The Denver sports radio ratings for the summer book produced a mixture of highs and lows, but one constant was the performance of Mark Schlereth and Mike Evans. The 104.3 The Fan morning team led the market for the quarter with an impressive 11.3 share, placing them 1st among Men 25-54. The show did lose a point year over year, but a 1st place performance delivering double digit shares is one that The Fan had to feel great about.
Turning to middays, The Fan led its competition with ‘Sandy & Orlando’ delivering a 3.6 to place them 10th, and ‘Stokley & Zach’ finishing 6th with a 4.1. The bigger areas of concern were a 1.7 year over year drop by Sandy and Orlando, and a 2.3 year over year drop by Stokley and Zach. The lack of sports as a result of the pandemic certainly provide a valid reason for a decline. The tougher conversation is the nearly 8 point drop between mornings and the early midday show.
104.3 The Fan had to feel good about the afternoon performance it received from Darren ‘DMac’ McKee and Tyler Polumbus. ‘The Drive‘ came in 2nd for the book with a 6.7 share. That led the local competition and News/Talk station KOA where DMac’s former partner Alfred Williams hosts head to head against his former employer. The Drive did lose 1.6 in share year over year, the result of the pandemic impacting sports radio brands.
Overall, The Fan was the top sports radio brand in the market for the quarter in weekday prime (M-F 6a-7p), finishing 2nd with a 6.5. Last year at this time they were just above an 8 share. However, with its morning show producing nearly 5 points above the station’s number, The Fan is in good shape. The challenge now is getting the rest of the lineup to elevate to a similar position.
In terms of local competition, Altitude Sports Radio 92.5 is still relatively new to the marketplace and has a long way to go, but there were a few positives to recognize.
Starting in mornings, the team of Vic Lombardi, Marc Moser, and Brett Kane doubled their share year over year. They sit further back at a 1.3 but improving during a pandemic minus sports while most in the market decline is something the station likely feels good about.
In afternoons, Nate Kreckman and Andy Lindahl saw similar improvement, raising their overall share year over year by 33%. The show is now up to a 2.1 and in 12th place during the summer book, a climb of 8 spots. That’s a strong gain in just 12 months.
Middays is where Altitude stumbled in the summer book. Josh Dover, Ryan Harris and Scott Hastings suffered the same fate as some of The Fan’s shows, dropping seven tenths of a point year over year. The midday trio did a 1.3, falling to 20th.
For the quarter, Altitude was the lone sports radio brand in the market to grow year over year. Though the progress was light, one tenth of a point improvement in M-F 6a-6p, it beats the alternative.
With the Nuggets and Avalanche advancing to the playoffs and Broncos football creating more interest in the market during the fall, the next quarter should offer more content opportunities for shows and stations to take advantage of.
WCCO Brings Back The Sports Huddle
“The Minnesota sports-focused show returns after previously being hosted by the late Sid Hartman and Dave Mona for over 40 years.”
Audacy announced it is bringing The Sports Huddle back to 830 WCCO in Minneapolis, MN. The show returns on Sunday, Oct. 10, and is airing from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m CT on WCCO with hosts Mike Max and Pete Najarian.
The Minnesota sports-focused show returns after previously being hosted by the late Sid Hartman and Dave Mona for over 40 years. The new crew is bringing their flair to the Minnesota sports scene with big-name interviews and listener interaction.
“We’ve been discussing for a while a show that ‘reboots’ the heritage and equity of the old Sports Huddle while exhibiting a new energy and more expansive template for Pete and Mike to talk about all the various topics they’re passionate about,” said Brad Lane, Brand Manager, 830 WCCO. “We’re confident this new edition will help take this legacy brand to the next level while offering a unique and fresh outlook on the most relevant topics each week.”
Max has been with the station since 1998 and currently hosts his weeknight show Sports to the Max. He also contributes to The WCCO Morning News and started his career as an intern at WCCO-TV.
