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Under The Radar in Sports Radio – 7/18/16

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The sports radio world has been busy lately and if you don’t keep your eyes open you could miss something. Not to worry though, we’ve got you covered with this week’s installment of ‘Under The Radar’. A reminder, if you have a news tip to share you can send it along to JBarrett@hvy.tcp.mybluehost.me.

  • The spring book in Philadelphia saw 97.5 The Fanatic defeat WIP yet again. The Fanatic won the Men 25-54 battle M-F 6a-7p, M-SU 6a-Mid, as well as in middays (Harry and Rob), early evenings (DeCamara), and in afternoon drive where Mike Missanelli has taken a commanding lead over the past few months over Josh Innes. WIP did win the head to head matchup in mornings, and in evenings (7p-12a) which is when they feature Phillies baseball.
  • In Dallas, The Ticket is on a major ratings roll with Men 25-54. The radio station saw all of its key weekday shows record double digit 1st place finishes, led by the Musers who were above a 14 share in mornings. The station was also 1st M-F 6a-7p and M-SU 6a-Mid. Jeff Catlin and his crew are knocking it out of the park in the money demo and building a strong case as one of the top sports radio brands of 2016. Meanwhile, 105.3 The Fan also enjoyed a successful month. The station was 3rd overall M-SU 6a-Mid, and 5th in prime M-F 6a-7p. Ben and Skin finished 3rd in afternoon, G-Bag Nation was 5th in midday and Shan & RJ were 7th in mornings. The story is even stronger for The Fan with Men 18-34. They defeat The Ticket head to head in most categories. One thing is for certain right now in Dallas, advertisers can’t go wrong in investing in either one of these brands.
  • After ending a spectacular run with ESPN last September, Colin Cowherd has been working hard to establish his program under the FOX Sports Radio, Premiere Radio Networks umbrella. That hard work is starting to pay dividends as FSR has announced that Cowherd’s program has now grown 100 affiliates strong. Premiere Networks President Julie Talbott says “The reaction to Colin’s show over the past 10 months has been incredible – we’ve surpassed every goal we set for the first year of the program. The rapid success of The Herd is a testament to Colin’s unique voice in the world of sports media and his ability to engage millions of fans across numerous platforms.  We look forward to reaching many more milestones together.”
  • Gow Media is giving its Yahoo Sports Radio network an identity change. The company will rebrand itself as SB Nation Radio, starting August 1st. It’s part of a new partnership with VOX Media. Gow Media had operated as Yahoo Sports Radio since August of 2011. The Yahoo company is currently up for sale. CEO David Gow tells BSM that SB Nation reporters will make appearances on the radio network, and the goal is for the two companies to work together to create more exposure for each of their respective platforms.
  • Last week we reported that Eric Dickerson had talked to the Los Angeles Rams about becoming their radio analyst but the two sides could not reach an agreement. We were told the two parties were divided over compensation, leading the running back to explore an opportunity with AM 570 LA Sports Radio, and the team to take a look at Jim Everett, Maurice Jones-Drew, and Jerome Bettis as potential analyst candidates. Then a story came out on Friday stating that Dickerson would take the position with the Rams after all. One source I spoke to said “The Rams have said one thing and done another over the past few months so nobody is sure at this point. They’ve told talent they were in the team’s plans only to learn through other channels that they weren’t. The communication has not been good, and it has to be extremely frustrating for their new play by play partners and advertisers.” No official deal with Dickerson has been announced but that doesn’t mean one won’t be. For now I’m going to take a few extra Advil and let others have fun sorting out the mess.
  • KNBR 1050 has a brand new Director of Content. Program Director Jeremiah Crowe has added former colleague Daniel Ogden who recently left 95.7 The Game. Ogden will be tasked with helping strengthen the KNBR 1050 brand and producing a new morning show. He starts in his new role on Monday July 18th.
  • Congratulations is in order for Scott Masteller and the folks at Hearst broadcasting in Baltimore. The company’s news talk station WBAL has reached an agreement with the Baltimore Ravens to continue serving as the team’s radio home for six more seasons.
  • ESPN Memphis 92.9FM is doubling up its football presence this NFL season. The station confirmed last week that it will become the Memphis radio home for the Tennessee Titans AND the Dallas Cowboys.
  • Matt & Scot, WJOX in Birmingham’s evening show has been cancelled. The duo were with JOX for the past 3.5 years and made the move to Alabama after showing promise in a PT role with The Ticket in Dallas. Scot plans to stay in town despite the setback. Matt is open to relocating if that’s what it takes to land his next opportunity. Cumulus Birmingham Market Manager David Walls says “Those guys are a class act, and I want to thank them for 3½ good years. We’re just going to take the station in a new direction.”
  • In Minneapolis, Andrew Krammer announced via Twitter that he’s leaving ESPN Twin-Cities (ESPN 1500AM) to join the Minneapolis Star-Tribune as a Vikings reporter.
  • Craig Hoffman has landed on his feet after being let go months ago by ESPN 980 in Washington D.C. Hoffman is joining 980’s rival 106.7 The Fan in a PT role. He’ll also be doing fill-in work for Ryan Maguire at WQAM in Miami and for Steve Moore at KMOX in St. Louis.
  • Ted Sobel has joined Fox Sports Radio in PT update anchor role. He’ll also be contributing as a studio host this football season to Sports Radio USA‘s NFL and College Football broadcasts.

