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Matt Jones Off KSR During Senate Race

“KSR will continue as a syndicated radio show with their regular co-hosts and contributors, less Matt Jones. Ryan Lemond, Drew Franklin and Shannon The Dude are expected to continue KSR for the interim.”

Brandon Contes

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Matt Jones is off Kentucky Sports Radio for the foreseeable future. The decision comes after a complaint from the Republican Party of Kentucky, accusing Jones of violating regulations by accepting campaign contributions from corporations. The owner, founder and host of Kentucky Sports Radio has been considering a run for senate as a Democratic candidate against Republican Mitch McConnell in 2020.

“Matt Jones must be held accountable immediately for misusing multiple platforms paid for by his corporate sponsors to unlawfully promote his US Senate candidacy,” said RPK Chairman J. McCauley Brown. “RPK’s complaint is an important first step in stopping Jones’ flagrant failure to comply with federal regulations, and we urge the FEC to deliver a swift and strong penalty.”

“The complaint is absolute nonsense and very disappointing from someone as powerful as McConnell,” Jones responded via his KSR blog. “I have said repeatedly in public and in filings with the FEC that I am not yet a candidate and I haven’t used the show to raise money or talk about my Exploratory Committee in any way. Nevertheless Senator McConnell has complained that having me on air is unfair and the man who speaks often about the importance of free speech and the exchange of public ideas has decided to cut off mine.”

In response to the Republican Party complaint, iHeartMedia, which owns KSR’s more than 35 affiliates, asked Jones to take a radio sabbatical. 

Jones planned on stepping away from KSR within the next few weeks to make a decision on whether or not he should run against McConnell, but the Republican Party complaint sends the radio host off-air sooner than expected. If Jones chooses not to run, he plans on returning to KSR and extending his partnership with iHeart.

This isn’t the first time politics got in the way of a media gig for Jones. During the summer, Jones was removed from his evening TV show on WLEX, Hey Kentucky! Part of the reason for Jones’ TV dismissal was a book he’s currently writing, Mitch, Please! How Mitch McConnell Sold Out Kentucky (and America too), taking aim at Kentucky’s Senior United States Senator as he bids for his seventh term. 

Last week, while the demise of Deadspin was in full force, many KSR listeners reached out to Jones, questioning if he could continue to intersect sports and politics.

“The difference is I still own KSR,” Jones responded while talking about Deadspin “Part of the reason 15 years later we haven’t sold [KSR] is because I don’t want, on that, to have a boss. I want to be able to do what we want to do. It’s the one thing we have where we can do whatever [we want].”

“As soon as you go to your corporate overlords, all of a sudden the entire thing that made that website what it was, they might take it away,” Jones added. One week later, Jones’ radio show was taken away from him. 

The situations are different, but Jones being forced to go radio silent one week after he expressed the importance of keeping the brand’s editorial control is interesting timing.

KSR will continue as a syndicated radio show with their regular co-hosts and contributors, less Matt Jones. Ryan Lemond, Drew Franklin and Shannon The Dude are expected to continue KSR for the interim. 

As Jones continues to ponder a run for Senate, another media member, former college football coach and ESPN analyst Tommy Tuberville is in the midst of a campaign. Tuberville entered the 2020 Republican primary for the U.S. Senate in Alabama earlier this year.

Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.

Sports Radio News

670 The Score Hosts Congratulate Mike Mulligan on Award From Loyola Chicago

“They’re giving me an award for correctly picking the Super Bowl on September 8th,” Mulligan joked.

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670 The Score morning host Mike Mulligan is being awarded the Father Finnegan Memorial Award from Loyola University Chicago this weekend, and some of his colleagues congratulated him on the air Friday morning.

The award is given “in recognition of outstanding humanitarianism and service to youth through athletics”. Mulligan — a 1984 graduate of Loyola University Chicago — will receive the award Saturday during the Loyola Athletics Hall of Fame ceremony during a game against George Mason.

“Tremendous award,” co-host David Haugh said. “Proud moment for the show. Proud moment for you family.”

“They’re giving me an award for correctly picking the Super Bowl on September 8th,” Mulligan joked.

“That is fantastic,” Laurence Holmes said, while his co-host, Dan Bernstein, continued to say “wow”. “Congratulations. You shouldn’t be embarrassed. You should be proud.”

“I’m being celebrated for being old,” Mully joked.

“That’s not what that award says,” countered Holmes. “It says something completely different.”

The Mully & Haugh host eventually admitted he was appreciative of the award bestowed upon him by his alma mater.

“It’s a good thing. I’m very moved by it. Sister Jean will be there,” Mully said. “She has a book coming out with — I think — Seth Davis.”

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Sports Radio News

Colin Cowherd: Tony Romo Regressing Because He Loves Golf

“I’ve always felt like Tony Romo is one of those guys — and we all have somebody in our social circle like this — he got the golf bug. He’s had it for 15 years.

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The performance of CBS Sports NFL analyst Tony Romo has been a hot-button topic in sports media circles, especially after a widely-regarded lackluster performance during the AFC Championship Game. Colin Cowherd believes he knows why Romo has regressed.

During an episode of The Colin Cowherd Podcast, the sports radio host claimed golf is the reason behind Romo’s regression.

“Romo wants to be on the Tour. He literally wants to be on the Tour,” Cowherd said. “And what’s the first thing Aaron Rodgers does in the off-season? He goes and golfs, he loves it. Both, by the way, great golfers, especially Romo. But I’ve always felt like Tony Romo is one of those guys — and we all have somebody in our social circle like this — he got the golf bug. He’s had it for 15 years.

“Tony wants to be on the PGA Tour — but he likes the paycheck from CBS.”

Cowherd also added he hasn’t hired potential employees in the past if they told him they loved golf during the interview process, saying he has a theory that as men age they “get addicted to golf”.

“They’re on PGATour.com, they’re putting in the backyard, they’re thinking about it at work, they’re scheduling a trip to Scotland and they lose sight of their other job,” Cowherd said.

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Sports Radio News

ESPN Radio Adds Lakers Games As LeBron James Nears Scoring Record

“As of Friday, February 3, LeBron James is 63 points away from Abdul-Jabbar’s 38,387 career points.”

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The NBA’s all-time scoring record has stood for a long time. Kareem Abdul-Jabar, the current record holder, retired in 1989. LeBron James is on the verge of overtaking him though, and ESPN Radio wants to make sure it is part of history when it happens.

ESPN Radio has added two upcoming Lakers games to its schedule. The network will carry the national feeds of games on February 7 and 9. The first game is against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The second is against the Milwaukee Bucks.

Both games will be played in Los Angeles with a 9:30 PM Eastern tip. Marc Kestecher and Vince Carter will be on the call for both games.

As of Friday, February 3, LeBron James is 63 points away from Abdul-Jabbar’s 38,387 career points.

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