Connect with us
Executive Editor Ad
Jim Cutler Demos

BSM Writers

Alex Faust Is Ready For Friday Night Baseball

“The opportunity to get back into baseball was just one that I couldn’t pass up…I really admire what Apple is trying to do with a new product.”

Derek Futterman



In order to craft a career in a field as competitive and desirable as sports media, it takes a willingness to learn, talent, networking and surrounding oneself with the right people and having an appropriate level of self-confidence. Much like the slim chance a baseball player makes it to the major leagues, let alone exactly according to their plan, the odds everything goes unabated and as outlined are minuscule. The road to the show for Alex Faust has been atypical, but through persistence and determination, he has forged a portfolio spanning local and national broadcasts with a world of possibility lying ahead.

Faust will begin the next phase of his broadcast career this Friday at 7:00 PM ET as the San Diego Padres face the Atlanta Braves to kick off the second season of Friday Night Baseball on Apple TV+. Prior to the start of the 2022 season, Major League Baseball and its national media rights holders – The Walt Disney Company (ESPN); FOX Sports; and Turner Sports (TBS) – had negotiated new agreements through 2028 worth a reported $12.24 billion.

Additionally, the league agreed to streaming deals with Peacock for MLB Sunday Leadoff and Apple TV+ for Friday Night Baseball, reportedly worth a combined $115 million annually. Namely, Major League Baseball receives a sum of about $1.8 billion in annual revenue from national media deals, along with more postseason games due to the addition of two wild card teams and a restructured playoff format.

Baseball was the first professional sport Faust ever called and a game he was enthralled to consume early in his youth. Although he has previously called national baseball games for FOX Sports and NESN on a fill-in basis, it was never on a regular schedule nor with a fixed color commentator.

In fact, Faust has not regularly worked in baseball since his time working as a radio play-by-play announcer for the Staten Island Yankees, a defunct minor league team and former affiliate of the New York Yankees.

“The opportunity to get back into baseball was just one that I couldn’t pass up,” Faust said. “….I really admire what Apple is trying to do with a new product. It’s hard with the transition from traditional cable to go into streaming, but especially after meeting with some folks there [over] the last couple of weeks, they view it as an opportunity to try different things while at the same time being traditional in the way we go about our business.”

Apple TV+ is subscription-based, requiring users to pay $6.99 a month to access the library of movies, television shows, and live programming. While its broadcasts of Major League Baseball games were free last season, users will have to subscribe in order to watch Friday night matchups, which are produced by MLB Network and feature top-tier cameras and spatial audio in 5.1 surround sound. The OTT streaming platform aims to give fans an immersive experience by using the other sectors of its business to effectuate the aggregate output – in a way, horizontal integration.

Fans can receive the latest information about their favorite teams and players with Apple News; listen to team walk-up songs and other curated playlists on Apple Music; and watch additional MLB content, including the nightly MLB Big Inning whip-around show, on Apple TV+.

“This is a dynamic, new property that I know a lot of resources are being poured into,” Faust said. “[I saw] all the chatter about the picture quality and the graphics and the way the game was directed and all the different tools they have with the super slow-mos and these high-resolution cameras. The broadcast itself might be the cleanest looking in all of sports; it might be the sharpest picture in all of sports, and that’s not by mistake.”

Aside from watching baseball games and listening to commentators call the action, Faust played baseball, along with tennis, when he was younger. He quickly recognized that sports media was the path he wanted to take; however, he knew the likelihood of striking out was more likely than hitting a walk-off home run.

As a result, he majored in economics and political science as an undergraduate student at Northeastern University, balancing his studies with his participation at WRBB 104.9 FM broadcasting games, operating radio consoles, and hosting studio programming. In addition to his own work, Faust was a keen observer of announcers from afar and picked up on their various proclivities to apply in forming his own, distinctive broadcast style. Having the ability to hypothesize, experiment, fail and try again is a privilege not always afforded to those in the professional world, rendering college and other pre-professional ventures ideal for industry neophytes.

“I don’t think you have to have a degree in broadcasting to be on-air,” Faust opined. “You have to be a good public speaker [and] you have to be confident in your ability to present an idea or a story, but that doesn’t necessarily lend itself to exclusively being a student of broadcasting.”