Sports Radio News

Boomer & Gio: Why Does New York Post’s Premium Sports Site Exist?

“The stuff that is Post Sports+ I wouldn’t touch with somebody else’s eyes.”

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With the departure of Steve Somers from WFAN, along with the implementation of new premium subscription services, such as The Athletic and ESPN+, WFAN welcomed sports media columnist for The New York Post Andrew Marchand to the program to talk about the latest happenings across the industry. The conversation centered around a foray into the concept of “Post Sports+,” a new paid subscription service being offered by The New York Post which is being branded as “A whole new ball game for The Best Sports in Town.” Many of Marchand’s columns about the latest news in sports media are available to read for free on The New York Post website, and he often tweets about the latest news in the industry on his own personal Twitter page, making his role within the service seem, at least to the hosts of Boomer and Gio, confounding.

“I read the New York Post sports section every day,” said Gregg Gianotti. “I think it’s some of the best reporting that we have in the City… I’m a guy who is consuming your stuff every single day. The stuff that is Post Sports+ I wouldn’t touch with somebody else’s eyes… If you’re going to do Post Sports+, why not put the good stuff behind the paywall?”

Marchand explained the strategy being enacted by The New York Post to augment its revenue stream.

“I think what we’re doing is more additive,” said Marchand. “[For] people that have read the Post online previously, nothing’s changed. If you like sports media, I’m now doing a Monday newsletter all about sports media [where] I’m trying to give you more in terms of inside the business. That’s extra, and part of your monthly subscription… Obviously, what we’re trying to do is add revenue, but do it without taking that core business where we’re getting millions of people every day who come to the website.”

Marchand continued to elaborate on the strategy when pressed by Giannotti regarding just who this subscription service was appealing to, ostensibly positing that it is an effort to ensure that The New York Post stays around for another 220 years.

“You’re not getting everybody,” elucidated Marchand. “That’s not how a subscription works. If you get one out of 10 people, then you have a chance at success. Because of the digital world, [distribution] has changed. Back in the day, The New York Post could only reach as far as the trucks would drive. Now [with] distribution, you can reach around the world. I don’t know our demographics of Post Sports+, but in theory, when you look at a subscription site, you get a certain amount that’s additive revenue to The New York Post, and that’s the idea behind it.”

