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It’s Green Light Go For The 2022 BSM Summit in NYC

“I’m not promising you we’ll solve every issue facing the industry during the course of two-days together in NYC, but I’ve always believed that smart people recognize the benefit of being around and listening to other smart people.”

Jason Barrett




I’m a firm believer in getting right to the point, so I’m going to start this column off by making one thing perfectly clear: The 2022 BSM Summit IS taking place in New York City on March 2-3, 2022 at the Anne Bernstein Theater. If you’ve thought about attending the show, tickets are on sale at If you’re unable to travel but still want to enjoy the show, we also have a virtual ticket available. Regardless, we will proceed as scheduled, and do all we can to bring people together safely to learn, network, and celebrate the industry.

I don’t believe in telling anyone how they should handle their personal decisions involving vaccinations. We’ve all read plenty of information and have listened to enough medical experts to form decisions about what we each feel is right for us. However, the Anne Bernstein Theater in accordance with New York State guidelines requires anyone attending to be vaccinated. If you’ve not taken that step, I respect your choice, but I don’t make the rules. This means you won’t be able to join us inside the theater. You can still enjoy the show virtually though. I’m looking forward to the day when this isn’t a conversation, and we can interact without worrying about each other’s medical choices. But since it is part of life in 2022, I want to address it so there’s no confusion on what is and isn’t permitted.

Putting together this conference hasn’t been easy. Finding speakers and creating a variety of sessions that appeal to a mixture of executives, programmers, market managers, talent and agents across the sports media industry is always a challenge, but that’s an area I excel in. I’m very happy with the group we’ve put together for March’s event and can’t thank everyone enough who’s agreed to give their time to be part of the show. However, being a predictor of how NY state and the United States will handle Covid developments is a whole other issue.

The last time I hosted the Summit was in late February 2020. A few weeks later, the world changed. Because of the risk factors and the uncertainty of so much, we skipped doing a live show in the first quarter of 2021. I planned initially to move the conference to a virtual event in September 2021, but when I shared that news with clients, friends, and industry peers, it was clear that doing a virtual only event wasn’t the same for everyone. The enthusiasm for it wasn’t high.

I learned that it mattered to a number of people to experience this conference live. They wanted the ability to network, learn in person, and meet others who they’ve read about. Coupled with Zoom overload and industry professionals being confined to homes and offices as a result of Covid rocking the nation, people wanted to get out, interact, and pick up ideas and information to get better.

So we changed gears. I moved back the show to March 2-3, 2022 and decided to launch a hybrid event. We’d do the Summit live in NYC, but also for the first time, present it virtually since I anticipated some wouldn’t be comfortable traveling and others who didn’t live near NY may want to check it out remotely before making plans to attend in person down the road. Another added benefit, we’d be able to provide an online pass to all attending in person so they could watch the show on-demand later. I often get asked for video of the event or specific materials from it. Now, that option will be available.

As the summer and fall months passed, everything looked to be on track. The world wasn’t normal like it was in 2019, but people were attending games, going to stores and the movies, and flying on planes to do business or enjoy time away.

Then came November and December 2021.

The news about Omicron started to pick up, and everyone rightfully so began to take caution. Mask mandates were installed again, cases were rising, and it appeared the country might be in for a bad second wave. Fortunately, this virus was weaker, and the impact less severe. In the weeks that have since passed, people have been more vocal about living their lives as they wish while being as safe as they can. The risk of getting sick has not gone away but the fear of it being deadly has changed. Just look at the past week’s attendance in Los Angeles and Kansas City for NFL playoff games.

Having been to NYC a few times over the past few months, and having traveled to other cities for work projects, I know there are ways to do things effectively while also being safe. This business rapidly changes, and it has gone thru a massive wave of challenges over the past two years. If I can gather a number of smart people in a room to share insight, ideas and examples to help others run their businesses better then I’m going to do what I can to help.

I’m not telling anyone how they should feel about this. If you’re not comfortable coming to the show and being around others, or flying on a plane or sleeping in a hotel in another city, that’s understandable. I respect how you feel. But I also know there are others who have different views and I’m going to respect them too.

