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Fred Toucher Shares His BSM Summit Experience on 98.5 The Sports Hub

“It went well. Felger’s ratings are better so every time they put up the ratings, Felger seemed vastly superior to me.”

Derek Futterman

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For the first time since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the sports media industry came together at the 2022 Barrett Sports Media Summit, an opportunity not only to learn about the evolution of the industry, but also to catch up with former colleagues and make valuable connections for the future.

The two-day event welcomed executives such as ESPN Chairman Jimmy Pitaro and Meadowlark Media CEO John Skipper; program directors including 670 The Score/105.7 The Fan’s Mitch Rosen and 98.7 ESPN New York’s Ryan Hurley; and on-air hosts, among them Mike Francesa and Christopher “Mad Dog” Russo, WFAN’s Craig Carton, and 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Fred Toucher.

The 2022 BSM Summit was the topic of discussion Thursday morning on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich in Boston. Toucher was joined by his colleague and afternoon drive co-host Mike Felger on the “Kings of Content” panel presented by Beasley Media Group at the event and, upon returning to Boston, spoke about his experience in New York City both inside and outside of the Anne Bernstein Theater.

“Me and Felger were up there for an hour, but the thing is Felger is a real businessman,” said Toucher. “Felger flew in, did his thing [at the BSM Summit], then drove over to the ESPN Studios and did a show and flew home.”

Felger and his co-host Tony Massarotti were honored as the recipients of the first-ever Mike & the Mad Dog Award Thursday as the best local sports radio show in the United States. Additionally, 98.5 The Sports Hub Program Director Rick Radzik won the 2022 Mark Chernoff Award as sports radio’s top programmer Wednesday, for which Toucher was on-hand to witness.

“It went well,” said Toucher. “Felger’s ratings are better so every time they put up the ratings, Felger seemed vastly superior to me.”

Toucher and his wife flew in for the event the night before and kicked off their time in New York City going out to dinner with friends. They also made the time to check out some of the destinations around Times Square, including the M&M’s Store and MLB New York City Flagship Retail Store. Being that the BSM Summit was within the Broadway Theatre District, Toucher noticed that many of the classic plays are still in theatres.

“They have the same plays: Chicago and The Book of Mormon; those are all still playing out there,” said Toucher. “It’s exhausting, though, walking around there trying to find out where you are.”

While specifically discussing the BSM Summit, Toucher called the Anne Bernstein Theater a “perfect” venue for the event and was impressed by the list of names assembled for sports media’s premier conference.

“I’m not positive who was there when I was there,” said Toucher. “I talked to [SVP/Market Manager for Audacy Boston] Mike Thomas for a while.”

Sports Radio News

Andrew Fillipponi: Peter Burns Made ‘Innocuous Joke’ To Ben Watson

“So wait a minute? Because you believe in Jesus Christ you care about your wife more than other people? What are you talking about?”

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The on-air spat between SEC Network host Peter Burns and analyst Ben Watson continues to be bandied about in sports media circles, with 93.7 The Fan hosts Andrew Fillipponi and Chris Mueller discussing the topic Tuesday.

“I’m on Team Burns,” Fillipponi said.

“Forget who’s team you’re on,” Chris Mueller said. “I think you’ve do have to keep the wives and children out of this.”

“What are you talking about, keep the wives and out of it?!,” Fillipponi asked.

“Do we believe this is work or shoot here?,” Mueller wondered.

“Oh, I think this is real,” Fillpponi added, which Mueller agreed.

“Do you think a close fist from Ben Watson hit Peter Burns?,” Mueller asked.

“No, I think he picked him up by the lapels,” Fillipponi said.

When the subject of Watson’s religion was brought up, Fillipponi then pointed out the absurdity of the situation.

“So wait a minute? Because you believe in Jesus Christ you care about your wife more than other people? What are you talking about?”

“I think he might have a shorter fuse and not taking in humor that Peter Burns was giving out,” Mueller said.

“It was an innocuous joke!,” Fillipponi stated. “It wasn’t a joke! Why is it in bad taste?”

Mueller then added the idea of Watson’s wife texting Burns insinuates there’s an inappropriate relationship.

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Sports Radio News

Craig Carton: Booger McFarland’s Zach Wilson Analysis ‘An Embarrasment’

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Craig Carton

ESPN NFL analyst Booger McFarland raised eyebrows on Monday Night Countdown this week by saying New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson has never been held accountable for his actions because he was a “young man who grew up with a lot of money”. WFAN afternoon host Craig Carton called out McFarland’s comments Tuesday as outlandish.

“It was an embarrasment,” Carton said. “Someone should ask Booger McFarland if his kids — who grew up with amazing wealth — have accountability in their lives or if having a little bit of money in your pocket immediately discounts the possibility to have accountability. He’s an idiot and we learned that last night.”

“It’s funny that Steve Young was on the other side of it,” Evan Roberts noted. “Because a long time ago, Steve Young criticized Chris Simms because he’s the son of a famous quarterback.”

“You don’t have to invent reasons for why Zach Wilson isn’t playing well,” added Carton. “Just watch his tape. He’s not playing well. Maybe he’s just not good!”

Carton later said NFL reporters “will try to make a name for themselves by putting out a story” about quarterbacks who take responsibility for their teams failures, while Wilson wouldn’t accept the blame.

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Sports Radio News

Greg Hill: Ben Watson, Peter Burns Drama Was A Bit

“Be careful when you’re talking about somebody’s wife and their kids. ‘Cause not everybody jokes the same way.”

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Peter Burns and Ben Watson shared an awkward exchange during the halftime show of an SEC Network football game over the weekend, and many are still debating whether Watson walking off the set was serious or not. Count part of the cast of The Greg Hill Show on WEEI as doubters.

“That was a a bit,” Courtney Cox said. “That was absolutely a bit.”

“Yeah, unlike the Chris Rock/Will Smith thing, I assume that was a bit,” Hill said. “I can’t believe that Ben Watson is really angry about that.”

“I dunno, man. There’s been a lot of speculation that it isn’t,” Jermaine Wiggins added. “There are people who are very sensitive about you clowning on them or joking with them. Especially with joking about their wife. Some people can’t handle jokes like that.”

After a back-and-forth with Cox about the legitimacy of the joke, Wiggins concluded by saying for some folks family is off limits.

“I’ve learned something in my 47 years on this Earth: be careful when you’re talking about somebody’s wife and their kids. ‘Cause not everybody jokes the same way.”

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Barrett Media Writers

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