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Under The Radar – June 26, 2017

Jason Barrett

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Another full week of sports radio activity for your personal enjoyment. If you have personal or station news to share or a press release or details about an upcoming promotion, please send it via email to JBarrett@hvy.tcp.mybluehost.me.

Before we dive into this week’s stories, a quick update on the Barrett Sports Media Podcast. A number of you have inquired if it’ll be returning. Plans are for it to return in the next few weeks. As I alluded to during my last episode with Freddie Coleman, I had a health scare in May (luckily it turned out not to be serious) and was told by doctors to reduce my workload. My first priority is to assist my clients so that meant having to scale back some of my writing and the podcasts. Now that things are back on track I’m looking forward to bringing you some fresh material. Stay tuned for announcements of upcoming guests. If you work in the industry and wish to be considered for a future appearance please email me.

Now here’s this week’s news!

The clock may be ticking on Mike Francesa‘s final run with WFAN, but he isn’t going out silently. First, he had a heated verbal exchange with Brandon Tierney after a NY Post article profiled Tierney and his lack of interest in WFAN‘s afternoon drive slot. Then he exchanged a few words with morning host Craig Carton in an article in Newsday, one which Carton’s partner Boomer Esiasion took exception to. Now the NY Post reports that Francesa got into another verbal spat, this time with PD Mark Chernoff. According to the article, Francesa blamed Chernoff for losing in the ratings to Michael Kay. Given Chernoff’s history of going to bat for Mike, that sounds like sour grapes on Francesa’s part. If more develops on this story we’ll pass it along.

Congratulations is well deserved in Tampa where John Mamola has been officially named Program Director of 620 WDAE. Mamola has been with the station since February 2011 and had served as Assistant Program Director . Former PD Doug Hamand left in January 2016. Since then, Mamola has led the station as its interim PD. It’s good to see his hard work and results get recognized.

Speaking of WDAE, congratulations to midday host Tom Krasniqi who recently celebrated his 5 year anniversary with the station. T-Kras as he’s known works opposite Ronnie “Night Train” Lane weekdays from 9a-12p ET. Click here for more details about their show.

98.5 The Sports Hub may be unsure of who its future owner is but that isn’t stopping the Boston sports radio station from tackling important business issues. The Hub has announced that it has reached a new multi-year agreement with the Boston Bruins to continue serving as the team’s radio broadcasting partner. The Bruins have aired their games on the radio station since the 2009-10 season.

Longtime Washington D.C. personality Andy Pollin is invading the podcasting space according to the Washington Post. The popular host will debut his new weekly program on Monday July 3rd. Pollin will record the show in front of a live audience at the Chatter studio, the home of Tony Kornheiser‘s podcast, and be joined on site by a big-name local sports guest. The show is expected to run between 50-70 minutes.

WIP talk show host Glen Macnow is hosting a sports movie night in Philadelphia to help raise money for the Liberty Museum’s “Young Heroes Program“. The event will feature a cast of popular local personalities including Hall of Fame writer and WIP host Ray Didinger, Eagles radio voice Merrill Reese, former Flyers left wing Brian Propp and Saint Joe’s basketball coach Phil Martelli. Tickets are $50 and can be purchased by clicking here.

In Dallas, Mark Elfenbein is doing some additional hosting for ESPN 103.3. He’s sitting in for Dennis and Cowlishaw during the afternoon this week, and will also be on the station on Monday July 3rd. Former Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle and former Oklahoma City sports radio host Tony Casillas will work with Elfenbein on the 3rd. Dallas Mavericks play by play voice Chuck Cooperstein is in with Elfenbein this afternoon.

It took place a few weeks ago but is worth noting that 104.9 The Horn have installed a new midday show. Trey Elling and Brad Kellner have been given the reigns weekdays from 11a-1p CT. For more information on the show click here.

WBBL in Grand Rapids are hosting their annual Field of Dreams game on July 20th. The event gives 20 listeners an opportunity to play in a baseball game at Fifth Third ballpark with on-air hosts Bill Simonson and Eric Zane. 9 of those 20 listeners will gain an additional opportunity to play at Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers. For more details on the promotion click here.

