Bonneville’s Arizona Sports 98.7 has a new program director. The company announced longtime employee Rod Lakin has been promoted to the PD position.
Lakin joined Arizona Sports in 2004 as a board-op. During his 15-years with Bonneville, the longtime contributor has worked with nearly every show on Arizona Sports’ lineup in some capacity. Lakin was named APD of 98.7 in 2014 and program director of sister station ESPN 620 last year.
Former program director and current VP of Programming, Ryan Hatch will continue to oversee all on-air content for Bonneville Phoenix, working with Lakin on sports, along with Martha Maurer and Joe Huizenga on news.
“Rod is a rising sports programming star and I’m thrilled he’s going to take on a larger role and continue to grow with us at Bonneville,” Hatch told BSM.
Jason Benetti: White Sox Exit Had More To Do With the Tigers Interest in All I Do
“Benetti addressed his exit from the Chicago White Sox during a lengthy conversation with Parkins and Spiegel on 670 The Score.”
Last month it was announced that longtime Chicago White Sox announcer Jason Benetti would become the new TV play-by-play voice of the Detroit Tigers.
Benetti on Parkins & Spiegel on Tuesday said the decision to leave his post in Chicago after eight seasons was not an easy one.
“The Tigers asked me a lot of questions about who I am, what I value, and what I care about in a telecast,” Benetti said. “And what I care about in a team and a team that I want to be on with a crew.”
“White Sox fans have done a lot for me in a lot of ways. But the Tigers and their aim to want to have the entire range in a telecast, and the way they’re building, was so appealing to me,” he later added. “And it all comes down to the idea of The Voice, where somebody hears you. And they had eight years of stuff that they watched. It all was out there, the entirety of what I do, and they said, ‘We want that.’ That is appealing to me and will be endlessly for my entire life.”
Jason Benetti was asked if he had ever given thought to the idea of being a career-long White Sox broadcaster, but Benetti said staying in one place for 40 years just isn’t who he is. When he felt like he can’t or shouldn’t leave his hometown team, that was when he knew he had to take the Tigers up on their offer.
“I know what it’s like to be comfortable. I know what it’s like to be in one place,” he said. “And part of what makes me, me, is I don’t like when other people tell me you can’t. But I really hate when my own mind tells me I can’t. Because sometimes in the past I’ve listened.”
“That’s when I really have to push back on myself,” he added.
Jason Benetti mentioned that there were little things that he wasn’t such a fan of when it came to working with the White Sox, things like eating on camera or singing, but you can’t exactly pinpoint one specific thing as the reason why he decided to move to Detroit.
“I’m just saying all this to tell you all that it is super complicated and there were a ton of factors,” he said. “But in the end, it really is a thing that I felt like I was pulled to do.”
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He’s a multimedia journalist and communicator who works at the Virginia State Corporation Commission in Richmond. Jordan also contributes occasional coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly, WRIC-TV 8News and Audacy Richmond. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.
Joe Benigno: No Ground Rules in Texting Jets Head Coach
“What else do you want me to say? There’s nothing else I can say.”
With a losing streak that has reached five consecutive games and questions surrounding the team, the New York Jets endured several rounds of negative publicity on Monday. A report from Dianna Russini of The Athletic stated that Wilson was reluctant to reassume the starting quarterback responsibilities, while former WFAN host Joe Benigno revealed that head coach Robert Saleh told him in a text message that he does not like Wilson.
While Saleh addressed the first matter in a press conference yesterday and gave a vote of confidence to his quarterback, there has been several discussions surrounding what Benigno revealed Monday on WFAN. Benigno recognized that he misinterpreted what Saleh said and appeared on Boomer & Gio on Tuesday morning to clear the air. Rather than not caring for his quarterback, Joe Benigno revealed that Saleh was incredulous to the fact that he wanted Wilson to start again after suggesting to him for weeks that he should be benched. The matter was a topic of discussion to open Tuesday’s edition of the show, and Benigno called in to try and defend his actions.
“Well look, I wouldn’t call [it] me hammering him,” Joe Benigno said. “You think I’m sitting there hammering him; is that what I’m doing?”
