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Mike Valenti Gets New Contract at The Ticket

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Mike Valenti

Detroit sports radio host Mike Valenti agreed to a new contract with Entercom, keeping The Valenti Showon WXYT-FM 97.1, weekdays from 2pm6pm.  Length of the agreement was not disclosed, but the extension was announced as a “long-term” contract.

“Mike is an extraordinary talent who has a great rapport with Detroit sports fans,” said Debbie Kenyon, SVP and Market Manager of Entercom Detroit. “He has built a dedicated listener base and we’re thrilled to have him on the 97.1 team for years to come.”

Valenti joined The Ticket in 2004 and moved to afternoon drive in 2007 with co-host Terry Foster when the station switched from AM radio to FM.  Foster retired from the show in April 2017, following a stroke which put him on medical leave for much of 2016.  Since Foster’s retirement, Valenti has continued in afternoon drive as a solo host.

“I value the opportunity to continue my career at The Ticket in Detroit, one of the great sports towns in the country,” Valenti said in the press release announcing his new contract.

Valenti re-upped with WXYT The Ticket in 2016, signing a 10-year contract extension while the station was still owned by CBS.  The reason for renegotiating Valenti’s contract was not reported, but since his last contract was agreed to, Valenti has become a solo host of the show and new ownership took over.  While under his previous contract, the 36-year old Valenti explored the option of moving to a larger market.

Valenti’s highly opinionated style, combined with his ratings success and New York ties made him a candidate to take over for Mike Francesa when he was set to retire from WFAN.  Valenti spent a week on-air at New York’s WFAN last summer, partnered with Evan Roberts and Chris Simms separately.

Valenti ended up staying in Detroit after Francesa’s afternoon drive timeslot was filled by Chris Carlin, Maggie Gray and Bart Scott, but last November Tony Paul of The Detroit News tweeted “heard rumblings Mike Valenti was among those offered the job, but turned it down.”  Ultimately, Francesa returned after five months of retirement, pushing Carlin, Maggie and Bart to middays.

Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.

Sports Radio News

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.”

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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.”

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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.”

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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.”

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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.”

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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.”

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