Here are the latest developments happening in sports radio, television, and print that you might not have been aware of. If you want to be included in this section in the future, send your story, tip or press release to JBarrett@hvy.tcp.mybluehost.me.
- Some changes are taking place behind the scenes at ESPN Radio. Congratulations is in order for Michelle Smallmon who has been named the new producer for ESPN Radio’s “Russillo and Kanell“. Smallmon moved to the network last summer after a successful tenure with 101 ESPN in St. Louis. She had been producing “Jorge and Izzy” featuring Jorge Sedano and Israel Gutierrez.
- With Smallmon joining the midday show, Vince Kates takes over producing duties of “Jorge and Izzy“. Kates had been working with “Russillo and Kanell” and has a strong track record of producing top network talent including Colin Cowherd, Todd Wright, Jason Smith, and others.
- FOX Sports 910 in Phoenix is launching a new 1-hour morning show. The radio station has confirmed the addition of “Four Quarters” featuring host Mike Jurecki. The show will air weekdays from 6a-7a and offer a heavy dose of NFL and Arizona Cardinals conversation.
- WTIC Hartford afternoon host and CBS Sports Radio weekend man Andy Gresh is filling in Monday and Tuesday this week on WFAN in New York. Gresh will host the midday show. He’s also scheduled to fill-in on August 18th and 19th.
- With 49ers play by play radio voice Ted Robinson busy calling the Olympics for NBC, Kate Scott is earning an opportunity to step up and call 49ers pre-season action on KNBR. Scott will call the first two games alongside former Niners Keena Turner, and Dennis Brown. Regular radio analyst Tim Ryan will be involved on the team’s local television broadcast.
- Keep your eye on WDFN in Detroit. According to sources, there could be additional local programming on the radio station in the near future.
- Richard Daugherty has announced he’s leaving the afternoon show on FOX Sports Knoxville. Daugherty had been co-hosting alongside Russell Smith. No word yet on where Daugherty is headed or who will replace him on the show.
- In Cleveland, Dave DeNatale has announced he’s leaving as producer and co-host of the Bruce Hooley show on ESPN 850 WKNR. DeNatale had spent the past six years working for the radio station. No details were shared on where he’s headed or who would be replacing him on the show.
- Continuing with departure news, producer Anthony Nachreiner has left Sports Radio 1560 The Fan in Melbourne, Florida in order to become the new Sports Director for 600 KGEZ in Kalispell, Montana. Nachreiner spent the past two years producing and contributing to the “Mark Moses Show”.
- Producer Kyle Knezevich of The Dan Dakich Show, and MMA fighter and former NFL player Matt Mitrione have started a new Saturday show titled “The Beatdown”. The program airs on 1070 The Fan in Indianapolis.
- TSN 1150 in Hamilton, Ontario has reached an agreement to become the new flagship station of the Hamilton Bulldogs of the OHL.
- The New Orleans Times-Picayune have added Herbie Teope as a new Saints beat writer. Toepe had been covering the Kansas City Chiefs for the Topeka-Capital Journal.
- Tania Ganguli has vacated her position as the Houston Texans reporter for ESPN’s NFL Nation, in order to accept an opportunity covering the Los Angeles Lakers for the Los Angeles Times.
- Speaking of NFL Nation, ESPN has added two new faces, starting with Katherine Terrell taking over as the new Cincinnati Bengals reporter. The company has also brought in Alden Gonzalez to cover the Los Angeles Rams.
Jason Barrett is the owner and operator of Barrett Sports Media. Prior to launching BSM he served as a sports radio programmer, launching brands such as 95.7 The Game in San Francisco and 101 ESPN in St. Louis. He has also produced national shows for ESPN Radio including GameNight and the Dan Patrick Show. You can find him on Twitter @SportsRadioPD or reach him by email at JBarrett@sportsradiopd.com.
Evan Roberts: Boomer Esiason Was Taking Shot at Craig Carton With FS1 Dig
“He said they only put the stuff no one cares about on FS1. And he did it with his Boomer smile where I knew what he was mentioning.”
WFAN afternoon host Evan Roberts was listening to the station’s morning show, Boomer & Gio, and heard what he believed was a slight towards his current co-host Craig Carton Wednesday from Boomer Esiason.
“I heard Boomer this morning taking some shots at you. I did not like it,” Roberts said. “Did not like it. Big shots at my partner. He made a comment about how FOX puts stuff that no one cares about on FS1. And he meant that directly at you.”
“First off, he wouldn’t say that,” replied Carton.
“He said it. I listened. He said they only put the stuff no one cares about on FS1,” Roberts reiterated. “And he did it with his Boomer smile where I knew what he was mentioning. He wasn’t talking about anything other than his old, dear friend Craig. What a cheap shot.”
