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North To Host Bears Post-Game

Jason Barrett

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Veteran sports talk show personality Mike North will host a Chicago Bears postgame show this fall on WDRV FM 97.1, the Hubbard Radio classic hits station announced Friday.

Starting September 13, North will host “The Mike North Sunday Drive,” a three-hour live talk show after every Bears game. Throughout the season he’ll also call in on Fridays and Mondays to Pete McMurray and Dan McNeil’s morning show on The Drive.

“Timing for this show just feels right,” said Greg Solk, senior vice president of programming for Hubbard Radio. “All the football experts are predicting a rough year for our beloved Bears, so fans will want and need a place to sound off after the games. As The Drive continues our evolution into more of a Chicago lifestyle station, this is the perfect chance for us to experiment and bring in a superstar like Mike North. Mike is truly authentic — and he’s all Chicago.”

It’s the latest addition to the postgame program competition since the demise of Ed O’Bradovich and Doug Buffone’s celebrated show on CBS Radio sports/talk WSCR AM 670:

  • After Buffone died in April, O’Bradovich joined Tribune Media news/talk WGN AM 720, where he’ll host a post-game show with Dan Hampton and Glen Kozlowski.
  • The Score this week announced Olin Kreutz, James “Big Cat” Williams and Hub Arkush as hosts of its new postgame show.
  • CBS Radio all-news combo WBBM AM 780 and WCFS FM 105.9, home of Bears play-by-play, follows its broadcasts with locker room interviews with head coach John Fox and players. Then former Jay Hilgenberg and Jim Schwantz join Ron Gleason taking calls.
  • ESPN sports/talk WMVP AM 1000 features Steve “Mongo” McMichael, Jeff Dickerson, Fred Huebner and Ben Finfer after each game.

With listener loyalties and advertiser dollars up for grabs, North offers an unpredictable alternative among the crowd of Sunday afternoon talkers.

“I’m sort of like almost like Trump in this equation now,” North said, comparing himself to wild card Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. “The loudmouth is coming in. I think things are going to change a lot.”

The addition of a sports talk show on an unadulterated FM music station would have seemed unlikely until last March when The Drive hired McNeil to co-host its new morning show with McMurray. Given McNeil’s 30 years in sports radio, his presence has redefined the station and its appeal to men between 25 and 54 (where the show currently ranks third in the market).

“I’ve known Danny since 1992, and it warms my heart so see that we’re going to be back together again,” said North, who worked with McNeil at The Score and was its biggest star for 16 years until 2008. “Hopefully there will be many more things to come. But I’m very happy with my situation. I’m thrilled that I’ve landed at a reputable place with the arrow pointing up. I am absolutely ecstatic about this.”

There are no plans to team him with McNeil, but North isn’t ruling it out: “I’m going to try my best to talk him into doing some shows with me if he can. I think it would be great.”

North is keeping his day job as co-host of “Fox Sports Daybreak” with Andy Furman, which airs outside Chicago from 5 to 8 a.m. Monday through Friday on Fox Sports Radio.

Credit to Robert Feder who originally published this article

Sports Radio News

Vanessa Richardson Named New Houston Rockets Sideline Reporter

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

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Vanessa Richardson

The Houston Rockets will have a new television sideline reporter this season and it’s a familiar name in Houston sports talk radio.

Vanessa Richardson, the now former co-host of ESPN 97.5’s Vanessa and Gallant, announced 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 the extra news that Richardson would be leaving the show to pursue the Rockets gig full-time. It appears that Vanessa and Gallant will become the Paul Gallant Show.

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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.”

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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”.

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Sports Radio News

Boomer Esiason: Michael Kay ‘Swooping In’ On Stephen Nelson ‘Just Not Right’

During a remote broadcast, they asked fans in attendance if they wanted to see Kay in the booth Friday night, which resulted in a resounding no.

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Boomer Esiason

Much has been made about the potential of New York Yankees television play-by-play announcer Michael Kay announcing Friday Night Baseball on AppleTV+ while slugger Aaron Judge chases the franchise and American League record for home runs in a single season. During Boomer & Gio Friday morning, Boomer Esiason and Gregg Giannotti disagreed on whether Kay should have taken the gig from usual AppleTV+ announcer Stephen Nelson.

During a remote broadcast, they asked fans in attendance if they wanted to see Kay in the booth Friday night, which resulted in a resounding no.

“I bet he put that out there to see what the reaction would be,” Giannotti said of Kay’s comments that he would be “big-footing” Nelson by taking the assignment. “And the reaction was like that, and was like ‘You know, I’m kinda uncomfortable doing this. Maybe I shouldn’t do it’. And no one wanted to see it anyway.”

“They shouldn’t do it,” said Esiason of AppleTV+ allowing Kay to step in for Nelson.

“If the shoe was on the other foot, and let’s say it was Pete Alonso chasing this record and there was AppleTV for potentially 61 or 62, you’re telling me that you’d want a fella named (Stephen) Nelson over Gary Cohen? There’s no way in hell!”, Giannotti countered.

“I want what’s right,” Esiason said.

“AppleTV’s not right to begin with,” Giannotti replied.

“But Michael Kay swooping in on some kid named Nelson, that’s not right. That’s just not right. You just can’t do that!”, argued Esiason.

“Yeah, but the fact that it’s on AppleTV to begin with is annoying,” Giannotti concluded. “It’s just annoying.”

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