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Under The Radar – June 19, 2017

Jason Barrett

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The news keeps trickling in so this week we have 15 items to fill you in on. A reminder, it’s extremely helpful to us when you pass along news tips, press releases and social media links. That allows us to stay informed and keep the rest of the sports radio industry updated. If you have future information to pass along, please send it via email to JBarrett@hvy.tcp.mybluehost.me. Now on to the news!

A war of words escalated last week in the big apple between Craig Carton of WFAN and Peter Rosenberg of 98.7 FM ESPN NY. The spat began over differing views over LeBron James’ home being vandalized in Los Angeles. After Carton shared why certain parts of the story didn’t make sense to him, Rosenberg took exception. That then led to a caller bringing up Rosenberg ‘s rebuttal to Carton who fired back. Rosenberg then countered via a video post.

Staying in New York, the New York Post caught up with Brandon Tierney of CBS Sports Radio. The headline of the piece is sure to raise a few eyebrows, “Why I am not chasing Mike Francesa’s throne anymore.” To read the article click here.

A little further north in Albany, congrats are in order for Jeff Levack of 104.5 The Team. The afternoon host announced via social media that he’s signed a new 2-year contract to continue working for the radio station.

106.7 The Fan has announced they’ve reached agreement with Washington Redskins QB Kirk Cousins to once again contribute throughout the NFL season. Cousins will appear weekly with Grant and Danny for the third straight season. In addition, Cousins will appear on the station in July, two days after the deadline passes for the Redskins and Cousins to reach a long-term deal. Whether he does or doesn’t sign a new deal, he plans to give only one interview afterwards, and that will be to The Fan.

Shifting to the west coast, Tim Montemayor has joined 1580 The Fanatic in Phoenix. The sports radio veteran has previously worked in Chicago, San Francisco, St. Louis, Sacramento and Salt Lake City and is now hosting weekdays 12p-3p MT on the station. He made his weekday debut on June 5th.

An interesting look at the latest Toronto sports radio ratings was provided by Toronto Sports Media. In the latest book, The FAN 590 maintains a commanding lead over local competitor TSN 1050. The Fan’s highest rated performance was from 9a-12p when Jeff Blair and Baseball Central are on the air. The two stations have their closest contest between the hours of 1p-4p ET. Click here to see the full details.

In Vancouver, longtime Canucks writer Iain McIntyre has announced that he’s joining SportsNet in September. McIntyre will produce content for the company online and television. He’ll also contribute on radio once the company launches their new sports radio station SportsNet 650.

Westwood One has set their broadcast crew for the College World Series Finals June 26-28 live from Omaha. Kevin Kugler and Scott Graham will call the action, and 1620 the Zone’s John Bishop will contribute as field reporter for the series. Bishop serves as the voice of Creighton baseball and basketball and co-host’s The Zone’s afternoon show Unsportsmanlike Conduct.

Elsewhere in the network play by play space, Touchdown Radio has announced its 2017 college football schedule. This year’s broadcast team features Roxy Bernstein and Taylor Zarzour calling the action, and former Miami Hurricanes quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Gino Torretta providing analysis. To see the network’s full game schedule click here.

Congratulations is in order for 101 ESPN. The St. Louis sports radio station won the award for Best Original Programming at the 2017 Missouri Broadcasters Association Annual Convention. The piece of content which the station produced to earn recognition was their “Legends of the Dome Charity Flag Football Game” featuring a live game broadcast from the Edward Jones Dome which featured former members of the St. Louis Rams.

Greg Peterson is on the move. After spending the past year with 102.9/750 The Game in Portland as a producer and on-air contributor, Peterson has accepted an opportunity in Las Vegas with the Vegas Stats and Information Network (VSIN) which features Brent Musburger. He’s expected to serve as a producer and college basketball analyst.

Another off the air addition has been made in Houston. SB Nation Radio has added Christopher Tubbs as the new producer of GameNight with Matt Perrault. Tubbs will officially relocate to his new job on July 17th.

Sports Radio 610 in Houston debuted a new Saturday show this past weekend featuring Landry Locker and Matt Hammond. The duo teamed up from 1p-4p CT.