So we move forward and continue to work on putting together a fun, informative two-day experience for all who join us. I’m excited to add Kevin Graham, PD of KNBR in San Francisco, Rod Lakin, PD of Sports Radio WIP in Philadelphia, Raj Sharan, PD of 104.3 The Fan in Denver, Dave Tepper, PD of Altitude Sports Radio 92.5 in Denver, and Sandy Cohen, VP and Director of Sales for Union Broadcasting in Kansas City, Louisville and Wichita to this year’s show. I’m equally grateful to Westwood One, Good Karma Brands, Hubbard Radio, Benztown Branding and Beasley Media Group for signing on as Summit sponsors. The industry support for our 2022 show has been outstanding and it truly means a lot. We have only a few opportunities left, so if you’re interested in being associated with the Summit, drop an email to Sa***@Ba****************.com.

I will be announcing this year’s recipients of The Mark Chernoff Award and The Champion’s Award in the next few weeks. Those two will join Traug Keller as our 2022 winners. Traug has already been revealed as this year’s recipient of The Jeff Smulyan Award. I’ve also got a few additional speakers to announce who will contribute to our Sports Betting, and GM panels, and one or two additional surprises as well. If all goes according to plan, we’ll release the full show schedule next week.

Not to be forgotten, I’ll be sharing details soon for a special contest for college students to earn a few free tickets to the show. I’ll also be revealing the winners of the email and social media contest I announced over the past few days for industry professionals.

I know it’s been a chaotic time for many across the industry. I’m not promising you we’ll solve every issue facing the industry during the course of two-days together in NYC, but I’ve always believed that smart people recognize the benefit of being around and listening to other smart people. If you only see a path to success based on the way it’s designed inside your company, you’re closing yourself off to other possibilities. If you can gain insight from others to avoid one or two pitfalls or gain one or two tips to do something better, isn’t that worth your time?

Each time I go thru the planning of this event, I’m reminded of how much some people care, and how little others don’t. I don’t host this show to get rich, boost my ego or strengthen my professional relationships with clients or potential partners. I do it to try and help brands and bring people together. There’s a lot of great people doing great work in this industry, and if we can spare two days to learn from them and recognize some of the greats who’ve paved the way for us, that benefits us all. If you agree, I’ll see you in 28 days in NYC or in our virtual room on March 2nd and 3rd. Now back to counting and designing images for next week’s BSM Top 20!

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Rachel Nichols and Baron Davis Headline Final Speaker Announcements For the 2023 BSM Summit

“I’m sure Baron and Rachel will have all eyes and ears focused on them when they take the stage together next Tuesday at 2:45pm PT.”

Jason Barrett




The 2023 BSM Summit schedule is set. After months of planning and talking to everyone across the industry, I’m ecstatic to roll out next week’s agenda including making one final announcement involving seven great additions to our conference.

For starters, it is a pleasure to welcome Showtime’s Rachel Nichols to the BSM Summit. I’ve admired her work on television for years, and am thrilled to have her guiding a session which I think many in the room are going to really enjoy.

Rachel’s guest will be former NBA star Baron Davis. Baron runs his own company, Baron Davis Enterprises, and he has been active in investing in media brands, and exploring ways to evolve the industry. Among his areas of passion, athletes taking more control of their brands, and the media industry needing to improve its track record with diversity. I’m sure Baron and Rachel will have all eyes and ears focused on them when they take the stage together next Tuesday at 2:45pm PT.

Also joining the Summit are a few longtime industry friends. For starters, VSiN’s program director Jon Goulet is someone who I’ve known and worked with, and he understands the sports betting audio space extremely well. Jon and BetQL VP of Programming Mitch Rosen will spend time with another industry friend, Bryan Curtis of The Ringer. Collectively they’ll examine the state of sports betting audio on Tuesday March 21st from 3:35p-4:10p, and what they look for when it comes to sports betting talent, and how they determine what is and isn’t success in the sports gambling content world.

With Mitch taking part in the sports betting panel, Jeff Rickard of WFNZ in Charlotte steps into The Programmer’s Panel alongside Jimmy Powers, John Mamola and Raj Sharan. The session is scheduled for Wednesday March 22nd from 9:10a-9:45a PT. Ironically, all four of these programmers work for different companies, so it’ll be interesting to hear how they differ and where they align while navigating through a few sports radio programming topics.

Next, I’m excited to introduce a social media session with Karlo Sy Su of ESPN Los Angeles and Matthew Demeke of AM 570 LA Sports. If you look at the performance of their brands on Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, and Facebook, they’ve each delivered strong audiences and engagement. I’m looking forward to hosting this one and learning about their processes, how they decide which platforms to focus on most, what they consider a social media win when analyzing social statistics, and how they develop their content process. Given our location, we’re calling the session ‘Social Media Goes Hollywood‘. It’s scheduled for Wednesday March 22nd from 3:35-4:10 PT.

