The Houston Chronicle parted ways with Texans beat writer Aaron Wilson a few weeks after an appearance with Boston’s The Greg Hill Show on WEEI. During the interview, Wilson failed to demonstrate objectivity, dismissing DeShaun Watson’s sexual harassment accusers as a money grab.
The interview took place March 19, the same day plaintiff attorney Tony Buzbee stated nine more civil suits were filed against Watson, bringing the number of women alleging sexual assault against the Texans quarterback to 12. There are now 22 lawsuits against Watson, who maintains the allegations are false.
On Saturday, Wilson released a statement expressing remorse for his comments during the March 19 interview with The Greg Hill Show.
“I made a mistake that I fully understand and own when I did not choose my words nearly carefully enough during a discussion regarding the sensitive, comp on a March 19 radio program regarding the sensitive, complex and controversial Deshaun Watson legal situation, in the days following the initial filing of the civil lawsuits from women against him,” Wilson wrote. “My efforts to convey perspectives on the situation clearly demonstrated an unintentional lack of sensitivity to the serious nature of these types of allegations and I sincerely apologize for my remarks. I didn’t maintain my own high standards that I’ve established and applied during my two decades of covering many other similarly important and delicate situations in the NFL. I will proceed much more carefully going forward and learn from this moment. I am committed to outstanding journalism now and always.”
After claiming the allegations were a money grab during the interview, Wilson said on WEEI that he was skeptical of Watson’s accusers. “I want to be careful in the sense that I’m not dismissing that it wasn’t true and the sense that that I wasn’t there.”
Morning host Greg Hill accused him of being pro-Watson, and despite the need for a reporter to show some semblance of objectivity with a still developing story, Wilson didn’t argue. “I’m not saying I’m not, I don’t know them, I know him,” Wilson said. “I’m not gonna throw the guy under the bus before I have some proof. I don’t feel like I have the proof, just it’s allegations.”
Hill’s co-host and former NFL tight end Jermaine Wiggins asked Wilson about Watson’s background, and the reporter highlighted his impeccable character and underprivileged upbringing. The most egregious comment from Wilson came as he tried to explain that players with impeccable reputations are better targets because they’re more likely to pay for allegations to go away.
“In his case, you know, it’s kind of like you don’t, you know, you don’t negotiate with terrorists,” Wilson told The Greg Hill Show. “You know, people are demanding money, they’re asking for money. The — it kept escalating, it kept going up and up and up. And you start talking about more and more funds, I’m not gonna say how much it got to. But my understanding is, you know, that there was an admission that, it was, you know, something, you know, just that this was, you know, just a money grab.”
According to Diana Moskovitz and Kalyn Kahler of Defector, the Chronicle’s sports department held a staff meeting Friday where they were informed Wilson was no longer employed by the publication. Wilson joined the Chronicle in 2015 as their Texans beat writer following a long tenure covering the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun.
Brandon Contes is a former reporter for BSM, now working for Awful Announcing. You can find him on Twitter @BrandonContes or reach him by email at Brandon.Contes@gmail.com.
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.”
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.
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He works full-time as a multimedia specialist at the Virginia State Corporation Commission, while also putting in part-time work for News Radio WRVA and 910 The Fan in Richmond. Additionally, you can find Jordan contributing 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 and ABC 8News. He can be reached by email at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.
ESPN Radio 94.1 Sells Station Naming Rights To Priority Automotive Group
“The programming on the station does not change.”
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.
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.”
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.