Kentucky Sports Radio host Matt Jones has been on a roll.
Following interviews with dueling Senate candidates Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes last year, KSR became a must-stop for candidates looking to reach a different audience.
Most recently, Presidential candidate Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., called in to talk football and Donald Trump.
For the most part, KSR is a straightforward talk radio show. It’s just Jones, 37, and his co-host Ryan Lemond chatting about UK sports in obsessive detail. Jones usually records in Louisville. Lemond in Lexington. The show, which is also produced by Shannon “the dude” Grisby, takes calls from listeners. The hosts joke around. No bells. No whistles.
Interviews with big names in state and national politics are becoming a common feature of the two-hour show. And even Jones himself is emerging as a political figure. At the moment, Jones is considering a run for Congress that would pit him against Republican incumbent U.S. Rep. Andy Barr. A run would require him to move from Louisville to the district, which includes Lexington.
This year, Jones emceed the speeches at the state’s biggest political event, the Fancy Farm Picnic. He also hosted a Republican gubernatorial primary debate and this week KSR aired a debate of the three gubernatorial hopefuls in the November general election.
There are a couple of reasons for all of this. One is Jones himself. He said his role as a sports host gives him the ability to approach politics from a different perspective.
“I’m able to ask things that others can’t,” he said. “I am able to sort of pull the curtain back in a way that other people won’t or feel like they can’t.”
Jones also doesn’t flinch in telling his audience where he’s coming from. He said it hasn’t hurt his ability to weigh in on issues.
“I’ve gone on air and said I lean liberal in a state that leans conservative,” Jones explained. “That I am a Democrat. And yet the Republican party asked me to host a debate.”
With this approach, Jones and the show have garnered a big following. On the air for just five years, KSR is now carried on 37 different affiliates across the Bluegrass State.
Lemond, Jones’ co-host for the past four years, said the show’s recent foray into politics has actually helped grow its audience, which is something he didn’t expect.
“It is kind of odd that as a sports show we dabble into the political realm, but it’s what affects all of us,” he said. “I think Matt is trying to bond that bridge so to speak.
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Kirk Herbstriet Wants To Be Held To Same Standard For NFL As College Football
“Herbstreit was on The Pat McAfee Show on Friday and he said he is already at Pro Football Focus in Cincinnati doing his research.”
The NFL schedule was released last week, and Thursday Night Football has a lot of interesting matchups for its first year on Amazon Prime. It is also a new broadcast booth with Al Michaels and Kirk Herbstreit on the call.
With Herbstreit now adding Thursday Night Football to College Gameday, he has already started preparing for the upcoming season. Herbstreit was on The Pat McAfee Show on Friday and he said he is already at Pro Football Focus in Cincinnati doing his research.
“I’m just trying to lay a foundation,” said Herbstreit.
Herbstreit told McAfee that whenever anyone asks him to talk about a college team, he can quickly tell them what the DNA of that team is. Now he wants to bring that level of preparation to his NFL broadcasts. He will look at a different matchup every week this summer to get a more detailed idea of what each team is about:
As for his connection with Al Michaels, Herbstreit mentioned he has gone out to dinner with him a couple of times and he wants to make going out to eat with his broadcast partner a frequent deal.
“Hung out with him 2-3 times. Had a chance just to get to know him. When you go into a new deal, I love like Wednesday night dinner, I want to make a staple and just hang out and get to know him and hopefully he will get to know me. When you do that, it allows you to have natural chemistry.”
Andrew Mason To Succeed John Clayton At 104.3 The Fan
“Mason comes to The Fan from DNVR, a digital outlet where he provided written and audio content for the last three seasons.”
John Clayton passed away earlier this year. That left 104.3 The Fan without a lead Broncos writer for the 2022 season. On Monday, the station announced that it had hired a successor in Andrew Mason.
Mason comes to The Fan from DNVR, a digital outlet where he provided written and audio content for the last three seasons.
“Mase’s work speaks for itself as one of the market’s most respected analysts when it comes to writing about and discussing the Broncos,” Raj Sharan, The Fan’s program director, said in a press release. “Replacing someone of the legendary stature of John Clayton was not something we took lightly, and we believe Mase is the perfect person to pick up that mantle and bring tremendous credibility and content to our rapidly growing digital platforms.”
Andrew Mason has a lot of credibility with Broncos fans. He has covered the team for 19 years. He has also written a book called Tales from the Denver Broncos Sideline.
The Fan won’t be his first foray into Denver radio either. Mason has previously been a host on Mile High Sports Radio and the defunct KDSP- AM.
“I’m thrilled to join The Fan team and add what I can to the efforts of building Denver’s premier online destination for Denver fans,” said Mason. “Being tasked with replacing a legend like John Clayton is a responsibility I take very seriously, and I’m honored The Fan has entrusted me with this opportunity.”
Gregg Giannotti: ‘Drew Brees Isn’t Used To Not Succeeding’
“He’s succeeded at everything he’s ever done and then he gets into the booth and they kick him out after one year. It’s a tough spot.”
What does the future hold for Drew Brees? Andrew Marchand reports that he is set to leave NBC. Brees himself says nothing is decided yet.
On Monday morning, Boomer & Gio discussed why the former quarterback is in this position just one year after making his broadcasting debut. Gregg Giannotti noted that if Brees was brought to NBC with the idea that he would eventually be the top game analyst, the criticism he faced last year and the network’s decision to stick with Cris Collinsworth in the Sunday Night Football booth were likely unexpected blows to his ego.
“That’s a tough spot, man, for him,” Gio said. “The guy’s been beloved his whole career. He did go through a little bit of it when people were all over his ass for saying the wrong thing one time, but here he goes. He’s succeeded at everything he’s ever done and then he gets into the booth and they kick him out after one year. It’s a tough spot.”
Boomer Esiason added that the criticism Drew Brees received for his work in the broadcast booth did not apply to his work on Football Night in America or the Sunday Night Football halftime show.
“He was good in the studio,” Boomer Esiason said. “I saw him in the studio and I liked him.”
Brees prefers calling games to work in the studio. According to Marchand’s report, that is what is at the heart of his potential exit from NBC.
The color commentator role may come with more prestige, but it isn’t easy. Esiason has experience with both positions. He calls games on the radio for Westwood One and has been a staple of CBS’s The NFL Today since 2002.
“Some guys are not meant to be game analysts, that’s all.”