The news cycle never slows down in sports media. As a reminder, if you have a future news tip, press release or internal promotion to share, materials can be sent via email to JBarrett@hvy.tcp.mybluehost.me. Now here’s a look at what’s been happening across the country for the past week.
According to James Andrew Miller, ESPN has come to terms on a new contract with Mike Golic. Although the future of Mike and Mike remains uncertain, with Mike Greenberg expected to host a new show on television, all signs point to Golic being part of the network’s future radio plans in morning drive.
The Mighty 1090 in San Diego has made a change to its evening lineup. San Diego Union-Tribune columnist Kevin Acee had previously held down the evening slot. He’s being replaced by market veteran Chris Cantore, who previously co-hosted the morning show for FM 94.9
In Fort Myers, Florida, Beasley Media Group’s 99.3 ESPN has added sports talk radio veteran Craig Shemon to the station’s weekday lineup. Shemon, who has worked nationally for FOX Sports Radio and SB Nation Radio, has been hired to host afternoon drive.
Massachusetts native and former 92.9 The Game and WFNZ sports talk show host Marc James will be hosting on Monday night for WEEI in Boston. James is stepping in from 7p-10p. He continues to fill in for Jim Rome and other CBS Sports Radio shows.
Speaking of filling in, former 101 ESPN and 107.7 The Franchise host Zach McCrite has been earning some air time in Indianapolis on The Fan. McCrite worked Saturday morning, where he reunited for a segment with his former St. Louis radio co-host and longtime football coach Rick Venturi. No word yet on when McCrite will be on the air next.
Congratulations to SB Nation Radio morning host and former ESPN 980 evening host Tim Murray who has joined the sports staff of WTOP in Washington D.C. The newstalker remains one of the top revenue performers throughout the entire radio industry.
Starting Monday, 97.3 ESPN in Atlantic City will be expanding its Sports Bash Warm-up show with Rich Quinones to Noon-2p ET, re-branding the show as “Midday’s with Q“. Quinones previously hosted afternoons on 1290 The Ticket in Wilmington, DE before joining the Atlantic City sports station.
Former San Antonio sports radio host Geoff Sheen has moved to Houston to join CBS Radio. Sheen is now part of The Morning Mix on MIX 96.5 which also includes Sarah Pepper and Lauren Kelly.
On the network level, Dave Lewis has been added as a sports anchor and reporter for NBC Sports Radio.
SportsCenter anchor Jonathan Coachman has announced via social media that he will no longer be hosting the Tuesday night Off The Top Rope segment on ESPN. Coachman says he has a number of other projects taking place which require a greater focus and will but cutting back on the wrestling segment for now.
In the nation’s capital, Phil Chenier is not expected to be back as the Washington Wizards television analyst after this season. CSN Mid-Atlantic has not announced its future plans for Wizards broadcasts.
SURVEY: 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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”
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”
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.