding to people who had placed wagers on the game.

Carman, who hosts two-hours of pre-game coverage on the Browns Radio Network, continued to discuss how nervous he was interviewing Michaels. He also discussed how impressive Amazon’s behind-the-scenes production was, pointing out the only football broadcast with more cameras is the Super Bowl. More than 400 people work behind the scenes for Amazon Prime Video.

“The thing that stuck out was Kirk Herbstreit ripping the elf,” said Carman. “Don’t be ripping Brownie the Elf, man.”

Carman later said people angry that Michaels misspoke by saying the Pro Football Hall of Fame is “down I-71” instead of I-77 were unreasonable, and joked “Al Michaels hasn’t been on a highway in 20 years”.

Continue Reading
Advertisement blank
Advertisement blank

Barrett Media Writers

Copyright © 2021 Barrett Media.