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Learfield Expands Aggies Network

Jason Barrett

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Concurrent with the 2015-16 collegiate athletic season kicking off, NM State fans will recognize numerous enhancements and upgrades to their radio listening experience as unveiled today by Learfield Sports, NM State Athletics’ multimedia rights partner.

Enhancements for radio listeners include Learfield securing KDSK 1240 AM/93.7 FM in Albuquerque as the new home for Aggie football, men’s basketball and coaches’ shows. Gallup’s KYVA 1230 AM also will air select football games, men’s basketball games and coaches’ shows. Additionally, football fans will hear brand-new, specially produced pre-game feature segments, coupled with live studio college football updates.

“One of Learfield Sports main strengths is their knowledge of radio and broadcast production as well as their ability to build strong statewide radio networks!” said NM State Director of Athletics Mario Moccia. “We asked them to deliver the Aggies across the entire state of New Mexico and in an unbelievably short period of time they have made great strides. While we are always looking at expanding (El Paso, northern New Mexico and Spanish language broadcasts) we are pleased with their strong start out of the gate. I am also pleased that our Olympic sports will receive coverage over the air as well which will continue the emphasis we place on their importance.”

Returning for his 36th year is NM State Hall of Famer Jack Nixon, who Learfield retained as the iconic ‘Voice of the Aggies’ handling play-by-play duties for football and men’s basketball. Fans will be able to hear Nixon’s calls on Aggie Sports Network, and all radio broadcasts will be streamed on the official athletic website, NMStateSports.com. This year’s flagship stations include 570 KWML-AM/104.5 K283CG-FM in Las Cruces (football, men’s basketball, coaches’ shows) and 91.5 KRUX-FM in Las Cruces (women’s basketball, volleyball, baseball, softball). Additionally, fans can hear the Aggies on 103.7 KNMZ-FM in Alamagordo (football, men’s basketball) and Carlsbad – 1240 KAMQ-AM (football, men’s basketball, coaches’ shows).

Beginning this fall, Learfield also introduces a new concept with affiliate partner KRUX-FM to benefit NM State students. As part of an initiative to create and feature student-generated content, the two parties will collaborate on an extensive program to train and provide students with opportunities for live radio play-by-play and color analyst experiences during select women’s basketball, volleyball, softball and baseball broadcasts.

“This is a wonderful profession that delivers a special enthusiasm to radio listeners during games, and I think it’s outstanding that Learfield Sports and KRUX are offering up this platform to future broadcasters,” said Nixon. “I have enjoyed sharing Aggie athletics and unforgettable moments over the airwaves for nearly four decades, and what a terrific hands-on opportunity this will be for the next generation of broadcasters and analysts.”

NM State students who are part of the Student Media department will be hired as broadcasts analysts and work closely with Learfield and 91.5 on the inaugural venture.

“We’re off and running with this partnership and couldn’t be more excited about what we have in store for fans this year,” said Chris Lahey, General Manager of NM State Sports Properties, Learfield’s local entity that oversees the Aggies’ rights.

Credit to New Mexico State’s website where this story was originally published

Sports Radio News

Jonathan Zaslow No Longer With WQAM

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

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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.

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.

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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.

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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.”

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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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