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SiriusXM To Showcase College Football’s Fiercest Rivalries

Jason Barrett

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SiriusXM will air a special eight-part radio series focused on the history behind several of the most storied rivalries in the history of college football.  Gridiron Grudges: College Football’s Fiercest Rivalries will debut on Monday, November 23, and air throughout Thanksgiving Week, leading up to this season’s versions of these rivalry games.

Each episode of the series will be devoted to capturing the history, intensity and emotions of a different rivalry.  Those featured will be:

  • Ohio State-Michigan (Series dates back to 1897)
  • Auburn-Alabama (1893)
  • Clemson-South Carolina (1896)
  • UCLA-USC (1929)
  • Florida-Florida St. (1958)
  • Georgia-Georgia Tech (1893)
  • Ole Miss-Mississippi St. (1901)
  • Oklahoma-Oklahoma St. (1904)

Listeners will get an in-depth look at the origins of each long-standing matchup and be able to re-live historic moments and memorable game highlights. They will hear the perspectives of players and coaches who have been participants in these contests on the field, as well as the fans who have watched year after year and cheered and cried over the outcome.

The series will air nationwide on SiriusXM’s 24/7 college sports channel, SiriusXM College Sports Nation (channel 84 on satellite radios and on smartphones via the SiriusXM app). Each 30 or 60-minute episode will air multiple times, and will also be available on SiriusXM On Demand.

“Few things stir fans’ emotions the way these classic rivalries do. Every fall these games represent either the highlight or the heartbreak of the season for so many,” said Scott Greenstein, SiriusXM’s President and Chief Content Officer. “On SiriusXM College Sports Nation we are able to delve deeper into the history and excitement of these matchups in a way nobody else on radio can. As the anticipation for this year’s games builds, this series will enable fans to re-live fond memories of these rivalries, and maybe learn something new, as we tell the stories behind them.”

Gridiron Grudges: College Football’s Fiercest Rivalries – Series Schedule

Ohio State-Michigan, narrated by Mark Packer
Air dates: Nov. 23 (4:00 pm & 8:00 pm ET), Nov. 25 (10:00 pm ET), Nov. 26 (11:00 am & 3:00 pm ET)
Interviews include: Former Ohio State RBs Eddie George and Robert Smith, former OSU LB Chris Spielman, former Michigan lineman Dan Dierdorf, former Michigan QB Chad Henne, former Michigan head coach Brady Hoke, former Michigan DB Marcus Ray, and others

Auburn-Alabama, narrated by Taylor Zarzour
Air dates: Nov. 23 (7:00 pm ET), Nov. 24 (4:00 pm ET), Nov. 26 (2:00 pm ET)
Interviews include: Former Alabama QB Joe Namath, Alabama coach Nick Saban, Auburn coach Gus Malzahn, former Alabama QB Greg McElroy, former Auburn WR Sammie Coates, former Alabama coach Gene Stallings, former Auburn coach Pat Dye, and others

Clemson-South Carolina, narrated by Mark Packer
Air dates: Nov. 24 (9:30 pm ET), Nov. 25 (4:30 pm & 8:30 pm ET), Nov. 26 (12:30 pm ET)
Interviews include: Former South Carolina coach Lou Holtz, former Clemson coach Tommy Bowden, former South Carolina RB George Rogers, country music star Tim McGraw, and others

UCLA-USC, narrated by Chris Childers
Air dates: Nov. 25 (7:30 pm ET), Nov. 26 (10:30 am & 4:30 pm ET)
Interviews include: Former UCLA coach and player Rick Neuheisel, former USC QB Matt Leinart, former UCLA QB Matt Stevens, and others

Florida-Florida State, narrated by Jack Arute
Air dates: Nov. 24 (9:00 pm ET), Nov. 25 (4:00 pm & 8:00 pm ET), Nov. 26 (12:00 pm ET)
Interviews include: Former Florida St. head coach Bobby Bowden, former FSU DBs Deion Sanders and Samari Rolle, former Florida QB Chris Leak, country music star Jake Owen, and others

Ole Miss-Mississippi State, narrated by Taylor Zarzour
Air dates: Nov. 24 (10:30 pm ET), Nov. 25 (9:30 pm ET), Nov. 26 (1:30 pm & 5:30 pm ET)
Interviews include: Former Ole Miss QB Archie Manning, former Mississippi St. head coach Jackie Sherrill, Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze, Mississippi St. head coach Dan Mullen, and others