Broadcasting was a side gig for Faust during his first three years of college, but that sentiment changed when he realized the proximity of his graduation. Because of this, he made a concentrated effort to find ways to gain more repetitions so he could continue to have a voice in the profession.

On a whim, Faust submitted his demo reel to the Staten Island Yankees for their open radio play-by-play announcer job while continuing to look for other chances to remain involved in sports media. After all, he had received a prestigious national honor when he was named the 2011 recipient of the Jim Nantz Award from the National Sports Media Association as the country’s top college sportscaster.

In the span of 48 hours, Faust received a job offer from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), a well-regarded accounting firm, along with the chance to broadcast home games at night and on weekends for the Staten Island Yankees. This auspicious outcome afforded Faust peace of mind as he completed his degree, knowing he would have a steady job paired with the ability to announce live baseball games on the side. Little did he know his hobby would eventually become his full-time gig.

“I had a great experience at PwC, and I’d be remiss without thanking my bosses there for allowing me to pursue not only that gig, but others that popped up once I started getting a little bit of television work,” Faust said. “They were flexible in letting me have my day job [and] do that. I think from their standpoint, it was the belief that ‘If you’re working on this passion project, you’re going to be a better employee.’”

Throughout his early years in the industry, Faust looked to several accomplished play-by-play announcers for inspiration and advice, including Dave O’Brien, Sean McDonough, and Ian Eagle. In conversing with these and other broadcast professionals, Faust became inspired to continue to make sense of the business and earn chances to augment his versatility and knowledge of sports and media as a whole. In juggling multiple tasks as a management consultant at PwC, he was unfazed by the prospect of regularly calling different sports to become more fixated in the industry.

“It’s no different than going back to working at PwC,” he said. “To advance in a highly competitive industry like that, you have to have a diverse skill set; you have to show continuous improvement; and you have to have an aptitude for what you’re doing and build good relationships. It’s no different in broadcasting…. I have to put on a good show every day to show that I’m still up to this.”

Following his first year broadcasting games for the Staten Island Yankees, Faust added radio play-by-play announcing for the Utica Comets, the former American Hockey League affiliate of the Vancouver Canucks. It was his first foray calling hockey since his time in Northeastern University, a sport predicated on speed, skill, and a flair for the dramatic, and he was doing it for a franchise in its inaugural season.

As Faust’s profile grew, he received more opportunities to provide the soundtrack to signature sporting events. His decision to remain in Boston after graduating from Northeastern University was for the purpose of landing television jobs, one of which came with the regional sports network NESN on broadcasts of college basketball and Hockey East games. Some of his memorable moments with NESN include calling his alma mater’s win of the Hockey East championship and calling three consecutive college basketball games on the same day at TD Garden.

Through it all, he was establishing pivotal relationships and fostering a greater sense of professionalism in collaborating with colleagues, especially those tasked with consummating a flawless television broadcast.

“Treat your production crew with the utmost respect because they are there to make you look good,” Faust said. “There’s no reason to have any sort of bad rapport when, at the end of the day, they’re there for you…. I don’t want to say that from the standpoint of having an inflated ego, but it’s the reality.”

College sports were a fundamental part of Faust’s early years in the industry, freelancing to call both college basketball and college football for select matchups on ESPN and FOX Sports with the hopes of eventually landing a full-time broadcasting job.

Moreover, he called the NCAA Men’s Frozen Four on Westwood One, but never saw himself making it to the National Hockey League, let alone before the age of 30. In fact, Faust had previously declined a chance to work an NHL game with NBC Sports, an entity he had called college hockey for in the past because he was calling games for the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) on ESPN.

Luckily for Faust, NBC Sports gave him another chance to call an NHL game – a matchup between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Tampa Bay Lightning – which happened to coincide with his hunt for a full-time role. Faust had a background in tennis and was auditioning with the Tennis Channel and had also applied to become the new television voice of the Los Angeles Kings on Bally Sports West. Bob Miller, a legendary play-by-play announcer who has a statue outside of Arena, retired from the job following the 2017 season after 44 years, as he had been hospitalized earlier in the season after feeling discomfort following quadruple bypass surgery.