“Pete and I can’t wait to continue bringing what we grew up with to our audience,” said Max. “Sundays on WCCO have always meant entertaining and exclusive content.”
His athletic co-host, Najarian, played football at the University of Minnesota and was inducted into the program’s Hall of Fame in 1992. Najarian ended his career as Minnesota’s second-leading tackler and parlayed that on-field success into an off-field financial career.
“This show will offer listeners a fresh look at sports with straightforward comments and takes,” said Najarian. “We may even mix in some financials when it’s appropriate.”
A new era for The Sports Huddle begins in about two weeks.
FanDuel: Craig Carton Partnership Adds Humanity To Addiction
”We want to grow this industry in a healthy way for the long term.”
Fanduel recently announced that it is partnering with Craig Carton to be their first ever ”responsible gaming ambassador” for the company.
Over the weekend, Carton had the Chief Marketing Officer of Fanduel Mike Raffensperger on his gambling addiction show, Hello My Name is Craig, to speak on their mission with the partnership as well as why it was the perfect partnership for both sides.
”What I have tried to explain to people is that there was a lengthy vetting period on both sides.” said Craig Carton about the partnership. ”Fanduel wanted to know who Craig Carton is, is he full of crap about his struggle with gambling, and ultimately what’s in it for Fanduel.” said Carton.
Raffensperger added that Fanduel wants to keep their consumers safe while using their product.
”We want to grow this industry in a healthy way for the long term,” he said. ”We understand that some people who use our product are going to have trouble using it responsibly, and it can really affect their lives.”
As to why Carton is the right guy for the role in the partnership, Raffensperger added ”I think what we recognize we needed is to add some humanity as to how we get this message across.”
Craig Carton notably has a long past with gambling. He ultimately served just over a year of his 3 year prison sentence for his role in a Ponzi scheme that saw him defrauding investors to pay back his gambling debts.
Craig Carton Making Responsible Gambling Content For FanDuel
“He will help shape the company’s responsible gaming policy, play a role in FanDuel building AI that can spot problematic gambling patterns, and host events in which he will help younger bettors understand what an addiction looks like.”
FanDuel announced yesterday that it has hired its first ever “responsible gaming ambassador”. WFAN’s Craig Carton has agreed to take on the role. He has been open about his gambling addiction and advocated for those that believe they have a problem to seek help on air since returning to New York radio last year.
The content he creates for FanDuel will have a very specific focus. A press release says Carton will promote messages of “advocacy, prevention awareness and content development focused on the importance of wagering within limits”.
Craig Carton was sentenced to three years in prison for his role in a ponzi scheme to defraud investors of money they were told was being invested in tickets for resale. In reality, Carton was using the money to repay some of his gambling debts.
“My story and personal history with gambling has been well documented,” said Carton. “More than ever, I want to use my experience and platform to shine a meaningful spotlight on the issue of problem gambling. It was important to me that I find a real partnership with a company that shared my passion for this issue. It became clear FanDuel shared the same goals and was comfortable working transparently with me for the sole purpose of protecting people.”
FanDuel is planning to utilize Carton in a number of ways. He will help shape the company’s responsible gaming policy, play a role in FanDuel building AI that can spot problematic gambling patterns, and host events in which he will help younger bettors understand what an addiction looks like.
He will also create audio and video for FanDuel’s Play Safe Campaign. FanDuel will help Carton’s WFAN program “Hello, My Name is Craig” find a bigger audience. The show airs on weekends and features Carton discussing his addiction and offering advice to others seeking help.
“We are absolutely thrilled to partner with Craig to place even more emphasis on responsible gaming behaviors,” said Mike Raffensperger, FanDuel Group’s Chief Marketing Officer. “Everyone at FanDuel understands the importance of protecting our customers who are also our family, friends, neighbors and community members. Craig’s powerful personal story will help fuel our mission of making sure no bet placed results in hurting a loved one.”
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