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Eric Wood Headed To Bills’ Radio Booth

“After playing his entire nine-year NFL career in Buffalo, Wood was forced to retire at the end of the 2017 season following a neck injury.”

Brandon Contes

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The Buffalo Bills announced former Pro-Bowl center, Eric Wood will be rejoining the team in the broadcast booth, as their lead radio analyst this upcoming season.

Replacing Mark Kelso, Wood will partner with play-by-play voice, John Murphy on Entercom’s Bills Radio Network, which includes their flagship station WGR Sports Radio 550.  Kelso worked with Murphy on Bills Radio from 2006 – 2018.  Murphy is a longtime Bills broadcaster, having served two previous tenures as their radio analyst from 1984 – 1989 and again from 1994 – 2003. 

In addition to working on their gameday broadcast, Wood will also regularly contribute to One Bills Live, a weekday radio show on WGR hosted by Murphy and the team’s legendary wide receiver, Steve Tasker.

“Eric brings to our content team the same work ethic that made him a fan favorite during his time in a Bills uniform,” said Mark Preisler, executive VP of media and content for Pegula Sports and Entertainment, according to The Buffalo News.  “He is eager to share his knowledge of the game with our fans through our various media outlets. The fact he remains so close with our team will make his insight into every play on game days invaluable in the radio booth.”

After playing his entire nine-year NFL career in Buffalo, Wood was forced to retire at the end of the 2017 season following a neck injury.  Wood showed media savvy during his playing days with a willingness to offer a good postgame quote and contributing to a regular segment on WGR.  In his first season away from the field, Wood worked as a columnist for the Athletic. 

“I consider myself extremely fortunate to have spent my entire NFL career with the Buffalo Bills,” Eric Wood said. “Buffalo’s community, fans and organization are incredibly special to me and I am very proud to begin my broadcasting career with the people who provided so much support for so many years.”

In addition to taking on the role of lead analyst for the Bills Radio Network, Wood also signed on with the new ACC Network.  Wood’s weekend during football season will be very busy, working college games on Saturday for the ACC Network and almost immediately flying to join the Bills and call their game on Sunday. 

“This isn’t something that I just wanted to dip my toe into the water,” Wood said in the announcement.  “I figured if I wanted to be great at something, if I wanted to truly see if this is where my passion lies, I’ve got to go all in. So I’m looking forward to this fall, doing both, doing TV with ACC Network, doing radio with the Bills and some other media content with the Bills. I think it will be a fun fall.”

Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.

Sports Radio News

Paul Finebaum: ESPN, FOX Have Power To Tank EA Sports College Football Video Game

“Paul Finebaum had high praise for what the video game has meant to college football.”

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Paul Finebaum

The power brokers in college football now are the media. In particular, it is ESPN, who is set to take over the SEC’s media rights and FOX, who controls the Big Ten’s media rights. Paul Finebaum said recently on the Dynasty Mode podcast that those relationships give the two networks major control over college football.

Dynasty Mode is a podcast about EA Sports’ popular college football video game series hosted by BSM writers Arky Shea and Demetri Ravanos. Finebaum told the pair that if either ESPN and FOX or the Big Ten and the SEC don’t want to work together, the video game, which will return to store shelves in 2023 after a ten-year absence from the market, could be doomed.

“We’re a year removed from an absolute certainty, that was a 12 school playoff for the CFP, getting shot down for the very same reason,” he said. “So if they can shoot down the most important entity in college sports, I think they can shoot down this.”

Paul Finebaum had high praise for what the video game has meant to college football. He told Shea and Ravanos that he hopes power brokers at schools and networks realize that.

“I think it’s been very important and I don’t know how many people that are in those power five seats think about stuff like that.”

In the early 2000s, Tony Bruno brought a fictionalized version of his radio show to EA Sports’ Madden NFL series. Finebaum said he had not been approached yet by EA to do something similar for the new college football video game.

“I’m really surprised they haven’t because it would be a big money-making operation, at least for me. I don’t know about for them, but I am happy to participate,” Finebaum joked.

He added that the real value to EA Sports would be his audience. They could give the game a level of authenticity that many fans have missed as college football becomes a more corporate entity.

“You can replace me, but you can’t replace the callers. They are the most unique, and I think it takes a lot of work to nurture callers like that. I’m not campaigning for EA because I have people to do that for me,” he said. “Point being, what makes college sports what it is? It’s the fans. It’s not the fat cats that buy the one million or two million dollar suites. It’s not the people sitting with the president. It’s the rank and file that probably never get to campus.”

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Sports Radio News

Matt Chernoff: WFAN’s Sal Licata ‘Doesn’t Have The Guts’ to Appear On 680 The Fan Again

“He doesn’t have the guts to come on again. After what happened last time? You think he wants that again? Why the hell would he want that?”

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Would WFAN’s Sal Licata join Chuck and Chernoff on 680 The Fan in Atlanta again? According to Matt Chernoff, no.

During a May appearance on SNY, Licata declared the National League East race over, saying the New York Mets had wrapped up the division. The Atlanta Braves then proceeded to win 14 consecutive games. The Mets currently hold a seven game lead over the Braves in the division.

After the 14 game winning streak, Chuck and Chernoff had Licata on their show to confront him about the opinion, and things got slightly heated, with Chernoff and Licata eventually yelling at each other, before cooler heads prevailed.

The two hosts rekindled their disdain for one another after the Mets won four of five games against the Braves over the weekend, with the two trading barbs on Twitter. Licata joked Chernoff should hope the New York host doesn’t move to Atlanta to win a ratings battle, and called Chernoff a clown before deleting the tweet. He later tweeted “Funny. No invites from Atlanta sports talk radio today,” accompanied by a should shrug emoji. That caught the attention of Chernoff, who addressed it to open his show Monday.

“He (Licata) won’t come on,” Chernoff said. “He doesn’t have the guts to come on again. After what happened last time? You think he wants that again? Why the hell would he want that? He made a fool of himself and then lied about it to his own fans. There’s a reason he didn’t play the audio on his dumb little show. And next time when he’s an hour late, they have that to play instead. I mean, honestly, if he wants to come on, come on. He has no interest. He does not want this smoke.”

@680thefan

Chernoff has had enough of loud mouth Sal Licata of #wfan #braves #mets

♬ original sound – 680 The Fan

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Sports Radio News

Sports Gambling Podcast Network To Stage 24-Hour Fantasy Football Draft

“The event begins at 3 pm on Tuesday and is dubbed Draft Day 2.0.”

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Sports Gambling Podcast

If you’re serious about Fantasy Football, the Sports Gambling Podcast Network is bringing back a tradition you’ll want to pay attention to. 

For the second year in a row, Ryan Kramer will draft 24 different teams over the course of a 24 hour marathon that will be streamed across multiple video platforms. 

“Fortunately, the analytics research is done so I can focus now on news coming out of the camps to sharpen my views and deliver the well-reasoned selections that people need to get an edge in their drafting,” Kramer said in a press release. “It’s a bit of an audacious undertaking, but the growing phenomenon of Fantasy Football deserves this level of commitment and our SGPN audiences always respond.” 

The event begins at 3 pm on Tuesday and is dubbed “Draft Day 2.0”. All of the content will originate from the Sports Gambling Podcast Network’s studios in Los Angeles. 

The marathon will also be a fundraiser. The network is using GoFundMe to raise funds for a colleague named Darryl injured in a motorcycle accident earlier this year. A portion of proceeds generated from the sale of Sports Gambling Podcast Network branded apperal will also go to the effort. 

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