“I just wanted a job interview; that was my goal,” Faust said of the Los Angeles Kings broadcasting job. “I just wanted to be considered for the role; I never thought I’d be a finalist or even land it.”

That matchup between the Blackhawks and the Lightning turned out to be one of, if not the most important assignment of Faust’s broadcasting career to date. After an eventful first two periods containing eight total goals, the game remained scoreless through the end of regulation resulting in overtime. Just over four minutes into the extra period, Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman stole the puck from then-Blackhawks forward Artemi Panarin, dishing it to his teammate Yanni Gourde dashing on a breakaway. In front of a sold-out Amalie Arena, Gourde snapped a wrist shot from the high slot past goaltender Scott Darling to win the game 5-4.

“I knew then and there as I’m calling the game, ‘Oh boy, this is my audition here for the Kings,’” Faust remembered. “It was a dramatic finish. I knew right at that moment, ‘Okay, this is my tape; this is my reel. I’m going to send this in.’”

Faust ascertains that the organization was looking for a younger broadcaster to take the reins from Miller and grow with the organization, and he was invited in to call a mock broadcast with longtime analyst and former Kings winger Jim Fox. It was evident during the audition that Faust and Fox were able to instantly cultivate natural synergy, effectively closing the deal. Faust had made it to the NHL at the age of 28, making him the youngest play-by-play announcer in the sport. As everything transpired, Faust was cognizant about trying to differentiate himself from Miller while maintaining the high standard he had set and received myriad support from older counterparts around the league.

“I always felt like the pressure I put on my own shoulders was that I just wanted to live up to expectation [and] not let anyone down,” Faust said. “….I carried my own style coming into the job, and that’s something that the Kings actually encouraged me [to do] from the very beginning.”

Los Angeles is the second-largest media market in the United States, and the home of legendary sportscasters over the years – including Chick Hearn, Vin Scully, Bob Miller, and Ralph Lawler. The marketplace of late has shifted to younger talent over the last decade, welcoming in new voices such as Joe Davis, Noah Eagle, and Stephen Nelson, along with Faust.

He affirms that rooting interests in the locale are “fragmented” wherefore the litany of activities and excursions available to residents due to the abundance of sunshine and clear skies. There was an adjustment period when Faust, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., made the move to Los Angeles, but he was able to quickly assimilate and become part of the soundtrack of sports.

“There’s a hustle in this market that you have to be able to understand,” Faust said. “It’s very different from an East Coast market like New York,” Faust said. “In a lot of ways, LA has opened itself up to younger broadcasters and [is] trying to keep the broadcast as current as possible…. I think teams are looking for a broadcast that connects with a younger audience, especially with the evolution away from traditional viewing models and having folks that can connect and relate.”

Since its television debut in 1964, it can be argued that Jeopardy has been America’s most popular quiz show, welcoming erudite contestants to put questions to answers for a chance to win a lucrative cash prize. Alex Trebek was the show’s host from 1984 until his passing in 2020, bringing an unmistakable style and presence to the stage while informing and entertaining viewers.

The show is filmed at Sony Pictures Studios’ Stage 10 in Culver City, Calif. just outside of Los Angeles, and he lived in the area as well. When asked in 2018 who should succeed him as the next host of the show in an interview with TMZ, Trebek gave two possibilities – CNN senior legal analyst Laura Coates and Faust himself, with Trebek stating that he had spoken to show producers about him.

Faust had never conversed with Trebek at the time and regrets not having the chance to do so before he passed away. He also never received a phone call from Sony Pictures about auditioning for the show, nor did he actively try to land the job. After all, he was content in his role and had never thought about hosting a game show before that point. Even so, people who had not heard of Faust suddenly began to take interest in what he did, and he maintains a philosophy to never close doors because of the spontaneity with which new roles can sometimes present themselves.

“I think [I was] flattered just [by] somebody who looks at our show and says, ‘Okay, you do a good enough job with an on-air presence that you could handle this role,’” Faust said. “I think that’s a tremendous compliment, and I took it as such.”

