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Jim Rome’s 23rd “Smack Off” Includes Sonnen and Passan

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23 years ago, Jim Rome launched the “Smack Off”, an opportunity for sports talk radio listeners to rant, rave and display their passion, knowledge and personality while sounding off on players, coaches, teams and regulations. Since then, the annual tradition has increased in popularity, even serving as a launching pad for a number of on-air sports radio personalities including Jay Mohr, JT The Brick and Sean Pendergast.

This year’s highly anticipated event will take place on Friday July 28th on CBS Sports Radio between 12p-3p ET. The contest will feature 25 contestants competing for a cash prize of $5,000.

In years past, high profile celebrities such as University of Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh, and retired NBA player and KNBR afternoon host Tom Tolbert have participated. MMA legend Chael Sonnen actually won the event in 2012, and has agreed to re-enter the jungle this year in search of a second victory. Yahoo MLB columnist and New York Times bestselling author Jeff Passan has also announced he’ll take the plunge this year, hoping to impress Rome and his legion of ‘Clones’.

“The first Smack Off came about because I wanted a day when only the best callers would be invited to call in to compete with each other to determine who was the best,” said Rome. “At that time, I had no idea it would become an annual tradition, let alone one that would last for more than two decades. Every year, the callers get bigger, bolder, and more creative with their ideas, so I can’t wait to find out which caller will become the next legend.”

“Jim Rome’s ‘Smack Off’ is a sports event like no other,” added Eric Spitz, Director, Programming, CBS Sports Radio. “The ‘Clones’ represent the most passionate, knowledgeable and creative sports fans around; the preparation and ingenuity they put into making their ‘Smack Off’ truly original is just amazing. This year’s contestants have their work cut out for them and I’m sure they’ll deliver just as always.”

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Field of 68 After Dark Debuts On SiriusXM Next Week

“Listeners will hear a lineup of rotating voices that includes well-known media members, former standout players, and established college basketball coaches.”

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SiriusXM’s ESPNU Radio is getting a new show on Monday. The channel will carry Field of 68 After Dark. The one-hour show is currently broadcast nightly at 11pm on the Field of 68 Media Network’s social channels and YouTube page.

Listeners will hear a lineup of rotating voices that includes well-known media members, former standout players, and established college basketball coaches. Rob Dauster and Jeff Goodman will make regular appearances. A press release says Seth Davis and Doug Gottlieb will be part of the show at times as well.

“There’s a major void right now in this space with regard to college basketball,” Dauster said. “This will give diehard college basketball fans somewhere to go each night from the start of the season through the national title game to not only be informed, but also entertained.”

Field of 68 is a podcast and digital media network focused on college basketball. The network partnered with BetRivers last year to expand into the college football space as well.

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Sports Radio News

BetQL Audio Network Adds 3 Weekend Shows

“As football season turns the corner for the home stretch, we’re pleased to introduce three dynamic Sunday shows to help bettors get ready for all the action across the sports world.”

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Audacy, Inc. continues to expand its sports betting programming portfolio with its announcement of three new Sunday shows on the BetQL Audio Network. The shows will debut this Sunday, January 16 in a move made in accordance with the end of the National Football League season, further cementing a commitment to provide football fans, and sports fans as a whole, coverage aligning with their interests.

The first show, BetQL 5 Star Weekend, will be co-hosted by CBS Sports Radio’s Damon Amdendolara and 93.7 The Fan’s Chris Mack, with 105.7 The Fan host Jeremy Conn joining the program as a guest host until February 20. The duo will use the BetQL star rating system to determine the best bets to make every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. E.S.T.

From 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday’s Bets with The Team 980 host Travis Thomas, along with BetQL Audio Network hosts Quinton Mayo and Michael Jenkins will be on the air. They will continue to preview and subsequently recap the action from a betting perspective throughout the day.

To close out the Sunday coverage, BetNation with Shaun Morash of CBS Sports Radio and Kevan Kenney of Audacy will wrap up the day and “take the pulse of the nation from a sports betting perspective.” Their program will air from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Sundays. Following the conclusion of this program, Back to the Futures will continue in its 8 to 9 p.m. timeslot, with BetQL writer Lucy Burdge joining co-host Brandon Sprague.

“As football season turns the corner for the home stretch, we’re pleased to introduce three dynamic Sunday shows to help bettors get ready for all the action across the sports world,” said Audacy Vice President of Sports Matt Volk in a statement. “These three programs will continue to put fans in position to win on Sundays, no matter the season.”

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Sports Radio News

Dan Patrick: I Was Still Looking For ESPN’s Approval After I Left

“Along with working at ESPN, both men related working at the network with the relationships they had with their fathers.”

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Dan Le Batard appeared on the Dan Patrick Show yesterday for an interview.  Le Batard and Patrick discussed each of their own experiences with ESPN.  Along with working at ESPN, both men related working at the network with the relationships they had with their fathers. 

Patrick claimed that ESPN became a sort of “father figure” to him as his father passed away when he was only 25 years old.  He continued to talk about how he wanted to make the network where he worked proud in the same way he wanted to make his father proud of him. 

“I kept looking for approval from ESPN and even when I left ESPN, I’m looking for approval as if to say, ‘man we never should’ve let you go’ so it was kind of weird.”

Le Batard explained how his father’s emotional limits made it hard for him to know whether Papí was proud of him, so he would look for that approval from the companies he worked for.  He also discussed the literal “freedom” his father gave him by moving his family from Cuba to the United States.  Le Batard’s father is fairly recognizable because he is actually a part of the show.

“To be able to share that with him and be grateful for it, I didn’t think I would ever repay the debt.  But I’m happy that I was able to show him the love that would feel like I’m trying to repay the debt because yes, I wanted that to be something that was proudly ours.  Mine and his.  It was supposed to be my tv show but I tell everyone ‘and then that ass stole it from me’.” 

It was a unique conversation for sports radio and a rare look into the emotional side of this business. Both men had very unique experiences with ESPN. It was interesting to hear their reflections on how that affected them both during their employment and after they each left.

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