Sports Radio News
Michigan State Broadcaster Earle Robinson Dies
“During his career, Robinson called MSU football and basketball, also pioneering the station’s first call-in radio show, Sportstalk.”
Iconic sports radio broadcaster in Lansing, MI, Earle Robinson passed away at the age of 71 over the weekend. The local-legend was a fixture on Michigan State University’s public radio station, WKAR from 1974 until his retirement in 2013.
Robinson’s passing garnered the attention of many, including Magic Johnson, who called the sportscaster a “dear friend” in a trio of Tweets.
In 2004, Robinson was inducted into the Greater Lansing Area Sports Hall of Fame. “You couldn’t go to any sporting event and not see Earle Robinson there,” Hall of Fame director, Bob Every told Eric Lacy of the Lansing State Journal. “This guy was all over town.”
During his career, Robinson called MSU football and basketball, also pioneering the station’s first call-in radio show, Sportstalk. Robinson is remembered as an inspirational figure, always having a smile on his face and working to help young people of color break into broadcasting.
“When you see someone that looks like you doing what you want to do and having success at it, it inspires you,” said Al Martin, host of Current Sports on WKAR. “And that’s what Earle did for me.”
Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.
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.
Sports Radio News
Jon Ritchie: ‘Not Realistic’ for Mike Florio to Expect Answers From Howie Roseman
“I think your ask of Howie is ridiculous for him.”
Things got contentious this week on Pro Football Talk Live. Howie Roseman would not answer Mike Florio’s direct questions about tampering. Jon Ritchie listened to the audio Wednesday morning on 94 WIP and put the blame on Florio.
Before the NFL Draft, the NFL ruled that the Arizona Cardinals were guilty of tampering with then-Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon the week that the Eagles were in Arizona for Super Bowl LVII. Gannon was named head coach of the Cardinals the next day.
When Florio asked Roseman about it, Roseman offered what sounded like a prepared statement saying that it did not make sense for the Eagles to dwell on the past. Instead, he thanked Gannon for his work for the team and said that any tampering penalties and arguments were “made at the ownership level.”
While that answer did not satisfy Ritchie’s partner Joe DeCamara, Ritchie said that he isn’t sure what Florio or anyone else would expect Howie Roseman to say in that situation.
“I don’t think it’s realistic to expect Howie to put his heart out and give his true feelings. He doesn’t want to come out against the league,” he said.
The duo played more audio from the exchange in which Florio accused Howie Roseman of deflecting and asking if he would like to read his talking points for a third time. Roseman shot back that Florio is easily on a list of the NFL’s top 5 conspiracy theorists.
Just how contentious things actually were can be debated, but according to Jon Ritchie, one of them deserves more criticism than the other.
“I thought Florio came across as rude yesterday,” he said. “I think your ask of Howie is ridiculous for him. We’re standing up like an adult and sticking to our guns, the high-road guns, and I appreciate that. Think of what you’re asking Howie to do, like take aim at the league…That’s not realistic.”
Sports Radio News
Fred Toucher: ‘ESPN is Now Just 3 People’
“Stephen A. Smith is on in the morning. He’s on the radio. He does a podcast. He’s at all the games. He does the postgames.”
How deep is the talent rotation at ESPN? Not very according to Fred Toucher. The 98.5 The Sports Hub morning host has certainly noticed that the network is turning to a small handfull of stars to do the bulk of the work.
“ESPN is now like three people, and Stephen A. Smith is on in the morning. He’s on the radio. He does a podcast. He’s at all the games. He does the postgames,” morning host Fred Toucher said. “Imagine if we had a microphone in front of us 12 hours a day…The guy’s going to snap one time.”
That led to a new segment on Toucher & Rich titled “Stephen A. Smith is horny” with music by R&B artist Barry White playing in the background. Throughout the nearly 20-minute aside, the show played clips from Smith’s Cadence 13-produced podcast recently renamed The Stephen A. Smith Show, and spoke about how he is now giving dating advice to close out episodes of his show.
“My man can’t help getting horny on it every single episode,” Jon Wallach said. “He is trapped with a microphone in front of him 18 hours a day – he really is. He’s on TV and the radio and podcast. It doesn’t stop.”
Because of Smith’s busy schedule across ESPN programming – including First Take, NBA Countdown, NBA in Stephen A’s World and guest appearances on shows such as SportsCenter and Get Up – he seems to be over the airwaves more often than not. On top of that, he hosts new episodes of his podcast at least three times a week. He has said the network did research that found he had reached 1.7 billion people on ESPN’s YouTube page last year, and that the number is expected to hit 2.4 billion at the end of this year.
The Boston morning show surmised that since Smith hardly has moments away from his profession, he cannot help but to talk about topics such as dating advice to vary the content.
“He just loves to drop into that sexy – ‘We’re going to do dating advice because everyone’s reaching out for dating advice from Stephen A. Smith,’” Toucher said.
Sports Radio News
Evan Roberts Says WFAN Found Next Star in Audition This Week
Evan Roberts thinks he has heard the future of WFAN. The co-host of Carton & Roberts said Tuesday afternoon that an overnight audition he heard on the station is going to yield big results.
Roberts said he could not sleep on Monday night, so he turned on the station to hear a new voice on the air and he was impressed.
“Alvin was on the air from midnight to two, and I’m going to make your prediction. He will be full-time here in the next three years,” he said. “Very good. He was tremendous.”
The Alvin in question is Alvin Cintron. He is a listener that Carton & Roberts explained would make videos and send them to program director Spike Eskin with a note asking when he would get his shot on WFAN.
“I listened to about 45 minutes of it,” Roberts said. “First radio show ever! I think the story is Spike literally found the guy on social media and said, ‘You know what? I’ll give you a shot.’”
Cintron posted a video on Facebook of himself listening to the segment. He called it “surreal.”
Craig Carton joked that if Evan Roberts thinks Alvin Cintron is going to be part of WFAN’s full-time staff in the next three years, that means he has someone on the staff getting fired and that Alvin is going to jump ahead of the current WFAN part-timers working towards the same goal.
“I didn’t put anybody down,” Roberts answered. “All I said was I thought he was brilliant last night, and I’m making a prediction. I think within the next three years, he’s full time.”