Perhaps part of the allure that led Trebek, an avid hockey fan, to name Faust as a potential successor was being acquainted with his objective announcing style. As a play-by-play announcer, Faust has tried to imbue his personality into every broadcast, many of which have recurring viewers, but always making sure he is giving a complete picture of the matchup rather than calling it from just one perspective.

Moreover, he has utilized his background in data analytics to implement advanced stats into broadcasts, something Apple TV+ has made available to its consumers across its baseball coverage. He gives credit to his analyst, Fox, for being adaptable and using his wherewithal and intellect to decipher the labyrinth of data, blending the metrics and his own thoughts on the game in order to propound cohesive and logical points.

“I think you still have to take a step back and realize not everyone who’s watching your broadcast is a fan of the team, [and] not everyone wants to hear a homer,” Faust said. “They actually want to hear about the game and learn about both teams. There’s a respect to be given to the opponent and to the game in calling it fairly a lot of ways.”

The differences that exist between preparing for a hockey game and a baseball game are massive, especially in the contrasting pace of play and parlances of the sports. He calls hockey and baseball locally and nationally – the former with Bally Sports West and Turner Sports; the latter on Apple TV+ and FOX Sports.

Within the fabric of working on national games is upholding meticulous objectivity and providing relevant insights into both teams. The challenge comes in appealing to local audiences, which are largely accustomed to the sound of their broadcasts and the team itself wherefore commentators stay up to date with news, transactions, and other league information.

“Know what you need to know, but also be aware of what you don’t know and try not to reach for something you don’t know,” Faust said. “That’s kind of my guiding principle going into this season because I haven’t done a full season of baseball ever at the major league level.”

From calling a game from The Palestra in Philadelphia, Penn. to an outdoor game at the Air Force Academy; packed arenas to caliginous remote broadcast studios; North America to Australia and everywhere in-between, Faust’s broadcast career has, in a way, been of tergiversation in terms of adapting to fluid and precarious circumstances.

As other aspiring professionals begin their journeys in the industry with the hope of landing a full-time job, Faust urges them to ensure they are flexible to safeguard from missing out on chances to go on the air and hone their crafts. Effectively doing so comes by trying new things, staying ready, actively working to build relationships, and always looking to improve and expand one’s abilities.

Just what can come of putting in the effort is perhaps the great unknown knows. Sometimes, all roads lead home akin to what has happened for Alex Faust. He is eager to hear the home plate umpire shout, “Play ball!” and to engender a deeper understanding of the game based on asking questions and arriving at their answers.

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.

BSM Writers

Tricia Whitaker Will Find The Story That Matters

“My role is to really bring the viewers down to that level of the dugout and into the clubhouse.”

Derek Futterman



Tricia Whitaker FNB
Courtesy: Apple

When St. Louis Cardinals designated hitter Albert Pujols hit his 700th career home run in his final season in the majors last September, the baseball world erupted in mass jubilation. Although the milestone achievement occurred during a road game, the fans still showered one of the sport’s quintessential athletes with praise as they witnessed the fourth player enter this exclusive pinnacle of power hitters. For fans watching from afar, they were treated with crisp, vivid footage of the moment since the matchup was exclusive to Apple TV+ as a part of its Friday Night Baseball slate of games.

The game broadcast featured field reporter Tricia Whitaker, who had just joined the Apple TV+ presentations to begin the second half of the season. Being there as one of the voices tasked with keeping viewers informed and captivated by the action was a special experience that she will never forget. 

“You’re talking about the best cameras in the entire world capturing one of the most iconic players ever,” Whitaker said. “I thought the call was amazing; I thought the quality of the shots was amazing [and] I’l never forget that broadcast, ever, because it was so cool.”

Whitaker grew up in Bloomington, Ind. and would journey to Wrigley Field with her father once per summer to watch the Chicago Cubs. Through those games, she realized that a ballpark was her ideal future workplace.

“We just didn’t have a ton of money, [so] I would sit in the nosebleeds with him once a summer and that was the biggest treat in the world,” Whitaker said. “I just realized that I loved telling stories and I loved sports, so I decided to do that.”