Carton, who hosts The Carton Show each weekday morning on FS1, said no one must have been listening to Boomer’s attack because he didn’t get any tweets or emails about it.
“Boomer’s probably listening — because he does listen to us — and he’s probably smiling saying ‘Evan’s right!’,” Roberts said before laughing out loud.
“If he did say it — next time — I’ll just ask a favor,” Carton asked of Esiason. “Reminder your listeners that I am on FS1 from 7:00-9:30 AM, but only until 9:00 AM this week because of World Cup soccer. If you’re gonna take a shot, it allows me to promote it. And I don’t promote it here.”
A caller later told Carton & Roberts the exact moment, down to the minute, of when Esiason made the quip about FS1. Producers then pulled up the clip, which they played on the air.
After hearing the clip, Carton joked FOX puts they stuff they don’t care about on FS2 before asking “Now I gotta figure out, do I respond or not? Or do I just let it go?” before concluding that he’s more mature than making a response.
Fred Toucher Tells Paul Finebaum: Your Greatest Talent Is Not Losing It On Callers
“What you’re actually taught in radio — and not to the benefit of people — is to move things along and cut people off.”
98.5 The Sports Hub morning show Toucher & Rich has frequently pointed out the absurdity of callers into The Paul Finebaum Show. Thursday morning, the Boston show welcomed in the southern college football host to discuss what makes his show tick.
“I can’t tell you how big a thrill this is for me, because I didn’t realize how funny our show was until I started listening to you guys,” Finebaum joked.
“Part of the brilliance of your show is you just let these people go,” Fred Toucher said. “For those that don’t know, the instinct in what you’re actually taught in radio — and not to the benefit of people — is to move things along and cut people off. At what point did you realize ‘I’m just gonna let these dudes talk and see where they take it’?”
“I listened to all these radio goobs — I mean all these people in the corner office — tell us how to do it and I realized I can’t do that. I didn’t have the radio voice, I didn’t have the style, I didn’t have the energy. So I just sat there and literally listened to callers ramble on and I started to find the humor in it.
“It hit me one day that these people don’t have a voice,” Finebaum continued. “Especially in the south where we don’t have six or seven professional sports franchises. Callers started becoming famous and becoming a part of the show. We started having lunches with them for Christmas and various other things and days and I think we realized what we had and we made the most of it. Some of these callers really defy logic. I think I’ve given four or five eulogies at various callers funerals and I think that there’s a connection there.”
Finebaum then mentioned one of his more notorious callers, Legend. The caller actually spent more than 20 years in prison after shooting someone six times. Toucher said Legend has actually called into their show but they have never taken his call.
“We don’t take Legend because we’re not gonna do as good a job with him,” Toucher said. “I told our producer, I do not want to take Legend.”
“Paul’s a master with him,” Rich Shertenlieb added.
Gregg Giannotti: CBS Won’t Show Deshaun Watson Accusers Sunday
“I think people know what’s going on. You’re not gonna show them and start trashing them on the broadcast.”
Quarterback Deshaun Watson is set to make his 2022 season debut against his former team on Sunday following an 11-game suspension. Watson has been accused of sexual misconduct, and 10 of the women who believe the now-Cleveland Browns QB preyed upon them are planning to attend the game in Houston. On Boomer & Gio on WFAN on Wednesday, co-host Gregg Giannotti had a thought on CBS cameras dedicating a snippet of the game broadcast to showing the women in attendance.
“I wonder does like the broadcast show them?” Gio asked to co-host Boomer Esiason. “Are you guys gonna have to talk about that on The NFL Today?”
“I have no idea,” Esiason responded. Boomer explained that they hadn’t had their production meeting for this week’s show, but he felt like beyond that he and Gio had already discussed the Watson situation at great length.
Still, Gio said if he were in charge of the CBS broadcast, he would find a way to show the alleged victims’ faces.
“I mean you could show them and explain the situation,” he said. “I think people know what’s going on. You’re not gonna show them and start trashing them on the broadcast.”
Once the 2022 NFL season started, and Watson accepted the suspension and began going through the various processes he needed to go through in order to be reinstated, the focus shifted away from the story. But Gio added that now that Watson is ready to play, the story gets thrust back into the limelight.
“Nobody was talking about it for weeks and weeks and weeks, and now he’s back,” he said. “And now it’s back.”
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He works full-time as a multimedia specialist at the Virginia State Corporation Commission, while also putting in part-time work for News Radio WRVA and 910 The Fan in Richmond. Additionally, you can find Jordan contributing coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly and ABC 8News. He can be reached by email at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.