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Under The Radar – January 3, 2017

Jason Barrett

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A couple of tidbits from the sports media world. If you have a future tip or news story to pass along, send it via email to JBarrett@hvy.tcp.mybluehost.me.

Good news for sports radio listeners in Detroit. 97.1 The Ticket afternoon host Terry Foster is returning to the airwaves alongside his longtime partner Mike Valenti. Foster had been battling some health issues and had been off the station. Jeff Riger had filled in for Foster with Valenti. Foster is scheduled to return Tuesday afternoon.

670 The Score is now officially 25 years old. The Chicago sports station celebrated its birthday on Monday January 2nd. As The Score prepares for its next 25 years, it’ll begin the journey by saying goodbye to longtime drive time host Terry Boers. Terry will host his final show on the radio station this Thursday.

Speaking of celebrations, Arizona Sports 98.7 also recently enjoyed 10 years on the air. The station originally launched the sports format in January 2007 on KTAR 620AM before moving to the FM dial in January 2014.

In the Mile High City, a couple of moves have been made at Mile High Sports 104.7FM and 1340AM. The station has announced the addition of Ryan Edwards, who will team up with Danny Williams weekdays from 9a-11a MT. Sean Walsh has also been added to the lineup and will host a new show weekdays from 2p-4p MT.

Fletcher Johnson has announced he’s departing 750 The Game in Portland. Johnson had been part of the afternoon show alongside Noah “Chop” Homsley. Johnson says that after seven years with the station and a rise from intern to drive time host he’s ready for a change.

With Johnson exiting afternoons at 750 The Game, the station has announced they’ll pair Homsley with former 710 ESPN Seattle midday host Justin Myers who has been working for The Game in a part-time role. Myers and Homsley will rebrand their afternoon show as “The Irregular Guys“.

A tip of the cap to Mike Florio who stayed on the air on NBC Sports Radio for six hours on Black Monday to navigate all of the NFL coaching news. With a number of local stations airing holiday programming that day, it was a smart move by Westwood One to offer additional hours of Florio’s show, and an even wiser move by Florio to invest the extra time on-air.

If you missed it, Dana White revealed that lead UFC announcer Mike Goldberg has worked his final broadcast with the company. Goldberg called the action on the UFC 207 pay per view alongside his longtime partner Joe Rogan. White is said to have heavy interest in hiring Jim Rome to call future fights. No deal between the two parties has been reached yet.

Dio Garcia has left 940 WINZ where he served as the producer of the Andy Slater show. Garcia had worked on the show for the past five years, including stints at two different stations.

Congratulations to Syracuse alum Michael Silver who has landed a producer job with Sports Radio 930 in Jacksonville.

George Balekji has agreed to become the new sports anchor for Action 12 News KODE in Joplin, MO and Pittsburg, KS.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will have a new beat reporter covering them in 2017. Trevor Sikkema has signed on with Pewter Report to cover the team throughout the year.

Former Patriot Ledger high school sports reporter Matt Cook has accepted a new opportunity with the Metrowest Daily News where he’ll contribute as a multimedia sports journalist. The publication is based out of Framingham, MA.

Sports Radio News

WEEI Producer Begins Campaign To Get Greg Hill into Radio Hall of Fame

“He has been around for a long time in the Boston radio scene and raised a lot of money for charity and done a lot of good things and a lot of good radio.”

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Greg Hill already has a Marconi, but that honor isn’t enough according to one of his producers.

Jackson, who hosts The Greg Hill Show’s after-show podcast, revealed on Monday that he is ready to make the case to the Radio Hall of Fame for the WEEI morning man to be included in next year’s induction ceremony.

He said that Hill treats the Marconi Award he won for Major Market Personality of the Year like it belongs to everyone. Hill credits not just the current cast he works with on WEEI, but partners from his days at active rocker WAAF as well, with helping him take home that award. Jackson wants to see Hill get an honor that is just for him.

“The Radio Hall of Fame would be very much Greg only, and I think he needs that solo recognition. Not for his ego, but for posterity and for his legend because he is legendary,” Jackson said. “He has been around for a long time in the Boston radio scene and raised a lot of money for charity and done a lot of good things and a lot of good radio.”

This year, the Radio Hall of Fame included a trio of WFAN legends in its induction class with found Jeff Smulyan, Christopher “Mad Dog” Russo and Suzyn Waldman all being honored.

Jackson says he is taking it upon himself to make the case for Greg Hill getting in, but he encouraged listeners to find out what they can do and then do it. While he made it clear that Hill deserves the honor, Jackson acknowledged that the recognition would make him feel pretty good too.

“That would be cool because then I would be working for a Radio Hall-of-Famer and in the circle of trust of a Radio Hall-of-Famer perhaps.”

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Jason Barrett Podcast

Jason Barrett Podcast: Jeff Smulyan, Never Ride a Roller Coaster Upside Down

Jason Barrett

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There would be no sports radio if not for Jeff Smulyan. He takes JB through the triumphs and disappointments of his career and explains why he is sharing so many stories in a new book, Never Ride a Roller Coaster Upside Down. To pick up your copy, click here.

iTunes: https://buff.ly/3nTJC5K 

Spotify: https://buff.ly/3z9hErM

iHeart: https://buff.ly/3oyi0U0

Google: https://buff.ly/3vh7Tqu

Amazon: https://buff.ly/3w9hqAh

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Sports Radio News

Zolak & Bertrand: Kirk Herbstreit’s Comments A Wake Up Call For Patriots Fans

“Next time you feel like they shouldn’t be booing them, there’s someone from a national perspective – who has been calling games now in the NFL for at least all of this year – but is very familiar with the league and all the different cities and he’s been in college environments for a decade plus, and said their fans aren’t angry enough.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Zolak and Bertrand

Things appeared to come to a head for the New England Patriots and their fans last week as the team fell to the Buffalo Bills 24-10.

Many fans of the Patriots with the loss seem to have accepted the fact that the glory days of the franchise are officially over. Thursday Night Football analyst Kirk Herbstreit even noted that it was off-putting that fans near his broadcast vantage point were fine with the Pats coming out on the losing end.

“I just felt the sense of acceptance of where they are,” Herbstreit said during a Friday appearance on The Pat McAfee Show. “It really shocked me. I’m just so used to the Patriots’ 20 years of excellence, and not just the NFL in all of professional sports. And to see their fan base just like, we suck, whatever, game’s over, like early they were like that.”

On Zolak & Bertrand Monday, co-host Scott Zolak disagreed with Herbstreit’s take.

“I don’t know what you want from a fan base to do after that when the game’s over, and the place starts to dump out,” he said. “The game was well in hand.”

Zolak’s cohort Marc Bertrand felt differently, praising Herbstreit for offering that sort of perspective.

“Next time you feel like they shouldn’t be booing them, there’s someone from a national perspective – who has been calling games now in the NFL for at least all of this year – but is very familiar with the league and all the different cities and he’s been in college environments for a decade plus, and said their fans aren’t angry enough,” Bertrand said. “They let ’em off the hook.”

Bertrand felt like Patriots fans had every right to be pissed off with the product the team put on the field last week and have done so far this season. Especially when people are paying top dollar for admission to games.

“That product doesn’t match those prices last Thursday night,” he said, continuing to agree with what Herbstreit said. “You don’t hear that a lot around here. So I thought it was a nice change up.”

Zolak and Bertrand both seemed to determine that perhaps it was a case of fans being too nice and being willing to accept failure from head coach Bill Belichick and his staff.

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