Georgia-Georgia Tech, narrated by Chris Childers
Air dates: Nov. 24 (10:00 pm ET), Nov. 25 (9:00 pm ET), Nov. 26 (1:00 pm & 5:00 pm ET)
Interviews include: former Georgia QB Buck Belue, former Georgia Tech WR Calvin Johnson, Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson, former Georgia coach Jim Donnan, and others

Oklahoma-Oklahoma State, narrated by Jack Arute
Air dates: Nov. 25 (7:00 pm ET), Nov. 26 (10:00 am & 4:00 pm ET)
Interviews include: Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops, Oklahoma St. head coach Mike Gundy, WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross, and others

Sports Radio News

16.9% of All Sports Radio Listeners Are Streaming

The survey found that in May 2022, 16.9% of sports talk radio’s audience tunes in via the station’s online stream. That news comes as Nielsen reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.

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Streaming Radio

According to Nielsen, All Sports radio stations are the third-most streamed spoken word format, just behind Talk/Personality and News/Talk/Info. The trend is continuing to show that streaming is on the uptick.

The survey found that in May 2022, 16.9% of sports talk radio’s audience tunes in via the station’s online stream. That news comes as Nielson reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.

Nielsen notes that in the 45 PPM markets they are grabbing data from and the 4,800+ stations that stream in those markets, just 30% of them are encoded. That encoding allows for Nielsen to accurately measure the streams. They used the listener data from 1,500 stations across the U.S., in its latest report, AM/FM Radio Streaming Growth in PPM Markets

The survey also showed that streaming levels differ widely by radio format. Spoken word formats display strong streaming listenership (Talk/Personality: 31.2%, News/Talk/Info: 19.1%, All Sports: 16.9%). In fact, Nielsen found that 1/3 of all AM/FM streaming in PPM markets is to spoken word formats.

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Sports Radio News

New Study Finds Listeners to MLB on Radio Are Willing to Spend

More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team… 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.

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MLB Radio

When it comes to advertiser’s attempting to reach an affluent and engaged audience, sports talk radio might have a whale on their hands. Major League Baseball play-by-play features an audience that has money and has no problems spending it.

In a recent MRI-Simmons study, data shows that consumers who listen to MLB broadcasts on the radio are the perfect audience for sports marketers. According to the analysis, done by Katz Radio Group, nearly two thirds (62%) of those surveyed consider themselves “super fans” of baseball. That number is 58% higher than the average.

Radio Listeners to MLB

Those “super fans” are willing to spend to support their team, as well. More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team. Those fans are also far more willing to make the trip to see their team. The study found that 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.

The news continues getting better for advertisers. Continued analysis reveals that 66% of listeners are currently employed and have a median household income greater than $106,000.

Listeners to MLB games on the radio are also 34% more likely to place a sports bet and 106% more likely to be a participant in fantasy baseball.

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Sports Radio News

Jeff Dean Signs Off At ESPN Tucson for The Final Time

Dean said on Facebook: “…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”

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Jeff Dean Show

Fans will no longer be able to tune into ESPN Tucson and hear Jeff Dean hosting his show. Friday morning was his last show, according to his Facebook and Twitter pages.

The Jeff Dean Show had been airing from 7-9a MT weekday mornings. Dean took to social media to relay the news and the reason behind him stepping away from the microphone. Dean said on Facebook:

“This morning I signed off from my radio show on ESPN Tucson for the final time. I have been devoting too much of my life and my time to working multiple jobs…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”

Jeff Dean Facebook

Dean went on to emphasize that he isn’t stepping away from ESPN Tucson, he’s just taking himself off the air. He also added that “gladly, I will be continuing my position as PA announcer of University of Arizona Football and Men’s basketball.”

Dean would also go onto Twitter to add even further context for his self-removal from the ESPN Tucson airwaves. He added, “It’s not a decision I arrived at hastily, as it’s been a 6 month mental grind to make the ultimate decision that had to be made, and I’m not particularly happy about it, but I have to put my health first, we all do, and make sure we’re around long enough to enjoy life”.

Dean had been ESPN Tucson’s morning host since November 2019.

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