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Sports Radio News

Under The Radar – November 15, 2016

Jason Barrett

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News continues to be made throughout the sports radio universe. To be included in a future column, please send over any important announcements via email to JBarrett@hvy.tcp.mybluehost.me.

590 The Fan KFNS in St. Louis is making changes to its lineup. The radio station is moving it’s current afternoon show “We Are Live” to middays from 2p-4p ET in order to install former Blues forward and local product Cam Janssen, former Mizzou receiver T.J. Moe, radio host Eric Messersmith, and Hanna Yates, a recent Mizzou graduate in the afternoon drive slot. Matt Whitener will produce the show and occasionally contribute on the air. The lineup shuffling leaves Howard Balzer and Joe Rodderick in position to have their roles at the radio station changed.

In Boston, WEEI has added a new weekend hockey show. “Saturday Skate” features Ken Laird (producer of Kirk & Callahan), Ty Anderson of WEEI.com, former NHLer Ryan Whitney, and Barstool Sports Bruins writer Rear Admiral. The show debuted this past Saturday and airs from 3p-5p ET.

95.7 The Game in San Francisco has plucked Bonta Hill away from KNBR 680. Hill spent three years at the Cumulus sports talker prior to agreeing to move to Entercom’s FM sports station. He’s expected to contribute to the Greg Papa show.

One immediate challenge 95.7 The Game has is getting Greg Papa back on the air. He’s been off of his show for most of the past month. Sources had varying details of why Papa hasn’t been hosting his show. The radio station says Papa is taking time off to recharge his batteries.

Details should be available soon about a new sports station launching in Columbus. The brand is expected to be affiliated with FOX Sports Radio, heard on the FM dial, and operated by iHeart. Former ESPN Cleveland WKNR on-air host Bruce Hooley is rumored to be one of the new station’s weekday personalities. It’s also possible that the local programming which originates out of Columbus could be made available on other in-state sports stations presently run by iHeart. Stay tuned for further details.

710 ESPN in Seattle and the Kent school district are conducting a town hall event on the seriousness of concussions in youth sports. The event takes place tonight at 7pm PT in Covington, WA. Afternoon host and former Seahawks LB Dave Wyman will be joined by University of Washington professor Dr. Stan Herring, and Kent School District Athletic Director Dave Lutes on the panel. Danny O’Neil, who hosts the afternoon show with Wyman and Jim Moore, will serve as moderator.

Former 101.3 ESPN afternoon host and play by play voice of Vermont men’s basketball AJ Kanell has resurfaced as the new play by play voice of Siena men’s basketball. Kanell made his on-air debut this past weekend.

With Kanell now at Siena, Sam Hyman has taken over as the play by play announcer of Vermont men’s basketball. The Catamounts continue to air their games on 101.3 ESPN in Burlington.

Double duty is what Jay Alter has earned. The Syracuse graduate has been named the TV/Radio play by play voice for Columbia women’s basketball as well as a play by play voice for Big East digital.

104.5 The Team in Albany has started utilizing Chris Onorato in a fill in hosting role when Rodger Wyland has days off.

St. Louis Cardinals play by play broadcaster Dan McLaughlin has agreed to provide play-by-play of 10 St. Louis University Billikens men’s basketball games this season. The games will be carried on FOX Sports Midwest or Fox Sports Plus and streamed on foxsportsgo.com.

The Ames Tribune has hired Joseph Hoyt to serve as their beat reporter for Iowa State sports. Hoyt announced the news earlier this month.

Sports Radio News

Jonathan Zaslow No Longer With WQAM

An attempt to reach out to Zaslow for comment went unanswered.

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WQAM midday host Jonathan Zaslow is no longer with WQAM in Miami.

The radio station has removed his show from the website and references to him and his normal 10a-2p ET midday timeslot program have been scrubbed from the station website.

Zaslow tweeted at 5:19p ET confirming the news.

