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Missanelli Discusses Sports Radio

Jason Barrett

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“What’s It Like To…” is a series that looks inside the worlds of extreme sports, professional athletics, and sports careers.

Most women don’t listen to sports talk radio, and I was one of them. As I became more obsessed with the athletics of football, however, I wanted to understand the game better. Why would the defense still make a defenseless receiver hit, when the penalties are now so high? Why would Brady deflate footballs when his team really doesn’t need the advantage gained by cheating? When Marcus Mariota still hadn’t signed with the Titans, was that a glimmer of hope that he might come to Philly?

None of my friends and colleague wanted to talk about these finer points of football, so I started looking elsewhere. When I found the afternoon show on 97.5 The Fanatic, I was hooked. The host Mike Missanelli obviously knows sports. What’s more unusual is that his show isn’t one guy yelling at some other guy. He’s respectful to those who call in, quickly zeroes in on the point of their call, and insists that callers support their view or he will point out the errors in their thinking.

In addition to sports talk, what I love about the show is Mike’s discussions about other subjects – for example, race, and relationships between men and women. Callers seek advice, (“Can I give my girlfriend just one gift if her birthday is near Valentine’s Day?”) and ask for rulings on potential “violations”, (“Is it still ok to wear a Shady McCoy jersey?”). And my most favorite part is the banter between Mike and his producer – it can be like the best Seinfeld episode, (“What’s the best scent for your bathroom’s hand soap?”).

Mike Missanelli began his sports talk radio career in 1992, and has hosted both locally and at ESPN in New York City. He’s been the host of the Mike Missanelli Show, 97.5 FM The Fanatic, since 2008. He’s analyzed sports in many TV positions, and prior to radio and TV, worked in newspapers for 15 years, including 10 years with the Philadelphia Inquirer. He got his Journalism degree from Penn State, and is a graduate of Widener Law School, admitted to the PA Bar in 1986.

Q: Best thing about being a sports talk host?

The freshness of daily conversation. Philadelphia is the best sports talk town in the nation. And being able to engage fans live and interactive each day is a wonderful experience. There is always a fresh take and a fresh angle evident in a sports crazed town like Philadelphia.

Q: Most difficult thing about being a sports talk host?

There’s nothing really difficult about being a sports talk host except when there is a dearth of conversation about sports. We just went through perhaps the most barren period in my sports talk career following the Eagles season. The Sixers and Flyers had non exciting seasons, and we were left without ANY baseball talk for an entire summer because of the poor state of the Phillies. That really tests the limits of the host’s creativity to talk about other subjects.

Q: Besides understanding sports, what top 3 qualities make a successful sports talk host?

The ability to handle both sides of an argument is the most important aspect. Bringing both sides into an argument makes it a much better and more interesting conversation. My law school training was essential for that. Also, I believe that some athletic experience gives you an edge when talking about the game. You can relate to certain aspects of sports better than someone who has never played. I was a three sport high school athlete and a varsity baseball player at Penn State, which means I was tutored in the finer arts of the game by some really good coaches. You also have to have a bit of ham in you. After all, you are trying to entertain people for four hours as well as educate them.

Q: How do you prepare for shows?

My preparation begins in the morning. I still read the newspaper, but I have a series of websites that I will consult in order to formulate talking points for the show. Watching ESPN sports center and CSN are essential. I will try to develop a hub, a main topic of the day, then spin off into various other topics, which may include aspects of modern culture or current events that have nothing to do with sports. By the time I go to the office, I have done all my preparation. I read a show sheet prepared by my producer Jason Myrtetus, and consult with him on various other ideas we can implement on the show.

Q: If you were to have a show about any other topic, what would it be?

I’m a huge proponent of social discussion, especially racial issues. I treat my show sometimes as a town hall show where all opinions are welcome. I am flabbergasted by small-minded ideas on racial progress and I feel it is my duty to try to broaden some listeners’ horizons in those matters.

Credit to Philly.com who originally published this article

 

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Kirk Minihane: The Rich Shertenlieb Show on WZLX ‘Is a Disaster’

“It would be like me going somewhere and doing a radio show about foreign languages or about religion. It doesn’t make any sense.”

Barrett Sports Media

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Screengrabs of Kirk Minihane and Rich Shertenlieb
Screengrabs from Barstool Sports and CBS Boston

As one could most likely guess, former WEEI Boston sports radio talker Kirk Minihane is no fan of former 98.5 The Sports Hub host Rich Shertenlieb’s new morning show on classic rock station 100.7 WZLX.

Minihane explained the situation to his audience which led to Shertenlieb starting a new show on a music station, thus being the third sports morning show in the market. Minihane had said back in March his sources were telling him Shertenlieb would be doing the afternoon show on WEEI. That, obviously, did not turn out to be the case.

“Rich Shertenlieb is a radio producer, he shouldn’t be on the air, he’s a bits guy,” said Minihane.

The show played audio of the very beginning of Shertenlieb’s debut show which had some technical problems where music was playing over a sports report.

“This sounds like a college radio station,” Minihane said. “What the fu** is this? This is the beginning of Rich Shertenlieb saying ‘Hey, I’m going to war with you Fred Toucher? I’m getting paid to do a morning show in Boston. What is this?”

Minihane was even more harsh on some of the cast members Shertenlieb and the station have assembled, calling one of them “a moron” and saying another is “an awful person, terrible on the air.” “Everybody turned him down,” Minihane said before he declared, “That show is dead. That show has no chance. It is a disaster…It would be like me going somewhere and doing a radio show about foreign languages or about religion. It doesn’t make any sense.”