Whitaker’s journey in the industry genuinely began as an undergraduate student at Indiana University Bloomington where she adopted a mindset to seize any opportunities offered to her. Despite having no knowledge or previous reporting experience, she accepted a role to cover a tennis match and quickly started preparing. After one of her professors saw her nascent media acumen, they recommended she audition for the university’s student television station to hone her skills. Whitaker earned a spot and began covering Indiana Hoosiers basketball and football for the show Hoosier Sports Night. From there, she simply kept on accepting anything in her purview.

“Your best asset is your availability, so I basically just said ‘Yes’ to everything,” Whitaker articulated.

Once it became time to search for a full-time position, her experience and tenacity helped her land a role at WBAY-TV in Green Bay as a sports reporter and anchor. After two football seasons working there, Whitaker relocated closer to home to report for WTTV-TV Channel 4 in Indianapolis. The time was valuable for her to cultivate new relationships with those around the industry while strengthening existing ones, serving as a foundational aspect of her reporting. 

“If they don’t trust you to tell their stories, they’re not going to talk to you,” Whitaker said. “You have to be able to have a good relationship with the players; with the coaches and everybody involved.”

At the same time, Whitaker felt compelled to make a lasting contribution to Indiana University through teaching and inspiring the next generation of journalists. She is now an adjunct professor for the IU Media School and wants her students to know how integral it is to make themselves available while being open and willing to try new things to make inroads into the profession. 

“There’s always a story to be told, so even if it’s a random event that you don’t think anyone’s paying attention to, there’s people there; there’s human stories and their stories matter,” Whitaker said. “That’s what I always try to tell my students is [to] just find that story that makes people interested in it and find that story that matters.”

Over the years working in these dual roles, Whitaker became more skilled in her position and proceeded to audition to join the Tampa Bay Rays’ broadcast crew on Bally Sports Sun as a field reporter. When she received news that she had landed the coveted job, she remembers starting to cry in her closet while trying to organize her clothes. After all, Whitaker had just learned that she would get to perform the role she idolized when she was young. The access her role gives her to the players and coaches on the field is not taken for granted.

“I’ll interview hitting coaches about a guy’s hands and where they’ve moved and about his stance,” Whitaker said. “….In the next hit, I’ll tell a story about a guy who drinks a smoothie every day before the game and he feels [that] putting spinach in it has really made a difference or something like that. My reporting style is pretty much all of it, but I do like to do the human interest stories more than I like to do anything else because I think that’s unique.”

After each Rays win, Whitaker takes the field and interviews one of the players on the team. Earlier in the season, she remembers speaking with Rays outfielder Jose Siri after he drove in three runs against the Detroit Tigers; however, the broadcast was not on Bally Sports Sun. Instead, she was doing the interview for Friday Night Baseball on Apple TV+, a national broadcast property the company pays MLB an estimated $85 million annually to carry. Going into the interview, Whitaker knew that she would need to appeal to more than just Rays fans and appropriately started the conversation by asking about the game.

Yet she also knew that it was “Salsa Night” at Comerica Park in Detroit and thanks to her work with the regional network, was cognizant of the fact that Siri likes to dance in the dugout. As a result, she concluded the interview with a request for Siri to demonstrate his salsa dancing skills, something that made an ordinary conversation stand out.

“I tried to personalize it a little bit to help people get to know Jose Siri a little bit better because I think that’s important,” Whitaker said. “….You make sure you talk about baseball, but then you add a little flair to it; add a little personality to it. Everybody loves salsa, right?”

The Apple broadcasts require Whitaker to prepare as she executes her role with the Rays, keeping her wholly invested and consumed by baseball. There are occasions where she is afforded the luxury of reporting on Rays games for her Friday night assignment, but they are rare. Therefore, she needs to become familiar with two teams by reviewing statistics, reading local reporting and conversing with those involved. She keeps her notes on her cell phone and makes lists of what she is going to do during the day to keep herself organized and focused.

