Sports Radio News
Strickland Rising In St. Louis
The playoffs are a busy time for Andy Strickland, who is in his 16th season of covering the Blues in a wide variety of capacities.
He currently is in his second season as a contributor to Fox Sports Midwest’s Blues pregame shows, and also is a sportscaster at KTRS (550 AM) plus he appears Friday mornings on Frank Cusumano’s show at WGNU (920 AM).
What with the Blues having a late game Thursday night and a 6:15 a.m. airtime looming Friday at KTRS, where he is filling in on the early shift while Jim Holder recovers from ankle surgery, he wasn’t counting on getting much sleep before his radio shift.
“It’s a quick turnaround, but I’ll be on adenine in the morning,’’ he said Thursday. “It will be a long day, because (later) I’ll be at the rink for practice as well as on Frank’s show. But it’s great.”
Strickland doesn’t mind all that, because he has made covering hockey his professional life — most likely to his detriment in a baseball-crazed market. He doesn’t dispute the notion that he has been pigeon-holed into being thought of only as “a hockey guy” by management at many stations.
“I definitely have been,’’ he said. “I think it’s my own fault because of my passion for hockey. I’ve been around the game for my entire life, growing up playing it and having coached with our Triple A St. Louis Blues — the top youth hockey organization in St. Louis — for 10 years. And I’ve really been into covering the NHL. It’s almost my own fault because it’s not a traditional hockey market, yet I put myself in that position years ago.”
Strickland, now 38, got his start in 2000-01 season when he was working behind the scenes at KMOX and impressed Dan McLaughlin — who without management’s approval let Strickland start coming on the air. McLaughlin, now FSM’s longtime Cardinals play-by-play broadcaster, was working weekends then at KMOX.
“I knew he loved hockey, I knew he wanted to be on the air,’’ McLaughlin recalled. “I also knew I probably wasn’t supposed to give him a particular segment, but I didn’t care because I knew he had a passion for it.”
Strickland put together prepackaged interviews and features, then after they aired he and McLaughlin would discuss them.
“It was all him,’’ McLaughlin said of giving him the opportunity. “He had earned it, worked hard. I thought it was a smart thing to do then, I think it’s a smart thing to do now. I think it’s the responsibility of people like myself or others who are on the air that if a guy shows initiative and is working hard, why wouldn’t we give him a chance?”
Strickland, a Parkway North High graduate who has worked in many low-profile jobs in local print, radio and TV, was pointed toward finding his niche. He eventually met with Tom Langmyer, who then ran KMOX. Langmyer asked him about his career goals.
“I said, ‘I want to be the best I can be at covering the National Hockey League, I think there’s a need for it in St. Louis,’” Strickland recalls saying. “There really wasn’t anyone (in local broadcasting) doing it, I felt there was a void. I thought I could jump on it. Here we are 16 years later, and I always think about that.”
He made a name for himself, especially in Canada, with his in-depth coverage of the Mike Danton case. Danton was a Blues player who was charged in 2004 with conspiracy to commit murder, leading to a wild saga that made international headlines.
“That vaulted me,’’ said Strickland, who still appears on hockey radio shows across North America.
He also became prolific with written hockey coverage, especially online, and wasn’t afraid to throw out things he had heard or got from anonymous sources — a more undisciplined blog style than mainstream media uses. But he has given that up because of his FSM ties.
“I really had to re-invent myself in terms of how I cover the St. Louis Blues because, now working for Fox there are certain expectations in terms of how you handle yourself around the rink,” he said. “So I stopped writing in general because I didn’t want to get myself in trouble, No. 1. And No. 2, I’m not covering the team the same way that I used to. Obviously 95 percent of the information that I gather I can no longer report. … I still do a lot of reporting, but I don’t always release that information.
“But I wouldn’t have it any other way, either,’’ added Strickland, who said Blues owner Tom Stillman has been instrumental in his job growth. “This has been a great opportunity for me and I’m trying to take advantage of it.”
Like most St. Louis radio sportscasters, Strickland has worked at numerous stations in the market and now does several shows at KTRS. But Strickland, a man of many roles, has a new favorite one.
“I really like doing the TV thing,’’ he said. “I knew I would like it, but I like it even more (than I thought I would). There’s a big difference of being on TV (as a guest) and doing TV (as a regular). The people have been great to me. I really enjoy this.”
Credit to STL Today who originally published this article
Jason Barrett is the owner and operator of Barrett Sports Media. Prior to launching BSM he served as a sports radio programmer, launching brands such as 95.7 The Game in San Francisco and 101 ESPN in St. Louis. He has also produced national shows for ESPN Radio including GameNight and the Dan Patrick Show. You can find him on Twitter @SportsRadioPD or reach him by email at JBarrett@sportsradiopd.com.
Sports Radio News
106.7 The Fan Extends Deal to Remain Washington Nationals Flagship
“We’re looking forward to continuing to serve as the home for everything Nats for the foreseeable future…”
106.7 The Fan has announced it has reached a multi-year extension with the Washington Nationals to remain as the MLB club’s radio flagship.
