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97.1 the Fan Posts Big Numbers In Summer Book

“The success enjoyed by the Columbus sports station carried into the larger demo of adults 25 – 54, where The Fan finished fourth overall in weekday prime with a 7.3 share.”

Brandon Contes

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97.1 The Fan continues to be a dominant force in the Columbus, OH radio ratings scene. Even with shuffling their lineup mid-book, not only did The Fan continue to perform strongly, but their summer ratings success extended beyond their target demo. 

In weekday prime (M-F 6a – 7p), 97.1 The Fan earned an 11.2 share among men 25-54. The sports station ranked first in the market, a full point ahead of 99.7 The Blitz which broadcasts a rock format. The next highest talk station behind The Fan was the Ohio State owned WOSU 89.7, with a 5.6 share. 

Morning drive was the lowest share for The Fan, from 6 – 9a the Columbus sports station earned a 6.7 rating, while mostly featuring a simulcast of Golic and Wingo. But on Aug. 17, when ESPN Radio launched a new morning show, The Fan further localized their lineup by moving Bobby Carpenter, Brandon Beam and Anthony Schlegel into the AM hours. With the lineup changes, Bishop & Laurinaitis remain in the 9a – noon block and during the summer book, the duo earned a strong 9.7 share, finishing third overall. 

In the noon – 3p timeslot, The Fan topped the market with a 12.7 share, more than two points ahead of the second-place station. During those hours, The Fan mostly featured Bobby Carpenter and Anthony Rothman, but with Carpenter moving to morning drive in mid-August, Rothman closed the book with his new co-host and former show producer Matt Hayes. 

From 3 – 6p, The Fan’s afternoon drive duo Common Man & T-Bone (Mike Ricordati and Jonathan Smith) dominated the book with a 14.8 share, beating second-place 99.7 The Blitz by more than five full points.  

The success enjoyed by the Columbus sports station carried into the larger demo of adults 25 – 54, where The Fan finished fourth overall in weekday prime with a 7.3 share. From 9a – noon, The Fan finished tied for fifth in the larger demo, second-place from noon – 3p with an 8.3 share and third in afternoon drive with a strong 9.4.

Sports Radio News

Chris ‘Mad Dog’ Russo: I Don’t Do As Much Prep As You Think

“Sometimes the radio show is a lot better when it’s a little more spontaneous and you can craft it in your imagination as the day moves along, instead of having it programmed in front of you.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Chris “Mad Dog” Russo would much rather go with the flow for his radio show than try and put everything together ahead of time and hope it comes out well.

Russo was the featured guest on the Golf Digest podcast The Loop, and hosts Christopher Powers, Alex Myers and Steve Hennessey first congratulated Mad Dog on his induction into the Radio Hall of Fame last year. Russo mentioned how he had written a short speech but decided against that after seeing the other inductees run long with their speeches.

Mad Dog was asked about preparing for his SiriusXM sports talk show every day, and he said he really doesn’t put a ton of work into putting a show together.

“On certain days a little more, because on Mondays I do that NFL recap so that takes a little while to put that together at 5 o’clock – probably a couple of hours,” Russo said. “Outside of that not as much as you’d think. I mean obviously I’m gonna follow what’s going on.”

“Sometimes the radio show is a lot better when it’s a little more spontaneous and you can craft it in your imagination as the day moves along, instead of having it programmed in front of you,” he added. “This segment do this, this segment do that. Sometimes when you sort of ad lib it, and you figure it out as you’re moving the program into the second hour and the third hour, it’s a better show.”

Mad Dog talked about how he likes that his radio show is the reverse of when he does First Take on ESPN or High Heat on MLB Network. He likes not having a rundown packed to the gills for his radio show.

“The radio is more of a host’s medium,” he said. “So it’s up to me what we’re going to do.”

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Sports Radio News

Stetson Bennett IV Fires Back at Steak Shapiro Over Parade Criticism

“P.s.: I don’t like you very much mr Steak “and shake” Shapiro.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Georgia walloped TCU last week to win their second straight national championship, and the Bulldog community came together toward the end of the week to celebrate with a parade.

Quarterback Stetson Bennett IV took part in the parade, but 92.9 The Game host Steak Shapiro wasn’t thrilled with how Bennett acted during the celebration.

Shapiro on Tuesday took a shot at Bennett, who appeared to spend some time fiddling with a cell phone during the parade.

Tuesday night, Bennett responded first with a quote tweet.

Bennett followed that up with a longer statement he posted under his quote tweet explaining the situation.

“I appreciate your concern with my image/intentions/loyalties/obligations (as well as your willingness to reach out to me to confirm them),” Bennett wrote. “You obviously thought quite deeply about some motives I might’ve had.”

Bennett said ultimately he was trying to soak up the moment with his teammates, and he was just trying to make sure the celebratory mood was set with the right music on his phone.

“So to finish it off nice and neat: I was controlling the aux and playing bangers so sed and Chris and I could have a blast on our last ride into Sanford,” he said. “That’s pretty much the gist of it.”

Bennett finished with a little dig of his own at Shapiro.

“P.s.: I don’t like you very much mr Steak “and shake” Shapiro,” he said. “But to be fair, I’m not a fan of your work either.”

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Sports Radio News

Ryan Edwards Moves to The Sports Zoo on KOA

“Edwards has been on the radio in Denver since 2009. He spent eight years with 104.3 The Fan. He also did a short stint at Mile High Sports Radio.”

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Ryan Edwards is staying with KOA, but his hours are about to change. The Denver sports radio staple is moving off of Broncos Country Tonight to join Alfred Williams and Dave Logan on The Sports Zoo in afternoon drive.

“I am thrilled to join radio and football legends Dave Logan and Alfred Williams on The KOA Sports Zoo,” Edwards said in a press release. “I look forward to bringing a fans’ perspective to the Denver Broncos and all things Denver sports.”

Edwards has been on the radio in Denver since 2009. He spent eight years with 104.3 The Fan. He also did a short stint at Mile High Sports Radio.

He joined iHeart Denver in 2017. He was on Orange & Blue 760 before the company replaced the station with a conservative talk format. He moved to KOA in 2019, where he has worked on Broncos Country Tonight with Benjamin Albright.

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