Benigno did not seem to grasp an understanding of what he did to Saleh, who morning show co-host Gregg Giannotti surmises received a deluge of messages and feedback about the purported narrative. Giannotti presented a hypothetical situation to Benigno where he promulgated information that Benigno did not like his co-host Evan Roberts based on what he was told by him. After asking Benigno whether or not he would consider the action by Giannotti to be an example of throwing him under the bus, he concurred that it would constitute such a classification.
“Okay, well that’s what you did to Rob Saleh yesterday!,” Giannotti replied. “That’s my point.”
“I defended myself in the way that I have to,” Joe Benigno said back. “What else do you want me to say? I shouldn’t have done it.”
Benigno has fostered a relationship with Saleh where they text back-and-forth about the team, but there have not been ground rules established in their interactions. After Giannotti inquired pertaining to whether or not certain things were off-the-record, he was surprised to learn that there were no set limitations about what to and not to disseminate. This caused him not to want to know whether or not Benigno heard from Saleh himself yesterday after the reaction it elicited.
Morning show co-host Boomer Esiason continued the discussion by asking Benigno how the owner of the Jets would feel if someone revealed information that was obtained through a text message that was willingly sent by the head coach. He also averred that Saleh would likely have plenty of time to text with Benigno in the future, surmising that he would be losing his job after the team’s performance this season. Benigno still did not understand how he harmed the reputation of the head coach, causing Giannotti to recapitulate what he had explained earlier.
“The fact that he wants to continue texting you about the team after this makes him look like a stone-cold moron,” Giannotti said, preceding his remarks by explaining that he intended to demonstrate no disrespect to Benigno. “If he didn’t learn his lesson this time around and he’s still going to go back and talk to you about the team, then he shouldn’t be the head coach because that is idiotic. I can’t even imagine the stuff that he heard yesterday from people.”
Although Benigno is not sure if Saleh will still text him about the team, the morning show co-hosts seemed to feel that he reached an understanding about the implications and consequences of his actions. After the call concluded, Esiason inferred that Benigno was feeling “sick to his stomach” about what he did on the air.
“Alright, well look,” Benigno said. “I guess only time will tell, alright. What else do you want me to say? There’s nothing else I can say. Obviously I made a mistake here; something I shouldn’t have done; totally misinterpreted it; and what can I do about it now – not much.”
“What you did actually,” Giannotti answered. “I think what you can do about it now is what you did, which is understand what happened; that’s all. At least we understand that you understand now, so now we can move on with an understanding.”
Shan Shariff: FS1 Has the Worst NFL Analysts
He noted that Skip Bayless, Craig Carton, and LeSean McCoy were the “dumbest” analysts for FS1.
FS1 has assembled a wide-ranging cast of former NFL players and pundits throughout its analyst, panelist, and host roles. That doesn’t mean they have earned the respect of 105.3 The Fan’s Shan Shariff.
During the Dallas morning show Tuesday, Shariff shared that in a recent interview with Awful Announcing, he named the three “dumbest” analysts when it comes to the Dallas Cowboys. He noted that Skip Bayless is the worst offender, while Craig Carton is third on his list behind LeSean McCoy. All three work for FS1.
A recent statement from McCoy caught the particular ire of Shariff, for arguing that Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott, despite playing well recently and being viewed as an NFL MVP candidate, needs to play worse to see how he’ll respond to the adversity.
“I wanna see when he messes and how he responds,” McCoy said.
“I honestly think — I don’t know if he’s a clown or if he’s just not intelligent…he made zero sense,” Shariff said. “Everyone else on set was looking at him like ‘You want him to be worse and mess up so he can respond to that in order to get more MVP consideration?'”
“If he had said ‘I need to see Dak play well against good teams’, that’s a totally valid statement,” co-host RJ Choppy said. “This makes no sense.”
Shariff then brought up a recent statement from FS1’s Joy Taylor that argued Prescott can’t win the MVP due to his on-field play.
“This is like a two-and-a-half-minute clip. I don’t have the patience for or the tolerance for that,” Shariff said.
Co-host Bobby Belt responded by saying “She’s clearly on TV because of her football opinions,” which led Shan Shariff to say “Yeah, Thanks, Jason Taylor,” the older brother of Joy Taylor, who made the Pro Football Hall of Fame after a 13-year NFL career.