Throughout the week, Whitaker actively prepares for the Friday night matchup and meets with her producer to contribute her ideas and learn about the macro vision of the broadcast. The Apple broadcast, aside from using high-caliber technology, also regularly equips microphones to place on players that allow viewers to hear what is transpiring on the field. Whitaker, along with play-by-play announcer Alex Faust and color commentator Ryan Spilborghs, coordinate with the production team throughout the game to present an insightful and compelling final product.

There was criticism of the Apple TV+ live game baseball broadcasts during its inaugural season, but the noise continues to diminish in its sophomore campaign. Whitaker views her role as accruing a confluence of stories about the game and more insightful looks at the personalities on the field. Before each contest, she interviews a player in the dugout and asks questions that put the season in context, granting a comprehensive understanding about a subset of their journey.

“We try to get their thoughts on the season so far at the plate, but also try to get to know them on a personal level,” Whitaker said. “My role is to really bring the viewers down to that level of the dugout and into the clubhouse.”

It is considerably more facile to execute such a task before the game than it is during gameplay because of the introduction of the pitch clock. While it has undoubtedly sped up the game and made the product more appealing for fans of all ages, its actualization threatened the viability of unique aspects of baseball broadcasts. The Apple TV+ crew may work together once per week, but over a 162-game season spanning parts of seven months, there is a perdurable bond and unyielding chemistry evident therein.

“Everybody on that crew – and I seriously mean this – is so supportive no matter who you are as long as you do your job well,” Whitaker said. “They don’t even think about the fact that I’m a female in sports [and] they just support me. They help me take constructive criticism because they care and because they truly see me as an equal.”

Whitaker has had the chance to report from Wrigley Field with Apple TV+ and vividly remembers her experience of stepping inside as a media member for the first time. It was a surreal full-circle moment that has been the result of years of determination and persistence to make it to the major leagues.

“I walked into Wrigley and I started to tear up because I remember when my dad and I used to go there and I was 12 years old,” Whitaker stated. “If you would have told me at 12 years old [that] I would be doing a national game at Wrigley, I would have told you [that] you were lying because I just wouldn’t have thought that was a possibility.”

Although Whitaker is receptive to potentially hosting regular sports programming in the future, she has found the joy in her roles with both the Tampa Bay Rays and Apple TV+. Being able to experience historic moments, including Pujols’ milestone home run, and then diving deeper into the situation makes the countless flights, hotel stays and lack of a genuine respite worthwhile. She hopes to continue seamlessly fulfilling her responsibility this Friday night when the New York Mets face the Philadelphia Phillies at 6:30 p.m. EST/3:30 p.m. PST, exclusively on Apple TV+.

“There’s always a story to be told, and if you’re good at your job, you’re going to find that story even on a day where you’re like, ‘Oh gosh, there’s nothing going on,’” Whitaker said. “I take that pretty seriously.”

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading

BSM Writers

Radio Advertising Can be the Secret Weapon For In-House Digital Marketers

“The trend of businesses gaining digital marketing proficiency presents a unique opportunity for YOU.”

Jeff Caves



Courtesy: ETSY

Remember when in-house marketers were primarily focused on traditional media and needed help navigating the digital and social media landscape? Well, the tables are turning! 

The rise of digital-savvy in-house marketers is opening up exciting opportunities for radio ad salespeople. As local businesses increasingly invest in digital marketing, some are fiding they need your expertise in radio advertising.

Borrell Associates has released their latest Business Barometer, and included in the findings was a slight but noticeable shift favoring traditional forms of broadcast media. Let’s dive into how sports and news radio ad salespeople can leverage this shift to target businesses with proficient digital marketing people on board who may need to know more about the potential of radio advertising.

1. Digital-Marketing Trending UP!

Borrell Associates’ recent findings indicate that businesses are increasingly proficient in digital marketing. They are adeptly managing their websites and social media channels, driving results through online campaigns. However, this digital surge doesn’t necessarily translate to expertise in traditional media, such as radio. Hey, do you know a business like that? And make sure you know of an outsourced digital agency you can refer who can handle your clients’ digital and social media for very few dollars. You can help manage the rest of the budget! 

2. Target In-House Buyers

Make a list of businesses you know that have in-house people who are digital-oriented or younger owners who handle mostly digital advertising independently. Or, how about the in-house marketing person who only takes on marketing initiatives like events or sales promotion and knows nothing about advertising? Get ’em! 

