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The Ticket Starts 2021 With Dallas Winter Book Victory

“The Ticket finished in front with a 4th place 6.2 share. The Fan was 9th with a 3.9. They added another 0.1 thru their stream for the quarter.”

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The Dallas market is always an interesting one to analyze for sports radio. Led by two great brands, 96.7/1310 The Ticket and 105.3 The Fan, listeners have strong programming options to consider, but getting them to break their habits remains a challenge. Case in point, in the month of March, only 15% of Ticket listeners sampled The Fan, and just 8% of The Fan’s audience flocked to The Ticket. That makes it clear that loyalty exists on both sides.

How that played out in the winter ratings book was better for The Ticket than The Fan. Though both stations were healthy, The Ticket finished in front with a 4th place 6.2 share. The Fan was 9th with a 3.9. They added another 0.1 thru their stream for the quarter.

The Musers were the winners in the morning drive competition. The Ticket’s talented morning team came in 3rd from 5:30a-10a thanks to a 6.3 share. The Fan’s Shan Shariff and RJ Choppy finished 9th with a 4.0 share. They tacked on another 0.2 courtesy of the stream.

Middays (10a-2p) were tighter than mornings, but once again The Ticket won the daypart. Norm Hitzges and Donovan Lewis, and two hours of Dan McDowell and Jake Kemp’s show took 4th with a 5.7 share. The Fan’s ‘K & C Masterpiece’ earned an 8th ranking with a 4.3 share, and another 0.1 on the stream.

The afternoon is where The Ticket enjoyed its best success for the quarter. One-hour of McDowell and Kemp, along with The Hardline featuring Corby Davidson and Bob Sturm delivered a 6.3 share 1st place finish. The Fan’s ‘GBag Nation’ was further back in 12th place with a 3.5 share, gaining another 0.1 on the stream.

A positive for The Fan this quarter was its cume story. The station produced 103,900 in weekday prime compared to The Ticket’s 63,500. The positive for The Ticket was their year to year growth. While The Fan’s numbers remained comparable to their 2020 results, The Ticket saw better than two point gains in weekday prime and morning and afternoon drive. Middays were also up by over a full point.

These two stations have traded places numerous times atop the ratings charts, so I’d expect nothing different going forward. This quarter belongs to The Ticket, thanks to strong consistent performances from their daytime lineup. A job well done by Jeff Catlin’s team. But with Rangers baseball back, and Cowboys season around the corner, expect the race to get tighter, not wider.

Sports Radio News

850 AM ESPN Cleveland Knocked Off Air Friday Due to Damaged Transmitter

The transmitter issues were fixed later in the day and ESPN Cleveland was back on the air shortly after 4 p.m. Friday.

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Sports radio station WKNR, 850 AM ESPN Cleveland, was off the air Friday morning due to a transmitter that was damaged during last Monday’s snowstorm.

As the station told listeners on Twitter and Facebook, ESPN Cleveland programming was still available on the ESPN app, The Land on Demand website, the TuneIn App, and smart speakers like Amazon Echo and Google Home.

So features like an NFL roundtable with the station’s Cleveland Browns analyst Tony Grossi could still be heard by ESPN Cleveland listeners, just not on the radio via 850 AM for most of the workday.

But the transmitter issues were fixed later in the day and ESPN Cleveland was back on the air shortly after 4 p.m. Friday, as announced on social media.

Afternoon drive-time listeners got to hear The Next Level with Emmett Golden, Jerod Cherry, and Matt Fontana on their way home from work. (Well, some listeners probably only got an hour’s worth of programming before the station powered down its signal at 5 p.m.)

As some listeners pointed out on Twitter, it seemed strange for the transmitter to break down four days after the snowstorm. But the damage obviously wasn’t an immediate problem and apparently something that deteriorated. Or it was an issue that needed to be addressed for the transmitter to continue working properly.

Monday’s snowstorm was no joke. Snowfall totals at the Cleveland airport were measured at 8.2 inches. The region was also battered by 35 mph winds, temperatures in the mid-20s, and wind chills in the teens. At least sports fans could listen to ESPN Cleveland at the time…

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Sports Radio News

TV Reporter Tori Yorgey Surprised By Eagles’ Brandon Graham During WIP Appearance

“This is the craziest early morning call I’ve ever had!”

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Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports/ Tori Yorgey Twitter

WSAZ-TV reporter Tori Yorgey became news last Thursday for getting hit by a car during a live shot on the West Virginia station. Despite what looked like a scary collision on television, Yorgey got up right away to let anchor Tim Irr and the viewing audience know that she was all right.

The following day, Yorgey, a Philadelphia native, was a guest on the 94WIP morning show as the “Winner of the Week” to talk about the incident. But host Angelo Cataldi made the interview even better by bringing on Yorgey’s favorite Philadelphia Eagles player, Brandon Graham.

“No way!” exclaimed Yorgey. “Oh my God, I love you!”

“You’re a trooper,” said Graham. “Like when performers fall down the stairs, the show must go on. That’s how you approached it.”

“Thank you so much,” Yorgey responded. “Whoa, this is the craziest early morning call I’ve ever had.”

Last week after video of Yorgey went viral, Graham’s Eagles teammate, Lane Johnson, said he’d send her a jersey.

Yorgey told fans on Twitter that she was “just a little sore” after the incident, but she’s still feeling discomfort in her right leg. As so many have pointed out, it could have been so much worse for her.

Amazingly, the on-air collision was one of the last assignments Yorgey covered for WSAZ. She’s moving on to Pittsburgh’s WTAE-TV, where she’ll be a nighttime reporter. Yorgey starts her new job on Feb. 1. There don’t appear to be any worries that she’ll become a Steelers fan, especially after talking to her favorite Eagles player on WIP.

“I hope you come to Philly instead of Pittsburgh,” said Graham toward the end of his call.

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Sports Radio News

Bob Ramsey Joins KFNS For Mid Day Show

“Bob Ramsey is a mainstay of sportscasting in St. Louis.”

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With Tim McKernan moving his shows to Hubbard’s St. Louis custer of stations, there has been some lineup shuffling going on at 590 AM, where his The Morning After used to occupy morning drive.

The latest move according to Dan Caesar of the St. Louis Post Dispatch, is the return of Bob Ramsey to sports talk radio in St. Louis. Ramsey will partner with Nate Lucas, who comes to town from Springfield, where he hosted a show on Jock 98.7 FM until he was fired in 2020 for making comments about Kamala Harris that were deemed offensive.

Bob Ramsey is a mainstay of sportscasting in St. Louis. His TV and radio career in the city date back 35 years, when he first took over as the play-by-play voice of the St. Louis University Billikens, a position he still holds today. He was also on the city’s first sports talk station, KGLD, when it launched in 1992.

Ramsey and Lucas will be on the air at KFNS from noon until two on the weekdays.

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