ESPN Radio’s national lineup of shows will soon be almost unrecognizable. After losing Stephen A. Smith earlier this year and Will Cain’s departure last month, the network has confirmed a new lineup will hit the air on August 17th.
Rarely does a network forego tweaking for a complete overhaul the way ESPN Radio is about to, but the network told affiliates today it will indeed feature four new daytime shows. Andrew Marchand of The New York Post was the first to report that possibility.
The new lineup will feature former wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson, basketball analyst and former point guard Jay Williams, and SportsCenter host Zubin Mehenti in morning drive. The trio will occupy the 6a-10a timeslot.
Johnson, Williams and Mehenti as ESPN Radio’s new morning show from 6 – 10am ET, brings to an end Golic and Wingo. Golic’s impressive run on ESPN Radio looks to be ending after more than two decades with the company. Wingo’s morning show tenure falls short of three years. Both hosts have contracts that expire at the end of this year.
The Dan Le Batard Show will continue its daily start at 10am, but it will lose an hour in the process. The show will now operate weekdays from 10a-12p. They make room for Mike Greenberg, the host of ESPN’s morning TV show Get Up who previously spent 16+ years on the network hosting alongside Golic on Mike & Mike. Greeny will fill the weekday slot of 12p-2p.
Also returning to his radio roots is Max Kellerman. The First Take star has previously hosted on ESPN LA 710 and ESPN New York, and was considered for mornings, but his responsibilities opposite Stephen A. Smith would’ve made it difficult to work on both shows. Kellerman will take over weekdays from 2p-4p ET on the network.
After Kellerman, current morning show contributor Mike Golic Jr. and basketball analyst Chiney Ogwumike will team up to in afternoons from 4 – 7pm. Evenings will feature the reunited team of Jason Fitz and Sarah Spain from 7p-9p, and Freddie & Fitzsimmons from 9p-1a.
It’s interesting to see ESPN potentially go with three two-hour shows in their new weekday lineup instead of a more traditional schedule breakdown. But with five shows from 6am – 7pm, affiliates will have plenty of flexibility in mixing local talent with syndicated programming.
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.”