Nationals fans will continue to hear game broadcasts on the station, and those living inside the club’s broadcast territory will be able to stream the radio broadcasts on the Audacy app.
“Opening Day is finally here and we’re thrilled to celebrate the return of baseball season by extending our partnership with the Washington Nationals,” said Audacy Washington D.C. Senior Vice President and Market Manager Ivy Savoy-Smith. “We’re looking forward to continuing to serve as the home for everything Nats for the foreseeable future and give the team’s fans a front row seat to the action on the field and top storylines throughout the year.”
The Nationals have called 106.7 The Fan home since the 2011 season. Beyond game broadcasts, the station will welcome Nationals President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Mike Rizzo to The Sports Junkies every Wednesday at 9:00 AM throughout the season. The station will also air segments titled “Nats Insider”, hosted by broadcaster Dan Kolko that feature player interviews and features. Those segments will air all along the Nationals Radio Network.
“We couldn’t be happier to partner with Audacy in bringing Nationals fans even more of the interviews and exclusive access they love,” said Lerner Sports Group COO Alan H. Gottlieb. “From in-depth interviews with execs and top players, to off-the-field profiles and more Spanish and English bilingual content than ever before, Audacy offers a comprehensive look at our ball club from all angles.”
Sports Radio News
Todd Markiewicz Departing 97.1 The Fan
“He has left an indelible mark in the Columbus market and within the sports/talk radio world by building The Fan with excellent programming, dominant ratings, and overall market share.”
Longtime 97.1 The Fan Vice President and Market Manager Todd Markiewicz has announced he is leaving the sports radio station.
Markiewicz has been named the President of the 1870 Society, a Name, Image, and Likeness collective working with Ohio State athletics and Learfield to devise NIL strategy, fundraising, and logistics.
In an internal memo, Tegna Columbus President and General Manager John Cardenas credited Markiewicz for helping to establish the brand as “the powerhouse sports station in the country. He has left an indelible mark in the Columbus market and within the sports/talk radio world by building The Fan with excellent programming, dominant ratings, and overall market share.”
Markiewicz joined the station in 2010. Under his leadership, 97.1 The Fan has routinely ranked as the highest-rated station in the Columbus market.
His final day with the station will be Friday, May 26th.
Garrett Searight is the Editor of Barrett Sports Media and Barrett News Media. He previously was the Program Director and Afternoon Co-Host on 93.1 The Fan in Lima, OH. He is also a play-by-play announcer for TV and Radio broadcasts in Western Ohio. Reach him at email@example.com.
Sports Radio News
Gregg Giannotti: Doug Gottlieb Is ‘Using My Name’ To Deflect Blame From Himself
“I wasn’t there. This was 2013 before the incident. I wasn’t even there.”
Earlier this week, Doug Gottlieb revisited a gaffe he made on the set of CBS’s NCAA Tournament Selection Show a decade ago. On a set that included Greg Anthony, Charles Barkley, Greg Gumbel, and Kenny Smith, Gottlieb said that he was there to “provide the white man’s perspective.” Gottlieb owned that it was a poor attempt at humor, but Gregg Giannotti takes issue with the FOX Sports Radio host’s version of events that lead up to the televised misstep.
“If you’ll allow me, I’d like to clear my name for a little bit,” Giannotti said on Wednesday’s edition of Boomer and Gio on WFAN.
Gottlieb contends that he tried out a better rehearsed version of the joke in a number of other places before going on television and it was well-received. No one told him it was a bad idea or that if delivered in the wrong way, it could create problems. One of those places, according to Gottlieb, was CBS Sports Radio’s Gio & Jones.
One problem, the show did not exist in 2013.
“Here are my issues with this,” Gregg Giannotti said. “One, I wasn’t there. This was 2013 before the incident. I wasn’t even there. Two, he is placing blame now on whoever he told this to to stop him and say ‘Don’t do this on the set!’”.
Boomer Esiason, Giannotti’s WFAN partner said he can see how Gottlieb overlooked the reality that this joke would not land well with a general audience. Former athletes are used to joking with one another like this in locker rooms. Plus, being on a set with Barkley and Smith may have made Gottlieb think that he would get a little more leeway.
Esiason added that he can see how Gottlieb would assume Gio was there. The show on CBS Sports Radio that he was likely on was MoJo, which featured Brian Jones and Chris Moore. It became Gio & Jones in 2015 when Giannotti came to CBS Sports Radio from 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh, where worked in 2013. More surprising to Esiason was the Gottlieb wanted to talk about this a decade after it happened.
“He’s still hanging on this,” Giannotti answered. “The issue I have is that he is using me, saying that he tried it out on me and that I found it hilarious but I should have stopped him from saying the joke when I wasn’t even part of this. I was talking about the god damn Penguins!”