Whether or not this has any effect on his involvement with the Miami Heat broadcasts is unknown as of now.

Zaslow had been with 790 the Ticket since 2004. He was transitioned from Audacy-owned 790 to sister station AM 560 Sports WQAM last October. During his tenure he has worked with a number of established local voices including Joy Taylor, Amber Wilson, Brett Romberg, and Brendan Tobin amongst others.

WQAM has gone thru a number of changes, including a rebranding effort to call the station “560 The Joe”. That ended last year with the station returning to the AM 560 Sports WQAM brand listeners were more familiar with. What they have planned next in Zaslow’s timeslot is unclear but local listeners will likely get some answers next week.

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Sports Radio News

Vanessa Richardson Named Houston Rockets Sideline Reporter, Paul Gallant to Host Solo on ESPN 97.5

Vanessa Richardson will be on the sidelines for the Houston Rockets and Paul Gallant will host solo show on ESPN 97.5.

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Vanessa and Gallant

Changes are taking place in Houston sports media. First, the Houston Rockets will have a new television sideline reporter this season, and she’s a familiar name to Houston sports fans.

Vanessa Richardson, the now former co-host of ESPN 97.5’s Vanessa and Gallant, revealed that she will be on the sidelines for the NBA franchise covering the team for AT&T SportsNet Southwest.

She tweeted the news saying, “Elated to be the new Houston Rockets sideline reporter! I can’t wait to travel the country & share the stories of this dynamic team during 80+ games on AT&T SportsNet Southwest. I’ll continue to fill-in as a host/reporter for Astros broadcasts as well.”

Richardson’s co-host, Paul Gallant, tweeted that with Richardson leaving the show for the Rockets sideline gig, Vanessa and Gallant will become the Paul Gallant Show. The solo show led by Gallant begins Monday September 26th.

“We’re excited to have Paul host his own show”, said Todd Farquharson, General Manager of ESPN 97.5 & 92.5.  “He’s super creative, energetic, and likeable.  He’ll get the audience involved and have fun.”

Paul commented, “You know what I’ve always loved about sports talk radio?  That it’s interactive.  Whether through a phone call, text message, tweet or on Twitch, it’s the best place for sports fans to come together and celebrate…or vent.  And that’s what The Paul Gallant Show is going to be…Houston’s platform to talk about its teams. THE most interactive sports talk show in Houston.”

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Sports Radio News

Ken Carman: Al Michaels ‘Feels Untethered’ On Amazon Prime Video

“The thing that stuck out was Kirk Herbstreit ripping the elf,” said Carman. “Don’t be ripping Brownie the Elf, man.”

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The Cleveland Browns defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers during Thursday Night Football on Amazon Prime Video. 92.3 The Fan morning host Ken Carman applauded Al Michaels for his performance during the presentation.

“Al Michaels feels untethered for the first time. He’s not network television anymore and he can say whatever he wants. We interviewed him on the pregame show and I was nervous,” Carman said.

“He’s a legend,” co-host Anthony Lima added.

During the final play of the game, the Steelers fumbled a lateral into the endzone which the Browns recovered to make the final score 29-17. Michaels said “that may be meaningful to some of you. And you know who I mean”, alluding to people who had placed wagers on the game.

Carman, who hosts two-hours of pre-game coverage on the Browns Radio Network, continued to discuss how nervous he was interviewing Michaels. He also discussed how impressive Amazon’s behind-the-scenes production was, pointing out the only football broadcast with more cameras is the Super Bowl. More than 400 people work behind the scenes for Amazon Prime Video.

“The thing that stuck out was Kirk Herbstreit ripping the elf,” said Carman. “Don’t be ripping Brownie the Elf, man.”

Carman later said people angry that Michaels misspoke by saying the Pro Football Hall of Fame is “down I-71” instead of I-77 were unreasonable, and joked “Al Michaels hasn’t been on a highway in 20 years”.

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