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James Laurinaitis Leaves 97.1 The Fan For Notre Dame Staff

“A source told Adam Rittenberg that Laurinaitis will likely serve as an analyst.”

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James Laurinaitis is done with radio, at least for now. He will exit 97.1 The Fan in Columbus at the end of the week to enter the college football coaching ranks.

Laurinaitis is set to join Marcus Freeman’s staff at Notre Dame. The two were teammates at Ohio State from 2005 until 2009. A source told Adam Rittenberg that Laurinaitis will likely serve as an analyst.

“With your best friend getting the head-coaching job, it’s a pretty unique situation and a pretty awesome opportunity to get up there and get started in the profession,” James Laurinaitis said.

While at Ohio State, both the broadcaster and the Notre Dame coach were linebackers. When their college days were over, Laurinaitis went onto the NFL and then eventually into sports talk radio, while Marcus Freeman went into coaching, serving as an assistant at Ohio State, Kent State, Purdue, and Cincinnati before joining Brian Kelly’s staff at Notre Dame and eventually being tapped to replace Kelly as the head coach when his boss left South Bend for Baton Rouge.

James Laurinaitis began his broadcasting career in 2017. He joined the Big Ten Network that year as an analyst. The next year, he joined the staff at 97.1 The Fan.

He and Beau Bishop have enjoyed tremendous ratings success together. That includes the summer book of 2021, where the pair posted a 12.5 rating in the 9-noon slot with the target demo.

Listeners and colleagues lined up on social media with well-wishes. Todd Markiewicz joked that everyone at 97.1 The Fan is rooting for James Laurinaitis to find success, just not right away.

Notre Dame and Ohio State meet in Columbus to open the 2022 college football season on September 3.

Sports Radio News

Peter Rosenberg: Gio’s Rant ‘Gimmick Infringement’ of Don La Greca

The comment from Rosenberg comes after Giannotti was critical of he and La Greca last week. Giannotti claimed the pair were “bootlicking” Michael Kay.

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The war of words between WFAN’s Boomer & Gio and 98.7 ESPN New York’s The Michael Kay Show continued Monday, with a quip from Peter Rosenberg about a rant from Gregg Giannotti.

Giannotti, a Vikings fan, was discussing his viewing situation during Monday morning’s show as the franchise played the New York Giants. His wife, two daughters, mother, mother-in-law, and best friend joined him to watch the Super Wild Card game, and the WFAN host detailed that the situation grew more tense with each passing moment due to comments made by those in attendance.

Giannotti eventually admitted to yelling at his friend, and jokingly shouted “Not the time, Louise!” after his mother-in-law commented about how good the Giants had gotten during a Saquon Barkley touchdown run.

The rant didn’t go unnoticed by Rosenberg, however, and he replied to Giannotti’s video clip of the segment by saying “Fake Don Lagrecca (sic) much? This is called gimmick infringement”.

The comment from Rosenberg comes after Giannotti was critical of he and La Greca last week. Giannotti claimed the pair were “bootlicking” Michael Kay after walking back comments he made about getting a producer at the station fired by calling them “performance art”.

While criticising Kay, Giannotti could not identify Rosenberg, only calling him “whatever his face”.

“He’s gonna retire. It doesn’t matter whether you kiss his ass or not, it’s not gonna be the difference in you getting that job when he leaves,” Giannotti said of La Greca and Rosenberg. “Just stop it. Just stop kissing his ass.”

Rosenberg responded to the disapproval from Giannotti last week by tweeting “My favorite part of the trash talk from the guy on the fan is ‘pick on someone your own size Michael Kay… pick on me’…LOL who are you?!!!!”

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Sports Radio News

Jim Rome: Sad Paul Allen Is The Saddest Thing Ever

“Never mind letting yourselves down, never mind letting your employer down, never mind letting your fans down, you let the great P.A. down.”

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Jim Rome

One of Super Wild Card Weekend’s biggest upsets came in the Giants/Vikings game on Sunday afternoon, and Vikings radio voice Paul Allen obviously wasn’t thrilled about the final offensive play.

Jim Rome picked up on that listening to Allen’s call of Kirk Cousins finding T.J. Hockenson short of the line to gain, ending Minnesota’s season.

Rome said he hurt for Allen, who like many followers of the Vikings were shocked to see the second seed in the NFC playoffs bounced the first weekend.

“On the one hand sad P.A. is the saddest thing ever. I hate that so much,” Rome said Monday. “But he turns into pissed P.A. too. I mean that is a brutal way to lose. And what’s sadder than sad P.A.?”

Allen went viral halfway through the 2022-23 season, with his calls of a wild game against the Buffalo Bills on November 13. Allen went through a complete roller coaster of emotions as Buffalo fought to win 33-30 in overtime.

Rome added that he thought disappointing Allen was the worst of all for the NFC North champs.

“Never mind letting yourselves down, never mind letting your employer down, never mind letting your fans down, you let the great P.A. down,” he said.

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Sports Radio News

Angelo Cataldi: Could Al Michaels Just Quit Already?

“How do you go from ‘Do you believe in miracles?’ to “There’s a flag on the field’?”

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Angelo Cataldi has never been one to shy away from his feelings about any topic, and has been especially outspoken on his criticism of different broadcasters. Al Michaels was the target of Cataldi’s ire Monday morning for his lackluster performance during the Super Wild Card matchup on NBC Saturday.

“This is not easy for me. The man is an icon. I gotta tell ya, Al Michaels sucked the life out of the game he did,” Cataldi said. “This is the first thing I don’t understand: Al Michaels — even though now he’s on Amazon — still did an NBC game. They made sure he was getting one playoff game, but they didn’t bring the partner from Amazon, Kirk Herbstreit. They brought in someone who doesn’t do color analysis in Tony Dungy. I love Tony Dungy, but not in that role. Tony Dungy is bland and boring in that role. He was bland and boring and it was awful!

“It’s 27-0 and Al Michaels is in a bad mood. And Al Michaels is talking about the overtime rules, and he says ‘We won’t have to worry about that in this game’. He’s dissing the game! A few weeks ago, he went crazy on a bad game and just ripped it apart. He said ‘I’m not here to sell a used car’. He said this on the air! Then you get to the end of the game, it’s a thriller. A great comeback by Doug Pederson! The fourth down chances he takes, the brilliant decisions he makes. And they’re lining up for the field goal, and I want you to hear how he sucked the life out of the moment,” Cataldi said before playing the clip of Michaels’ game-winning call.

“The guy’s an icon!,” Cataldi shouted. “A Hall of Fame broadcaster, and he never even called the play! He never told you who won the game! It was unbelievably brutal! How do you go from ‘Do you believe in miracles?’ to ‘There’s a flag on the field’?”

Cataldi concluded by saying the 78-year-old Michaels needs to retire if that’s the best effort he can muster. The 94WIP host then compared the call from Michaels to that of Jaguars radio announcer Frank Frangie.

Michaels was not the only NFL announcer to feel Cataldi’s wrath Monday morning. He also criticized Tony Romo, as well as Daryl “Moose” Johnston, and Cris Collinsworth.

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