3. We create demand

One of the unique selling points of radio is its ability to generate demand and send more customers to Google or your client’s website. Digital marketing can often direct buyers seeking a specific purchase but can’t create lasting impressions and build demand and loyalty like your station. Use this advantage to demonstrate how radio can reinforce the brand story and enhance the effectiveness of digital campaigns.

4. Surround the listener

Recognize that businesses with digital marketing expertise may want holistic solutions. Sell packages that combine digital and radio advertising. Include your streaming endorsements with social media and geo-fencing. They get it and will be impressed with reaching their target audience across multiple touchpoints.

5. Be the Teacher

Your prospects may be experts in digital marketing, but they might not fully understand the potential of radio advertising. Take on the role of an educator. Provide resources, case studies, and success stories that showcase how your station and radio have boosted digital-savvy businesses’ results.

6. 1+1=3 for Creativity

Collaboration is key when working with clients with a digital marketing team. Involve them in the creative process of writing and producing radio ads. Creativity could be their strength, and they will bring fresh perspectives to your production.

The trend of businesses gaining digital marketing proficiency presents a unique opportunity for YOU. Maybe your client is struggling with their digital strategy. Imagine that now they may be seeking you out to help them understand what they have already read about buying radio advertising. It’s time to adapt your approach and position radio as a complementary and powerful tool in the digital marketing person toolkit.

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading

BSM Writers

Bill Parcells Shaped The Media By Giving Them Hell

“Parcells doesn’t belong in a studio chatting with a quarterback. He belongs in a temper tantrum screaming at a sportswriter.”

John Molori



Bill Parcells
Courtesy: AP Photo

Two of the most talked about media stories of the past couple of weeks intersect in the form of one legendary NFL head coach – Bill Parcells. 

In the wake of Aaron Rodgers’ potentially season-ending Achilles injury in Week 1 of the NFL season, many media pundits harkened back to 1999 when then-Jets quarterback Vinny Testaverde suffered a similar injury in the first game of the season. Like Rodgers, Testaverde was a veteran signal-caller looking to bring the long-suffering Jets to a Super Bowl. 

One week after Rodgers’ injury, Los Angeles Chargers Head Coach Brandon Staley was in the media mechanism for an exchange with a reporter after his club fell to 0-2. Staley took issue with a query about whether the team’s monumental playoff collapse last season versus Jacksonville has carried over to their slow start this season. 

ESPN’s First Take included video of Staley’s comment on their September 19 show building it up as some rash, heated interaction between coach and press. It was not. In fact, Staley merely directly answered the question asserting this season has nothing to do with last season. 

Both of these headlines find common ground in the person of Bill Parcells. Parcells was the head coach of the Jets in 1999 when Testaverde’s season ended in that fateful game vs. New England. In addition, he was notorious for some truly vitriolic run-ins with post-game reporters. 

Forget about Staley or even the infamous press conference rants of Jim Mora (“Playoffs!?”), Herm Edwards (“You play to win the game!”), and Dennis Green (“Crown ‘em!”). To the media, Parcells was Armageddon, Three Mile Island, and Hurricane Katrina rolled into one. Never has there been a football character so inexplicably loved and despised. 

In New England, Parcells’s arrival as head coach of the Patriots in 1993 signaled the turnaround of the franchise, but fans refuse to vote him into the team’s Hall of Fame because of his unceremonious jump from to the Jets after the 1996 season. 

When that happened, Parcells again grasped the media spotlight stating, “If they want you to cook the dinner, at least they ought to let you shop for some of the groceries.” He was referring to new owner Bob Kraft taking final say personnel decisions away from Parcells.

Like him or not, Parcells, known as The Tuna, rejuvenated five NFL franchises. The New York Giants were a mishmash of Joe Pisarciks and Earnest Grays before Parcells turned them into two-time champions.

Patriot fans actually cheered for the likes of Hugh Millen and Eugene Chung until Parcells came to town and brought in players like Drew Bledsoe, Ty Law, Willie McGinest, Adam Vinatieri, and Tedy Bruschi, laying the foundation for a dynasty.