Capitol Broadcasting in Raleigh have signed Erroll Reese and Kevin McClendon to contract extensions. The duo began hosting the program “The Sports Shop with Reese and KMac” five years ago on Buzz Sports Radio on the weekends. They then moved to middays two years ago, and just recently finished their first year in morning drive. Congrats to all involved.

In Vancouver, The Province reports that all signs point to Satiar Shah being part of the lineup at SportsNet 650. Shah had been working as a producer and on-air contributor for the Bro Jake Show on TSN 1040.

Meanwhile, Shah’s former station (TSN 1040) have added a new Vancouver Canucks reporter. Jeff Paterson has confirmed he’s joining the station and will report on the team at home and on the road.

In the writing world, Jordan Schultz has announced that he’s signed on full-time with Yahoo Sports.

Also, Ari Wasserman is exiting Cleveland.com to become the new Ohio State beat writer for The Athletic. He starts his new position on July 24th.

Sports Radio News

SURVEY: 16.9% of All Sports Radio Listeners Are Streaming

The survey found that in May 2022, 16.9% of sports talk radio’s audience tunes in via the station’s online stream. That news comes as Nielsen reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.

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Streaming Radio

According to Nielsen, All Sports radio stations are the third-most streamed spoken word format, just behind Talk/Personality and News/Talk/Info. The trend is continuing to show that streaming is on the uptick.

The survey found that in May 2022, 16.9% of sports talk radio’s audience tunes in via the station’s online stream. That news comes as Nielson reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.

Nielsen notes that in the 45 PPM markets they are grabbing data from and the 4,800+ stations that stream in those markets, just 30% of them are encoded. That encoding allows for Nielsen to accurately measure the streams. They used the listener data from 1,500 stations across the U.S., in its latest report, AM/FM Radio Streaming Growth in PPM Markets

The survey also showed that streaming levels differ widely by radio format. Spoken word formats display strong streaming listenership (Talk/Personality: 31.2%, News/Talk/Info: 19.1%, All Sports: 16.9%). In fact, Nielsen found that 1/3 of all AM/FM streaming in PPM markets is to spoken word formats.

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Sports Radio News

New Study Finds Listeners to MLB on Radio Are Willing to Spend

More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team… 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.

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MLB Radio

When it comes to advertiser’s attempting to reach an affluent and engaged audience, sports talk radio might have a whale on their hands. Major League Baseball play-by-play features an audience that has money and has no problems spending it.

In a recent MRI-Simmons study, data shows that consumers who listen to MLB broadcasts on the radio are the perfect audience for sports marketers. According to the analysis, done by Katz Radio Group, nearly two thirds (62%) of those surveyed consider themselves “super fans” of baseball. That number is 58% higher than the average.

Radio Listeners to MLB

Those “super fans” are willing to spend to support their team, as well. More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team. Those fans are also far more willing to make the trip to see their team. The study found that 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.

The news continues getting better for advertisers. Continued analysis reveals that 66% of listeners are currently employed and have a median household income greater than $106,000.

Listeners to MLB games on the radio are also 34% more likely to place a sports bet and 106% more likely to be a participant in fantasy baseball.

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Sports Radio News

Jeff Dean Signs Off At ESPN Tucson for The Final Time

Dean said on Facebook: “…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”

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Jeff Dean Show

Fans will no longer be able to tune into ESPN Tucson and hear Jeff Dean hosting his show. Friday morning was his last show, according to his Facebook and Twitter pages.

The Jeff Dean Show had been airing from 7-9a MT weekday mornings. Dean took to social media to relay the news and the reason behind him stepping away from the microphone. Dean said on Facebook:

“This morning I signed off from my radio show on ESPN Tucson for the final time. I have been devoting too much of my life and my time to working multiple jobs…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”

Jeff Dean Facebook

Dean went on to emphasize that he isn’t stepping away from ESPN Tucson, he’s just taking himself off the air. He also added that “gladly, I will be continuing my position as PA announcer of University of Arizona Football and Men’s basketball.”

Dean would also go onto Twitter to add even further context for his self-removal from the ESPN Tucson airwaves. He added, “It’s not a decision I arrived at hastily, as it’s been a 6 month mental grind to make the ultimate decision that had to be made, and I’m not particularly happy about it, but I have to put my health first, we all do, and make sure we’re around long enough to enjoy life”.

Dean had been ESPN Tucson’s morning host since November 2019.

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