I realize you’re not going to remember all of these session speakers and times off the top of your head, so to make it easier, log on to and scroll down past our speakers. That’s where you’ll find our detailed list of sessions/times and activities planned each day. We have eighteen sessions, two awards ceremonies, and two parties. Our kickoff party is presented by the WWE and takes place Monday March 20th from 7p-9p at the 1880 Founders Room. The ESPN Radio After Party takes place Tuesday March 21st from 6p-8p at the Lab Gastropub. Both party locations are in walking distance of the USC Hotel and our conference venue.

As an added bonus, thanks to the generosity of our friends at WWE, we will be giving away a pair of tickets to the first night of WrestleMania, and a WWE title at our kickoff party. WrestleMania takes place this year in Los Angeles at Sofi Stadium on March 25-26. You must be present at the kickoff party to win either prize.

We’ll have more to share next week including providing an ongoing blog with session news and notes for our readers. We’ll also have a ton of content available on our social media channels so if you’re not following @BSMStaff on Twitter, @BarrettSportsMedia on Facebook or @BarrettMedia on LinkedIn, what are you waiting for?

The focus now shifts to finishing our creative for next week’s show, sending information to our speakers for their sessions, and finalizing our attendees list. For those who are attending, we’ll be sending out an email on Friday or Saturday with a complete list of names of who’s coming so you can plan meetings in advance.

If you forgot to buy your ticket after seeing months of promotion about the event and meant to do so, you can still do that, but it costs more. Students on the other hand can take advantage of a low rate established for college kids at

Putting this event together isn’t easy, but I’m extremely pleased with how it’s come together. We have a lot of smart, talented, and accomplished people making time to be part of this, and I appreciate each and every one of them for doing so. Now, it’s all about the execution. Hope to see you next week in LA.

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Sports Broadcasting Icon Al Michaels To Be Honored at the 2023 BSM Summit

“This is a man who has spent more than five decades on your television screen calling the biggest games, and producing some of the most iconic moments sports has to offer.”

Jason Barrett




If you work in the sports media industry you’ve likely heard someone along the way utter the phrase “don’t bury the lead“. I’m usually good about following that advice but I didn’t do that at our 2022 BSM Summit.

We introduced the greatest tandem in sports radio history, Mike Francesa and Chris ‘Mad Dog’ Russo and it was a special half hour. Mike and the Mad Dog were reunited after seven years apart and every individual at the event knew they were witnessing something magical on stage. I created a Mike and the Mad Dog Award for the event, which went to Felger and Mazz, who were the absolute right choice to win it. Even Chris remarked ‘that’s the right call‘.

But I learned quickly that although the intention was right in honoring the industry’s current top performing show, when you have legends in the room and they’re in their element, the last thing you want to do is overcrowd them. The connection Mike and Chris had on the air became the gold standard by which we measure successful sports talk shows, and they didn’t need an award created to deliver a special moment, just two mics and 20-30 minutes of stage time.

As I began thinking about the 2023 BSM Summit, I knew there was an opportunity to build on what we started last year with Mike and Chris, and after talking to a few people who I trust and respect, the decision of who we would recognize became crystal clear. I believe it’s important to honor the greats in our business because those who leave a permanent mark on our industry deserve it. The man we’ve selected has spent more than five decades on your television screen calling the biggest games, and producing some of the most iconic moments sports has to offer. He’s worked with the best of the best inside the booth, has helped elevate the presentation and execution of in-game content for ABC, NBC and Amazon, and his call of the Miracle on Ice, the US Olympic hockey team’s 1980 gold medal win over Russia remains one of the best calls in the history of sports.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I am honored and privileged to share that Al Michaels will join us on Wednesday March 22nd at the 2023 BSM Summit for our awards presentation, where we will present him with BSM’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Michaels is one of America’s most respected sports broadcasting voices, known for his exceptional work on Monday Night Football (1986-2005), Sunday Night Football (2006-2022) and Thursday Night Football (2022-Present). He’s called the Super Bowl, World Series, NBA Finals, Stanley Cup Finals, Hagler-Hearns, the Olympics, the Indy 500, Horse Racing’s Triple Crown races, College Football and Basketball games, Golf, and more. He’s even held roles as the voice of the University of Hawaii, the Cincinnati Reds, and the San Francisco Giants, and was in the booth in 1989 when an earthquake rocked the Bay Area during Game 3 of the A’s-Giants world series.

