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Under The Radar – October 18, 2016

Jason Barrett

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Here’s some news you might have missed over the past week. If you have any news to share please send it along to JBarrett@hvy.tcp.mybluehost.me.

670 The Score in Chicago has confirmed that Terry Boers is returning to his position in afternoons alongside Dan Bernstein effective Monday October 24th. Boers has been off the air since mid June dealing with a health issue. With the Cubs battling the Dodgers in the NLCS his timing couldn’t be better.

Good news for Cleveland sports radio fans. Adam The Bull isn’t going anywhere. Despite speculation that he was on the radar of WIP in Philadelphia, those rumors can be laid to rest. WIP is expected to announce their afternoon plans in the next few weeks.

Speaking of speculation, with Mike Francesa departing WFAN at the end of 2017, local newspapers in New York and Philadelphia are speculating that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie could be next in line to occupy the afternoon slot in New York City. WFAN Program Director Mark Chernoff has praised Christie’s ability to talk sports, and his tenure as Governor of New Jersey ends just three weeks after Francesa’s contract with WFAN expires. When a caller asked Francesa last week on the air about Christie he said “it sounds like he (Christie) might be leaving politics once his tenure with the state of New Jersey is over. I gather it’s something he’s interested in, and if it is, that’s something the station will have to decide.” With Francesa and Christie having 14 months left in their current positions, it’d be very surprising if any permanent decisions were announced in the near future.

ESPN 103.3 in Dallas has rounded out their weekday lineup. The station announced last week that Will Chambers has been named the new midday host alongside Jacques Jean-Taylor. In afternoons, Tim Cowlishaw and Steve Dennis have joined forces. Dennis previously hosted middays on the station with Mark Friedman who was let go last month along with former afternoon host Matt Mosley.

Washington Times sports columnist and ESPN 980 host Thom Loverro has been named to the Washington DC Boxing Hall Of Fame, along with former NewsChannel 8 sportscaster Glenn Harris. The two men will be inducted on November 11th.

Staying in the nation’s capital, the Washington Capitals and Washington Wizards have lost their FM outlets for the upcoming season. Capitals games will no longer air on 106.7 The Fan, and Wizards games won’t be heard on WDCH, 99.1. The broadcasts for both teams will continue airing on Hubbard’s WFED 1500 as well as on the Caps Radio 24/7 app and Wizards Mobile App. Both teams will remain on local television through their partnership with Comcast SportsNet.

WMC 790 AM in Memphis has added the Clay Travis Show to its lineup. The station will air the program tape delayed from 6a-9a CT. Clay will also appear each Monday on the Jason & John Show on Entercom Memphis’ leading sports station 92.9 ESPN.

Former 95.7 The Game in San Francisco midday hosts Guy Haberman and John Middlekauff have launched a new podcast. You can hear it or subscribe to it by clicking here.

The Los Angeles Kings will use four veteran play-by-play announcers while Hall of Famer Bob Miller reduces his on-air role during his 44th year on the air. Miller is scheduled to call 58 games (including all home games) this season plus the first-round of the playoffs. Gary Thorne (eight games), Chris Cuthbert (four games), Ralph Strangis (four games) and Jiggs McDonald (one game) will work alongside of Jim Fox during the remainder of Kings games this season.

Although it’s unlikely, there’s a possibility that the New York Mets could lose a member of their broadcast team. The contract for play by play man Gary Cohen is set to expire at the end of 2016. SNY, which runs the Mets television broadcasts and Cohen’s representatives, have discussed a new multi-year deal but nothing has been finalized yet.

Sports Radio News

16.9% of All Sports Radio Listeners Are Streaming

The 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, 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 their 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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