A new play by play announcer has been hired by Learfield Sports for Mississippi State football and men’s basketball games. Neil Price has been named the new voice of the Bulldogs. He takes over for Jim Ellis who retired in March.

Jason Myrtetus of 97.5 The Fanatic has announced plans to launch a new podcast titled Stick To Hockey. Myrtetus says he considered taking the plunge for the past few years and is finally ready to give it a go. The plan for the new audio offering is to provide discussion, debate, news, guests, and interaction on the coolest game on ice.

In the print world, the sale of Yahoo to Verizon has led to a few talented writers losing their positions. Among the affected include Kelly Dwyer and Eric Edholm of Yahoo Sports. Dwyer contributed to Ball Don’t Lie and Edholm to Shutdown Corner.

Sports Radio News

SURVEY: 16.9% of All Sports Radio Listeners Are Streaming

The survey found that in May 2022, 16.9% of sports talk radio’s audience tunes in via the station’s online stream. That news comes as Nielsen reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.

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Streaming Radio

According to Nielsen, All Sports radio stations are the third-most streamed spoken word format, just behind Talk/Personality and News/Talk/Info. The trend is continuing to show that streaming is on the uptick.

The survey found that in May 2022, 16.9% of sports talk radio’s audience tunes in via the station’s online stream. That news comes as Nielson reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.

Nielsen notes that in the 45 PPM markets they are grabbing data from and the 4,800+ stations that stream in those markets, just 30% of them are encoded. That encoding allows for Nielsen to accurately measure the streams. They used the listener data from 1,500 stations across the U.S., in its latest report, AM/FM Radio Streaming Growth in PPM Markets

The survey also showed that streaming levels differ widely by radio format. Spoken word formats display strong streaming listenership (Talk/Personality: 31.2%, News/Talk/Info: 19.1%, All Sports: 16.9%). In fact, Nielsen found that 1/3 of all AM/FM streaming in PPM markets is to spoken word formats.

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Sports Radio News

New Study Finds Listeners to MLB on Radio Are Willing to Spend

More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team… 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.

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MLB Radio

When it comes to advertiser’s attempting to reach an affluent and engaged audience, sports talk radio might have a whale on their hands. Major League Baseball play-by-play features an audience that has money and has no problems spending it.

In a recent MRI-Simmons study, data shows that consumers who listen to MLB broadcasts on the radio are the perfect audience for sports marketers. According to the analysis, done by Katz Radio Group, nearly two thirds (62%) of those surveyed consider themselves “super fans” of baseball. That number is 58% higher than the average.

Radio Listeners to MLB

Those “super fans” are willing to spend to support their team, as well. More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team. Those fans are also far more willing to make the trip to see their team. The study found that 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.

The news continues getting better for advertisers. Continued analysis reveals that 66% of listeners are currently employed and have a median household income greater than $106,000.

Listeners to MLB games on the radio are also 34% more likely to place a sports bet and 106% more likely to be a participant in fantasy baseball.

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Sports Radio News

Jeff Dean Signs Off At ESPN Tucson for The Final Time

Dean said on Facebook: “…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”

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Jeff Dean Show

Fans will no longer be able to tune into ESPN Tucson and hear Jeff Dean hosting his show. Friday morning was his last show, according to his Facebook and Twitter pages.

The Jeff Dean Show had been airing from 7-9a MT weekday mornings. Dean took to social media to relay the news and the reason behind him stepping away from the microphone. Dean said on Facebook:

“This morning I signed off from my radio show on ESPN Tucson for the final time. I have been devoting too much of my life and my time to working multiple jobs…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”

Jeff Dean Facebook

Dean went on to emphasize that he isn’t stepping away from ESPN Tucson, he’s just taking himself off the air. He also added that “gladly, I will be continuing my position as PA announcer of University of Arizona Football and Men’s basketball.”

Dean would also go onto Twitter to add even further context for his self-removal from the ESPN Tucson airwaves. He added, “It’s not a decision I arrived at hastily, as it’s been a 6 month mental grind to make the ultimate decision that had to be made, and I’m not particularly happy about it, but I have to put my health first, we all do, and make sure we’re around long enough to enjoy life”.

Dean had been ESPN Tucson’s morning host since November 2019.

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