Show co-host and former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiason then chimed in on the discussion, discerning what he does when WFAN asks him to participate in extra station activities, such as meeting with sponsors, in a lighthearted exchange.

“I wouldn’t really do a lot,” said Esiason. “I used to do a lot. No more — I just tell them to go eff off and leave me alone… No, I’m just kidding.”

“That might have worked with [Mark] Chernoff, but is that going to work with Spike Eskin?,” questioned Marchand, generating laughter in the studios at 345 Hudson St.

Esiason then spoke about the burden it is for him to be bothered by multiple subscription services from The New York Post; that is, having to subscribe to both the paper itself and Post Sports+ to get a full plethora of stories. He believes the paper is making a mistake in this regard, and, as a writer, Marchand agrees.

“I’ve asked about that because I actually agree with you on that one,” said Marchand. “I’ve been told that they’re working on that. I tend to agree that there should be some sort of deal there — [maybe] if you’re paying for The New York Post app, maybe you get Post Sports+?”

Whatever the future holds for Post Sports+, Marchand figures to be covering the world of sports media across multiple platforms, aligning with the approach many sectors of traditional and digital media are beginning to take in producing and distributing their content to the largest audience possible.

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Sports Radio News

Nick Cattles Named PD, Host At KHTK In Sacramento

“I couldn’t be happier or more excited to join a brand with such a rich tradition.”

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Nick Cattles is trading the Atlantic Ocean for the Pacific. The Virginia Beach host has been named the new program director and afternoon drive host at Sports Radio KHTK in Sacramento.

The move to northern California signals the end of Nick’s time with ESPN Radio 94.1. Cattles enjoyed two stints with the Max Media radio station, separated by two different opportunities in Boston with 98.5 The Sports Hub. Cattles had been ESPN Radio 94.1’s afternoon drive host since 2017. Over the past few years Cattles additionally hosted on a part-time basis for WEEI and the ESPN Radio network.

“I couldn’t be happier or more excited to join a brand with such rich tradition,” Cattles said in a press release. “I look forward to this challenge and doing whatever I can to make sure KHTK remains the king of sports talk in Sacramento.”

Jason Ross, who currently serves as the afternoon host and PD of KHTK, will remain with the station. He also will continue to be heard as the radio voice of both Sacramento State and the Sacramento Kings.

“The Sports Programming team at Bonneville International has had our eye on Nick for a while and we couldn’t be more excited that he will be joining our team in Sacramento to lead KHTK,” Chad Rufer, Group Director of Programming for Bonneville Sacramento said in a press release.

Cattles is part of the BSM Member Directory and learned of KHTK’s opening through BSM.

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Sports Radio News

710 ESPN LA To Host Live Awards Show During Super Bowl Week

The evening includes dinner and show, cocktails with a cash bar, and presentation of the 710 Mandy Awards as voted on by 710 ESPN listeners.

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ESPN 710 in Los Angeles is hosting its first ever award show during “Superweek” on February 6th.

The 710 Mandy Awards will take place at Quiet Cannon in Montebello, California. Some of the awards that will be up for grabs will be host of the year, show of the year, producer of the year, and more. The host of the event will be former 710 ESPN LA co-host Keyshawn Johnson, who is now with ESPN Radio’s Keyshawn, JWill, and Max.

Here is a sneak peak of some of what the ESPN Los Angeles team has in store for the inaugural event.

The evening includes dinner and show, cocktails with a cash bar, and presentation of the 710 Mandy Awards as voted on by 710 ESPN listeners.

A live version of “Family Feud” will also be played featuring the 710 hosts and for the first time ever, “Ask Sli” where a live audience can ask host of the Travis and Sliwa show Allen Sliwa anything they want.

Tickets can be purchased for only $25 with the dinner included for the event in what makes for a very fun and enjoyable event for a fraction of what it would normally cost to go to an event of this magnitude.

Live coverage of the event will be across 710 ESPN Los Angeles’s social media platforms.

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