Minihane would later add, “They’re going to listen to that for a day and say ‘Oh this is like when Fred wasn’t here, and Rich had his own little planet.”

Another audio clip was played of Fred Toucher taking a shot at Shertenlieb on his morning show. To show he is an equal opportunity critic, Minihane offered about the clip from 98.5 The Sports Hub, “Hardy doesn’t work on that show. He feels uncomfortable. You can tell he doesn’t feel comfortable. What a feeling it’s gotta be if you’re Fred and you know that’s the show [you’re going up against].”

After discussing what he would do if he were to be hosting the third sports morning show in the market and how he would win the timeslot, Minihane said, “I would honestly rather blow my fu**ing brains out than sit with Ted Johnson and Charlotte Wilder and pretend to care about playing the Timberwolves or the Mavericks.”

Minihane later added his prediction for the show. “A year from now, the Rich Shertenlieb morning show will be 6th or 7th or 8th in the ratings. That’s a disaster.”

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Anthony Lima: Stephen A. Smith’s ‘Clown Show’ Brought More Interest to Watching Knicks-Pacers

“Do you think that’s maybe how ESPN could sleep at night, knowing that they might be building up interest in the game?”

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Photos of Anthony Lima and Stephen A. Smith

Social media was running wild over this past weekend about the way ESPN provided lopsided coverage of the Knicks-Pacers Game 7 in their second round. Earlier this week, Dan Patrick addressed the subject on The Dan Patrick Show, clips of which were played by Ken Carman and Anthony Lima on 92.3 The Fan in Cleveland.

Patrick said he was “embarrassed for ESPN” about the slanted coverage. He added, “I don’t need a Stephen A. Smith arrival video, I don’t need a pep talk with him and Spike Lee. He doesn’t work for the Knicks; he works for ESPN. I was really surprised, and I didn’t care who won but after that I was rooting for the Pacers.”

Adding to what Patrick said Lima commented, “I saw Stephen A. Smith arriving like he was a wing for the New York Knicks. I mean that’s the only way I can say it. To me it was typical Stephen A. Smith stuff. I’m entertained by Stephen A. Smith”

As it related to the unbalanced coverage between the larger market Knicks and the smaller market Pacers, Lima said, “I think they’ve gone too far with the Knicks thing.”

He then wondered if the coverage was actually something ESPN might have wanted, trying to generate more interest in keeping people around to watch the game. “I do wonder though…Dan Patrick said, ‘I didn’t have any rooting interest until I saw that and then I was rooting for the Pacers,’ Lima said. “…Do you think that’s maybe how ESPN could sleep at night, knowing that they might be building up interest in the game? … Now, after seeing Stephen A. and that song and dance and him do the clown show and him play this character, that it made people more interested in watching the game and having that kind of buy in? … Now all of a sudden you have Pacers fans that weren’t Pacers fans before the broadcast. That is what the networks want to do, they do want to generate some emotional tie in.”

Lima continued, “Showing Stephen A. before the game, I thought was hilarious. But then, on the set, it was halftime, the Knicks were getting steamrolled…they go to the halftime show and Stephen A. is apoplectic, and then Michael Wilbon…it almost sounded like he was rooting for the Knicks. You just can’t have everybody rooting for the Knicks on your show.”

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SiriusXM Announces Broadcast Plans for 108th Indy 500

SiriusXM will co-sponsor three cars from the Meyer Shank Racing Team.

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SiriusXM INDYCAR Nation
(Illustration) | SiriusXM INDYCAR Nation Logo – Courtesy: SiriusXM | Indianapolis Motor Speedway – Courtesy: VisitIndy

SiriusXM has announced programming for the 108th running of the Indianapolis 500, which will take place on Sunday, May 26 with a scheduled green flag drop at 12:45 p.m. EST. As the field of 33 cars gets set to compete for the coveted Borg-Warner Trophy, SiriusXM will bring consumers wall-to-wall coverage from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Pre-race coverage will commence at 11 a.m. EST on SiriusXM INDYCAR Nation, channel No. 218, along with NBC Sports Audio on SiriusXM channel No. 85. Both platforms are available to subscribers nationwide both in their motor vehicles and on the SiriusXM App.

The broadcast outlet will air the live call of the race on Sunday, along with live coverage of the Indianapolis 500 Miller Lite Carb Day Practice session on Friday at 11 a.m. EST. After the practice session concludes, six-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES race winner and 11-time Indianapolis 500 race participant James Hinchcliffe will host his podcast, Off Track with Hinch and Rossi, live outside the Pagoda at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Hinchcliffe’s co-host, Alexander Rossi, is part of the field within Sunday’s race. Leading up to the race, SiriusXM will also have a “Greatest Day in Motorsports” page on its app to access coverage for the Indianapolis 500 race and practices, along with driver interviews from media day and additional content.

SiriusXM will co-sponsor three cars from the Meyer Shank Racing Team in the Indy 500 field. The company colors will be present on car No. 60 (Felix Rosenqvist), No. 66 (Tom Blomqvist) and No. 06 (Helio Castroneves). Castroneves is racing to become the first driver to win five Indianapolis 500 races. On the day after the race, Diplo’s Revolution on SiriusXM channel No. 53 will broadcast live from the Indy 500 Coors Light Snake Pit. The station will have live performances from Gryffin, Sullivan King and Timmy Trumpet.

SiriusXM is running a Listen Free event from May 23 to June 4, which allows everyone to hear the SiriusXM INDYCAR Nation channel and SiriusXM’s Indianapolis 500 coverage without a subscription.

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