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Detroit Sports 105.1 To Exit The Sports Format

Jason Barrett

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Major news out of Detroit. Greater Media has confirmed they are exiting the sports format on 105.1. The sports staff were informed on Wednesday night in a staff meeting that the radio station would air a temporary simulcast of Classic Rock WCSX’s Oldies format until a new format is officially announced. 105.1 made the flip into the sports format in August 2013.

“The change comes after much careful consideration of the direction of the station’s format and overall ratings over the past three years,” said VP and Market Manager Steve Chessare. “We would like to thank our dedicated listeners and the entire Detroit Sports 105.1 staff for their many contributions to the station in the Motor City. They are true professionals and we are very grateful to them.”

105.1 had been operating without a Program Director since Dave Shore was let go in May. He was terminated less than two years into his tenure, as was former PD Jason Dixon. Popular local personality Drew Lane was also dropped after just two years on the station’s airwaves.

Despite promises early on to give the brand five years to develop, Greater Media Detroit elected to change direction in less than three years. Rumors had been swirling for the past two months about a potential flip but company sources stressed they were optimistic about finding a new programmer to help the station take the next step.

How this will impact the on-air staff’s immediate ability to return to the airwaves and the Detroit Pistons radio rights agreement is unclear but it brings to an end the promise of a brand which had an opportunity to compete against market leader 97.1 The Ticket but never could seem to make enough traction to satisfy management. The Tigers and Lions rights became available during the station’s run but Greater Media Detroit were unsuccessful in landing those agreements.

With 105.1 leaving the sports format, WDFN is left as the only in-market competitor to The Ticket. However, WDFN has been a distant third in the ratings. The Ticket continues to perform among the top stations in the sports format across the country.

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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