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Rod Gilmore Explains PAC-12 Player Priorities To Paul Finebaum

“During the interview, Gilmore said that university presidents and trustees should be worried about the optics of having a season just for financial reasons, noting that the desire to start a season can only take conferences so far.”

Ricky Keeler

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With college football right around the corner, one program made the decision to cancel its entire season as UCONN shut down the program for the 2020 season due to COVID-19 on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the Big Ten also made an announcement Wednesday as they unveiled their conference-only schedule, which is slated to begin on September 5.

All of this news comes days after PAC-12 players released a statement to The Players’ Tribune demanding safety precautions be put in place in addition to a 50/50 revenue split with the conference for the upcoming season. The Big Ten released their own statement on Wednesday:

During the first hour of The Paul Finebaum Show on Tuesday, ESPN college football analyst Rod Gilmore joined the program. Gilmore, who is a Stanford alum, has been working at ESPN and ABC since 1996 and is one of the more familiar voices in the booth for PAC-12 games. You can catch the interview here at about the 20-minute mark.

Right at the beginning of the interview, Gilmore mentioned that he is worried about the start of the college football season, saying a bubble model, which has proven to be the most effective way to limit athletes exposure to the virus, is beyond what college football can do.

“I’m more worried today than I was yesterday. It just seems to fluctuate on a daily basis,” he said. “The events of the last few days are really unsettling. When you hear about a player at Indiana who has COVID-19 and winds up in the hospital, Rutgers shuts down, Northwestern shuts down…I am more worried today than I was a couple weeks ago. Add to the mix that the players have found their voice and they are weighing in with their concerns, which is perfectly legitimate. That was something conferences didn’t have to consider a couple of weeks ago.”

Gilmore, who has spoken with PAC-12 players about these issues, gave insight gave some insight into the players’ demands and their priorities.

“You have to step back and recognize we are in the midst of a sea change in college football, he told Finebaum. “The things that are concerning players just didn’t crop up this year….All these things have been percolating for quite a while. Then, we have 2020 where we have these incredible triggering events with George Floyd killing on video for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. Social justice has become a very personal thing to a lot of players. They feel invested. 

“You look at the PAC-12 players and their manifesto/list of demands. They included in there the reference to money and sharing the revenue but from talking to players the past few days, it seems clear their focus was really on health and safety, getting the testing right, and being able to make an impact socially. There’s a lot going on and a lot to unpack.”

During the interview, Gilmore said that university presidents and trustees should be worried about the optics of having a season just for financial reasons, noting that the desire to start a season can only take conferences so far.

“We may get a start, we may get teams that push ahead to start the season, but can we get through a season? I’m not optimistic right now at this moment.”

Of course, with all the conference schedules not having the same format, it also leads to the question that if one conference does not play, would the others follow suit? Gilmore would not be surprised if that did not happen:

While schedules are being released, there is still so much uncertainty surrounding college football in 2020. This interview between two prominent media members in college football highlights that. 

Sports Radio News

Alpha Media Ends San Antonio Sports Star Simulcast, 1250 AM Goes All ESPN Radio

“Alpha launched Sports Star on 94.1 back in June of last year, giving San Antonio its first FM sports talk station.”

Jordan Bondurant

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San Antonio now has a frequency where people can find local sports talk and the full ESPN Radio lineup.

RadioInsight reported owner Alpha Media has tweaked what was on 1250 AM, launching it as ESPN 1250. The station will be San Antonio’s 24/7/365 home for ESPN Radio. That will include NBA, NFL and MLB play-by-play on top of talk.

San Antonio’s Sports Star had been simulcasting on 1250, but Alpha will carry on with live and local programming on the stronger FM frequency. Alpha launched Sports Star on 94.1 back in June of last year, giving San Antonio its first FM sports talk station.

Sports Star is the home of the Dallas Cowboys and Texas Rangers in San Antonio.

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Sports Radio News

ESPN Radio 94.1 Sells Station Naming Rights To Priority Automotive Group

“The programming on the station does not change.”

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Max Media has found an interesting new revenue stream in Virginia Beach. ESPN Radio 94.1 has sold its naming rights. The station has rebranded as Priority Auto Sports Radio 94.1 ESPN.

“This is an important partnership for us,” said Priority Automotive COO Matt Elmer. “At Priority Automotive we think sports ties everyone together, so this is a great opportunity for us to be a voice in the community and partner with the number one voice for sports in Hampton Roads, ESPN 94.1.”

The programming on the station does not change. Listeners in the 757 will still hear the nationally syndicated ESPN Radio lineup except for in afternoon drive when The Tim Donnelly Show is on the air.

“The partnership between ESPN 94.1 and Priority Automotive is a natural evolution for both companies,” President and Market Manager Keith Barton added. “From the many youth organizations to college teams, Priority Automotive Has been dedicated to sports in Hampton Roads for decades. Max Media is incredibly proud to be partnered with such a class organization.”

Priority Automotive owns 17 car dealerships across Virginia.

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Sports Radio News

SiriusXM Plots Super Bowl LVII Coverage

“SiriusXM will deliver fans around the country the unique mix of sports, music and entertainment programming that you can only find on SiriusXM.”

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SiriusXM has announced its extensive plans for coverage of Super Bowl LVII and the events leading up to the big game.

A dedicated Super Bowl pop-up channel on SiriusXM Channel 104 will be just one of the avenues SiriusXM plans to cover the event. Amber Theoharis will conduct interviews with players, and personalities making their way through Radio Row throughout the week that will air on the pop-up channel.

Mad Dog Sports Radio will have a large presence on Radio Row, with shows hosted by Chris “Mad Dog” Russo, Adam Schein, Dusty Dvoracek, Danny Kanell, and Steve Torre all airing live on location in Arizona. Former NFL All-Pro wide receiver Brandon Marshall will be on hand to host I Am Athlete Tonight from the event, as well.

“With all eyes and ears focused on Phoenix for Super Bowl Week, SiriusXM will deliver fans around the country the unique mix of sports, music and entertainment programming that you can only find on SiriusXM,” said SiriusXM President and Chief Content Officer Scott Greenstein.

“With multiple game broadcasts, several channels in Phoenix covering the latest news and providing expert analysis on the teams, interviews with many of the celebrities in town for the game, and our exclusive concert with Luke Combs, our subscribers will have exceptional access throughout the biggest week on the NFL calendar.”

ESPNU Radio hosts Colt McCoy, Rick Neuheisel, and Max Starks will also be in Arizona on Radio Row, in addition to Dusty and Danny hosting their shows each day from Radio Row.

Fantasy football expert Jeff Mans and SportsGrid Radio host Scott Ferrall will also originate content from Radio Row.

SiriusXM will offer four different game broadcasts of Super Bowl LVII. The Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles home broadcasts will each air, as will the national Westwood One call. Additionally, a Spanish-language broadcast will also be provided. Listeners will also be able to hear the halftime show — performed by pop star Rihanna — on Sirius XM Hits 1, The Heat, and Super Bowl LVII Radio.

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