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USC, ESPN LA Extend Radio Deal

Jason Barrett

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USC and ESPNLA have signed a four-year contract extension, ensuring that Trojan football will continue to be heard live on Southern California’s leading sports radio outlet ESPNLA 710AM through the 2018-19 season.

Since 2006, ESPNLA 710AM has been the flagship station of the USC Football Radio Network, which reaches from Fresno to San Diego.

The extension also calls for approximately one-half of USC’s men’s basketball broadcasts through 2018-19 to air on ESPNLA 710AM. For those games not airing on ESPNLA 710AM, USC and ESPNLA will place the broadcasts on another local outlet.

USC football games will continue to be offered to ESPN Radio affiliates throughout the country.

“We are pleased to continue our relationship with ESPNLA and give fans more USC programming than ever before,” said Dan Shell, Vice President and General Manager of USC Sports Properties. “Additionally, to be showcased on ESPN’s national platform is great for the USC brand and Trojan fans around the country.”

Scott McCarthy, Vice President and General Manager, ESPNLA, said, “USC is one of the premier brands in college sports with a long history of academic and athletic excellence. We are proud to strengthen our long-term association with this great institution and enhance one of the tent poles of ESPNLA’s outstanding lineup of talk and play-by-play.”

A division of FOX Sports, USC Sports Properties is a full service sales and marketing organization representing the University of Southern California. Its mission is to create long-term strategic partnerships through customized, integrated marketing programs that deliver great value while addressing the needs and objectives of its corporate partners, USC, and its stakeholders.

ESPNLA serves fans with total coverage of sports in Southern California and beyond. ESPNLA 710 AM provides sports talk, local and national play-by-play, and breaking news coverage. Mason & Ireland, hosted by Steve Mason & John Ireland airs 12-3 p.m. PT, followed by Max & Marcellus, hosted by Max Kellerman and Marcellus Wiley from 3-7 p.m. PT, also hosts of SportsNation on ESPN 2. ESPNLA 710 is the exclusive home of the Los Angeles Lakers, University of Southern California Football and Basketball, College Football Playoff, Major League Baseball, the National Basketball Association, and is in partnership with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Live streaming and podcasts for select content are available on ESPNLA.com, the #1 sports website in Southern California.

Credit to the USC Trojans where this story was originally published.

Sports Radio News

Tobin and Leroy Debut on WQAM Middays

“This is a big change for us,” Tobin said. “I’ve been doing morning drive, producing or hosting now, for the last decade. Now it’s to middays we go.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Tobin and Leroy

After a brief hiatus and the closure of 790 The Ticket, Brendan Tobin and Leroy Hoard officially returned to the Miami airwaves on Monday on 560 WQAM.

Tobin and Leroy debuted in its new midday timeslot of 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on the station.

“This is a big change for us,” Tobin said. “I’ve been doing morning drive, producing or hosting now, for the last decade. Now it’s to middays we go.”

Tobin added that the timing between when they made their exit from The Ticket and returned on WQAM was a bit off.

“It was a very weird week for us to take off last week. Because they were like, ‘Hey, you’re change times, you’re gonna change stations, and also it’s gonna be the busiest sports week of the year,'” he said. “So now we’re back, and nothing will happen this week.”

“There has been less action on days we thought we had to be here than what happened last week,” Hoard added.

Hoard actually arrived to the show late, citing traffic issues getting to the station. That was something even Tobin noted is an adjustment they have to make from when they were doing morning drive.

“We’ve all discovered here today is traffic is not the same at 8 a.m. as it is at 4 a.m.,” he said. “Very different.”

Tobin made sure WQAM listeners knew that even though they switched stations, the show isn’t changing. They continued with all the usual segments that fans know and love on Monday.

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Sports Radio News

Mike Rhyner Introduces Dallas to 97.1 The Freak

“So, where were we?” began Rhyner.

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Ben Torres / Special Contributor Dallas Morning News

There’s a new radio station in Dallas which features a number of personalities familiar to local sports radio listeners. 97.1 The Freak made its much anticipated debut and the first voice to be heard belonged to the ”Old Grey Wolf” Mike Rhyner.

97.1 The Eagle stopped regular programming late Monday morning and began stunting, a technique radio stations use to separate listeners from old programming and prepare them for new content. The station began by playing songs with the word “freak” in them before transitioning into a continuous loop of “The Waiting is the Hardest Part” by Tom Petty until 3p CT. Then, a voiceover detailing the Eagle’s history switched into the voice that Dallas-Forth Worth residents have gotten to know so well, Mike Rhyner.

“So, where were we?” began Rhyner.

Rhyner went on to relive his final moments at The Ticket in Dallas. He said he was getting his “head around being a Paw Paw” before getting a call from Ben Rogers of the Ben and Skin Show and thus an idea for The Freak began to take shape.

After that, the show’s intro music played and Rhyner welcomed in Mike Sirois and before you knew it, the guys were wondering about a quarterback controversy in Dallas.

97.1 The Freak is off and running with a lineup that includes “The Speakeasy,” with Jeff Cavanaugh, Kevin “KT’ Turner, Julie Dobbs, and Matt Cather in mornings (7-11am), “Ben & Skin Show” in middays (11am-3pm) and “The Downbeat” in afternoons (3p-7p) featuring Mike Rhyner alongside Mike Sirois and Michael “Grubes” Gruber.

The station is positioning itself as a lifestyle brand but given its talent connection to local sports radio and the strong interest in Dallas sports, it’s likely the talent will weave sports talk into their on-air discussions. Sports Radio 1310/96.7 The Ticket and 105.3 The Fan have enjoyed good ratings with the male 25-54 demographic and The Freak is expected to challenge them and every other brand that produces spoken word content.

“We’re beyond excited to introduce 97-1 the Freak – the level of talent is insurmountable, and we’re thrilled for the opportunity to further connect with Dallas Fort Worth,” Patrick Davis, Regional Senior Vice President of Programming Dallas, shared in an announcement.

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Sports Radio News

Howie Rose Plans to Travel for Mets Postseason Games

“Oh, I’m all-in if they play in Timbuktu,” Rose said.

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Howie Rose has cut back on his travel schedule as the radio voice of the New York Mets in 2022, but he says that no place is off limits during the playoffs.

“Oh, I’m all-in if they play in Timbuktu,” Rose told Newsday. “A lot of this was designed to make sure that I had enough reserve to be able to handle anything that comes up in terms of road trips.”

Rose, 68, readies for what is likely to be a Wild Card series start to the playoffs and because of their Wild Card status, a win there could mean a trip to Los Angeles for the National League Divisional Series.

“It’s not exactly like managing Edwin Diaz’s innings, but I think that doing the number of games that I have and more to the point, being able to take the breaks that I have, has enabled me to approach the postseason with a clear mind and the full-speed-ahead attitude that you need to have.”

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