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98.7 ESPN New York Makes Room For National Shows

“From 6am – 6pm WFAN currently airs three shows, while ESPN New York will now have six shows all chopped up.”

Brandon Contes

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ESPN New York spent nearly two decades in WFAN’s rearview mirror, and after finally finding a recipe to beat their sports radio rival in afternoon drive, the station decided it’s time to shuffle their lineup. 

After Stephen A. Smith departed the 1 – 3pm window in January, 98.7 ESPN New York’s local offering was growing, as was the station’s continuity. According to Andrew Marchand of The New York Post, 98.7’s latest move will see the addition of star power with Mike Greenberg and Max Kellerman, but it creates a schedule far from the traditional three-show weekday lineup. From 6am – 6pm WFAN currently airs three shows, while ESPN New York will now have six shows all chopped up. 

From 6 – 9am, 98.7 will pick up ESPN Radio’s new national morning show featuring Keyshawn Johnson, Jay Williams and Zubin Mehenti, and bypass their final hour. Following the national morning show, ESPN New York will shorten Rick DiPietro, Chris Canty and Dave Rothenberg’s program and shift the trio into the 9 – 11am hours. Humpty, Canty and Rothenberg will be followed by Bart Scott and Alan Hahn from 11am – 1pm. 

Hahn previously hosted from 10am – 1pm on ESPN New York, but left the show because of his commitments to MSG as a studio analyst. He moved to evenings and returned to 98.7’s weekday lineup earlier this year, co-hosting with Scott from 1 – 3pm where they served as a local lead-in for The Michael Kay Show

TMKS will once again return to having national programming as its lead-in, with ESPN New York picking up the final hour of Mike Greenberg’s new show from 1 – 2pm, and the first hour of Max Kellerman from 2 – 3pm, creating a pieced together early afternoon. 

In terms of ratings, 98.7’s recent locally focused lineup has enjoyed success, with gains being made in the 10am – 3pm hours, and The Michael Kay Show dominating WFAN in afternoon drive. Traditionally, national programming hasn’t worked as well in competing against WFAN. Recently, there was even thought of 98.7 looking to go local in morning drive as ESPN Radio gets set to replace Golic and Wingo. Instead, ESPN New York will challenge WFAN with an arsenal of national shows. 

WFAN has shown vulnerability in recent ratings books, trailing ESPN New York in afternoon drive as they attempt to move on from the Mike Francesa era. But ESPN’s disinclination for continuity and fresh focus on national programming could buy FAN time in their transition.

Sports Radio News

Dan Dakich: Craig Carton is ‘The Way Talk Radio Should Be’

“If you’re being critical because you want to be the guy that’s always critical I don’t think you can do that either. I think you gotta be honest. And criticism comes with it.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Craig Carton has prided himself on being one of those hosts who tells it like it is, especially when talking about New York’s pro sports teams.

That willingness to call a spade a spade and levy criticism on teams like the Jets and Giants, especially when things are not going well on the field, is something Dan Dakich has always seen as a recipe for success in the industry.

Interviewing Carton on Thursday on his Outkick show Don’t @ Me, Dakich praised the WFAN afternoon host for essentially creating a blueprint for how sports talk should be done.

“In Indianapolis I’m the bad guy right, because I say look the Colts stink, this regime is 46-49-1 – why are you telling me the GM is the best in the country – why are you telling me Frank Reich can really coach?” Dakich said. “New York’s different, though, right? I mean, New York they expect you to say look if you ain’t any good then you ain’t any good. Yu don’t sugarcoat nothing, and I think that’s the way talk radio should be.”

Carton noted that what’s key in how you critique a team or a front office, executive or owner is finding a balance. He said you can’t as a host be the ultimate homer and blow smoke up everyone’s behind.

“You have to be able to be critical when it’s warranted,” Carton said. “If you’re being critical because you want to be the guy that’s always critical I don’t think you can do that either. I think you gotta be honest. And criticism comes with it.”

Carton pointed out that the fan bases in both New York and in Indianapolis are ultimately the same, because at the end of the day it’s all about making sure you have competent people calling the right shots. He added that the organizations are the same too because of how sensitive they can be to criticism, which he said if they don’t like it, “too bad.”

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Sports Radio News

Nick Ashooh Joins BetMGM Tonight

Jordan Bondurant

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The talent lineup for the BetQL show BetMGM Tonight is expanding, and Nick Ashooh is joining the team.

The news became official on Thursday when BetQL announced the addition of Ashooh on Twitter.

Ashooh has worked mainly in the D.C. market up to this point in his career, hosting for Audacy and NBC Sports Washington. He had been contributing sports betting content for the BetQL network for the latter part of the last year.

Ashooh joins co-hosts Trysta Krick and Ryan Horvat on BetMGM Tonight. The show can be heard weeknights from 7-11 p.m.

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Sports Radio News

1010XL Jay Fund Radiothon Raises Nearly $250,000 For Pediatric Cancer Research

“In the 15 year history of the radiothon, the station has raised just under $1.5 billion for the Jay Fund.”

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Jacksonville’s 1010XL used its airwaves to raise money for the Jay Fund for the fifteenth year earlier this week. The radiothon was a smashing success, raising $249,784 to fight pediatric cancer.

This year’s total is a new record for the event. In the 15 year history of the radiothon, the station has raised just under $1.6 million for the Jay Fund.

“I’m truly amazed at the generosity of the 1010 XL listeners in times when a carton of eggs cost six dollars,” said General Manager Steven Griffin, “and equally amazed how the hosts, producers, radio staff and volunteers come together with a singular focus to year-after-year produce these results in one broadcast day.”

Former Jacksonville Jaguars and New York Giants coach Tom Coughlin started the Jay Fund in memory of  Jay McGillis, who developed leukemia while playing for Coughlin at Boston College. The organization has helped over 5,000 families and given away over $16 million in grants in Northeast Florida and the New York/New Jersey Metropolitan Area.

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