The Brooklyn native turned Los Angeles resident has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and owns a ton of hardware including five sports Emmy’s, three NSMA Sportscaster of the Year honors, the 2013 Pete Rozelle Radio & Television Award distributed by the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and the 2021 Ford C. Frick Award given out by the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame. Though his trophy case may be full, we’re excited to add another to his collection to show our appreciation and respect for the impact he’s made on the sports media business.

A quick reminder, the BSM Summit takes place on Tuesday March 21st and Wednesday March 22nd at the Founders Club at the University of Southern California. Tickets are on-sale at

Be advised, we have started adding sessions and times on the website. As always, the schedule is subject to change. Our final agenda will be posted by the end of next week. In addition, attendees will receive an email by next Friday with details of who will be in attendance. We hope to see you there.

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Rob Parker, Brian Long, Sean Thompson and Matt Fishman Join The BSM Summit Speaker Lineup

“I’m excited to welcome a few folks who have enjoyed success in different parts of the country, and in different areas of the business.”

Jason Barrett




As we gear up for our 5th annual BSM Summit on March 21-22, 2023, I’m starting to get a better feel for how the final puzzle may look. When this process starts I have no idea how it’s going to turn out because so much depends on who says yes and no. Many who’ve attended over the years have complimented our lineups, and I appreciate it because I put a lot of time and effort into featuring a strong mix of professionals from different areas of the industry. Though I’m proud of the work we do and the schedule we deliver, there are so many things pursued leading up to the event that I can’t help but wonder ‘what if this or that had worked out?’

One thing that some folks don’t understand if they haven’t been to the show before is that this is not a talent conference. It’s a sports media business conference. That means we feature radio, TV and digital executives, programmers, researchers, sales professionals, and yes, talent. I believe on-air performers are vital to the industry’s success and I want the best of the best sharing their wisdom with everyone in the room, but we’re also not going to do two full days of on-air conversations. Being successful in sports media requires understanding the on-air side and the business side, and we do our best to offer a blend of both.

For today’s announcement, I’m excited to welcome a few sports media pros who have enjoyed success in different parts of the country, and in different areas of the business.

First, Rob Parker is someone who has made a name for himself as a radio host, writer, TV commentator, and teacher. He’s currently heard weeknights on FOX Sports Radio, teaches students at USC Annenberg, writes for Deadspin, and is helping MLBBro gain awareness and a bigger mainstream media presence covering Major League Baseball. He’s experienced, smart, and never short on opinion. I’m looking forward to having him join Mitch Rosen of 670 The Score/BetQL, and Scott Shapiro of FOX Sports Radio for a session titled “Aircheck On Campus“. They’ll take the stage together on Wednesday March 22nd from 2:10-2:45.

My next three speakers, all come from the sports radio programming department.

Matt Fishman is the Director of Content for ESPN 850 Cleveland. Fishman has been with the brand since January 2020 following stints at SiriusXM, 610 Sports in Kansas City, and 670 The Score in Chicago. He even wrote for BSM for a few years.

Sean Thompson is responsible for programming decisions at Arizona Sports and ESPN 620 AM. He joined the well respected Phoenix brand after more than a decade in Atlanta at 92.9 The Game. Sean has also worked in affiliate relations for Westwood One, and on the air and as a programmer in music radio for Good Karma Brands in Madison, WI.

Brian Long is the program director of both San Diego Sports 760 and KOGO 600 in San Diego. In addition to guiding two of the top talk brands in his market, he has also managed Seattle Sports 710, and served as the Assistant Program Director for ESPN LA 710.

Matt, Sean, and Brian will be part of one of our final sessions on day two of the Summit. The Last Call which yours truly is hosting, will explore unique revenue opportunities created by local brands, and examine a few new ideas and missed opportunities that brands and managers may want to take advantage of in the future.

As of today, the Summit has more than forty accomplished professionals taking the stage at the Founders Club at USC’s Galen Center on March 21-22, 2023. I’ve got a few others still to announce as well, including a few cool giveaways planned for the WWE’s Kickoff party.

If you haven’t bought a ticket and wish to be in the room, visit The last day for ticket sales will be Monday March 13th. I’m hoping to release our final schedule of sessions on Tuesday March 14th. Hopefully I’ll see you in the city of angels.

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