And the Jets? They were living off the fumes of Joe Namath’s Brut 33 until Bill Parcells constructed a team that went from 1-15 in 1996 under Rich Kotite to 9-7 and 12-4 in 1997 and 1998 respectively with Parcells. 

The Cowboys were 5-11 under Dave Campo in 2002. The next year, they went 10-6 with Parcells. Miami was 1-15 in 2007. The next year, with Parcells as executive VP of Football ops, they won the AFC East with an 11-5 record.

The Catholic church has its Apostle’s Creed. Those who follow the gospel of The Tuna have A Parcells Creed, and it goes as follows: I believe if a reporter asks Parcells if he outcoached a colleague, that reporter will be called a “dumb ass.” I believe that the media are “commies” and “subversive from within” as Parcells once labeled them.

I believe in using the media to denigrate young players to keep their egos in check. After Jets QB Glenn Foley had a solid preseason performance a few years back, the New York media surrounded the redheaded QB as if he had won the Super Bowl. 

Parcells walked right in front of Foley and sarcastically asked, “Do you mind if I get past Sonny Jurgensen over here,” referring to the similarly redheaded Redskin quarterbacking legend.

In 1995, when all of New England was agog over a rookie running back named Curtis Martin, Parcells slyly commented to the press, “Well, we’re not carving his bust for Canton just yet.” And of course, there was the late Terry Glenn. When asked how the former Patriot wideout was recovering from an injury, the Tuna spouted, “She’s doing just fine.”

Parcells’ stints as a studio analyst on ESPN, although insightful, seemed out of place. He would sit there, dressed in a dark blue suit talking strategy with fellow ESPN gabber Steve Young. Honestly, he looked like a rotund funeral director searching for someone to embalm.

Parcells doesn’t belong in a studio chatting with a quarterback. He belongs in a temper tantrum screaming at a sportswriter. 

I interviewed Boston media personality Steve DeOssie about Parcells. DeOssie was the defensive signal caller for the New York Giants (1989-93) when Parcells was the team’s head coach. He again played for Parcells in New England in 1994.

He told me, “Parcells realizes that the media is the enemy. Let’s face it, the media cannot do anything positive for a team, but they can put stuff out there that could lose a game. The bottom line with Parcells is whether it helps his team win.”

“He loves the camera and the camera loves him. He enjoys that part of the business. The media can spin it any way they want. Parcells does not suffer fools gladly and a lot of media types don’t like being called out in press conferences.”

Another Boston media legend also gave me his reflections of Parcells. Bob Lobel is the most revered sports anchor of all-time in New England. He stated, “I did a one-on-one interview with Parcells awhile back. He is so down to earth yet has this aura. It’s easy to be in awe of him.”

The national perspective is similar. When Troy Aikman was an analyst for FOX Sports, the current Monday Night Football color commentator credited Parcells with restacking the Cowboys’ roster and bringing winning back to Dallas.

When asked about playing for Parcells with the Jets, FS1’s Keyshawn Johnson offered, “He taught me how to do things, how to pay attention.” 

Even people whom Parcells fired maintain a respect for him. Sirius NFL Radio’s Pat Kirwan was the director of player administration for the Jets when Parcells arrived in 1997. 

Kirwan told me, “Parcells rebuilds a franchise from top to bottom. He evaluates everyone from the trainers to the doctors to the equipment guys. In 1997 when Bill came to the Jets, I knew I was qualified, but I also knew that Bill would let me go.”

In a September 12, 2023 story, New York Post reporter Brian Costello interviewed Parcells about the Rodgers injury. 

This master of media mind games famous for the quote, “You don’t get any medal for trying,” revealed his visceral core telling Costello, “You are charged with winning games under any circumstances … They’re not canceling the games. They’re not canceling them. You’re coaching them. It’s your job to get your team ready to play to the best of their ability.”

Sign up for the BSM 8@8

The Top 8 Sports Media Stories of the Day, sent directly to your inbox, every morning at 8am ET.

Invalid email address
We promise not to spam you. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Continue Reading

Barrett Media Writers

Copyright © 2023 Barrett Media.