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Radio Influence Adds ‘Yards & Stripes’ Podcast

Jason Barrett

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Radio Influence is stocking up on new podcast programs just in time for football season. The digital company has announced the addition of Yards and Stripes, hosted by ESPN Upstate host Price Atkinson. The new audio offering will debut on Wednesday August 16th.

Every Wednesday throughout the college football season, Atkinson will deliver a podcast dedicated to the programs of the three Service Academies. Each episode will include storytelling from special guests who either played, coached, or are affiliated with one of the service academies. In addition to weekly guests, Atkinson will hand out his game balls, answer questions from listeners, and close each episode with “Faces Of The Fallen,” a feature which will honor and remember one former Army, Navy, or Air Force student-athlete killed in the line of duty.

“Partnering with Price for ‘Yards And Stripes’ was a no brainer,” said Jerry Petuck, CEO of Radio Influence. “It’s an honor for us to be affiliated with a program that not only celebrates our soldiers but also gives them a chance to take a break away from the day’s realities and be entertained while rooting on their fellow soldiers on the gridiron. It’s the least we could do for everything they give for us. God bless them and their families.”

“College football at Army, Navy, and Air Force is unique, special, and different than anywhere else on Saturdays in the fall, which I learned with firsthand experience,” said Atkinson after working four years at the Naval Academy. “For only the second time in history, all three schools qualified for bowl games last year and both are poised for big seasons again in 2017. I’m fired up to equally feature and cover all three programs from the season’s start to its postseason conclusion on ‘Yards And Stripes.’ My hope and goal is not only to reach fans of the three teams but also veterans and their families from each branch as well as active duty military personnel serving here at home and overseas.”

Atkinson has worked for ESPN Upstate since April 2014, and also co-hosts the Clemson football postgame show on 93.3 The Planet. He’s an active member of the Football Writers Association of America and the United States Basketball Writers Association.

Sports Radio News

16.9% of All Sports Radio Listeners Are Streaming

The 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, 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 their 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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