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Sports Radio News

Portland, Seattle & Milwaukee’s Spring Ratings Highlights

Brandon Contes

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Sports radio listenership in the spring book was surely impacted by COVID-19 as sporting events were scarce and less people were on the road with daily commutes. Complete data for all shows was not available, but sports radio brands in Portland, Seattle and Milwaukee worked hard to combat the effects of a global pandemic. 

Portland’s 102.9/750 The Game was less impacted by the lack of sports, producing a similar year-over-year number in weekday prime (M-F 6a – 7p) earning a 3.4 share for their target demo of men 25-54. The Game topped the more localized 1080 The Fan, which did a 2.2 share. 

The Game’s strongest performance came from The Dan Patrick Show, which airs 6 – 9a and generated a 6.2 share. The DP Show was down almost three points year-over-year in Portland, but still topped 1080’s Dusty and Cam in the Morning which earned less than a 1 share. 

From 9a – noon, The Game’s simulcast of Jim Rome earned a 3.9, beating 1080’s offering of Colin Cowherd which generated a 1 share. During the noon – 3p block, The Bald Faced Truth with John Canzano turned in a similar year-over-year performance for The Game with a 3.4 share. 1080’s early afternoon show hosted by Andy Johnson and Brandon Sprague was less than a point behind with a 2.6. Data for afternoon drive wasn’t available.

Turning to Seattle, in weekday prime, 710 ESPN Seattle topped Sports Radio 950 KJR, but the pandemic caused the station to fall from 6th to 19th in the spring book which extended from March 27 – June 17. 

In morning drive, 710’s Danny O’Neil and Paul Gallant completed their second full book as co-hosts, topping KJR’s Chuck and Buck in the Morning. From noon – 3p, 710 ESPN’s midday show hosted by Tom Wassell, Jake Heaps and Stacy Rost also finished ahead of KJR. Rounding out the weekday lineup, KJR’s afternoon show with Dave ‘Softy’ Mahler and Dick Fain edged out 710’s trio of Bob Stelton, Dave Wyman and Jim Moore.

In Milwaukee, 97.3 The Game topped their sports radio competition for the full week (Mon-Sun 6a-mid). The Game earned a 1.6 share in the spring book, while 94.5 ESPN and 105.7 The Fan each did a 1.2. None of the three sports radio stations missed out on local NBA or MLB play-by-play, as news station WTMJ is the rightsholder for the Bucks, Brewers and Packers. 

Dual market host Steve Czaban finished 10th in morning drive for The Game, from 6 – 9a. Czaban’s spring book was down from his seventh-place finish in the winter quarter. Full market data wasn’t available for all shows.

Sports Radio News

Mike Rhyner Introduces Dallas to 97.1 The Freak

“So, where were we?” began Rhyner.

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Ben Torres / Special Contributor Dallas Morning News

There’s a new radio station in Dallas which features a number of personalities familiar to local sports radio listeners. 97.1 The Freak made its much anticipated debut and the first voice to be heard belonged to the ”Old Grey Wolf” Mike Rhyner.

97.1 The Eagle stopped regular programming late Monday morning and began stunting, a technique radio stations use to separate listeners from old programming and prepare them for new content. The station began by playing songs with the word “freak” in them before transitioning into a continuous loop of “The Waiting is the Hardest Part” by Tom Petty until 3p CT. Then, a voiceover detailing the Eagle’s history switched into the voice that Dallas-Forth Worth residents have gotten to know so well, Mike Rhyner.

“So, where were we?” began Rhyner.

Rhyner went on to relive his final moments at The Ticket in Dallas. He said he was getting his “head around being a Paw Paw” before getting a call from Ben Rogers of the Ben and Skin Show and thus an idea for The Freak began to take shape.

After that, the show’s intro music played and Rhyner welcomed in Mike Sirois and before you knew it, the guys were wondering about a quarterback controversy in Dallas.

97.1 The Freak is off and running with a lineup that includes “The Speakeasy,” with Jeff Cavanaugh, Kevin “KT’ Turner, Julie Dobbs, and Matt Cather in mornings (7-11am), “Ben & Skin Show” in middays (11am-3pm) and “The Downbeat” in afternoons (3p-7p) featuring Mike Rhyner alongside Mike Sirois and Michael “Grubes” Gruber.

The station is positioning itself as a lifestyle brand but given its talent connection to local sports radio and the strong interest in Dallas sports, it’s likely the talent will weave sports talk into their on-air discussions. Sports Radio 1310/96.7 The Ticket and 105.3 The Fan have enjoyed good ratings with the male 25-54 demographic and The Freak is expected to challenge them and every other brand that produces spoken word content.

“We’re beyond excited to introduce 97-1 the Freak – the level of talent is insurmountable, and we’re thrilled for the opportunity to further connect with Dallas Fort Worth,” Patrick Davis, Regional Senior Vice President of Programming Dallas, shared in an announcement.

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Sports Radio News

Howie Rose Plans to Travel for Mets Postseason Games

“Oh, I’m all-in if they play in Timbuktu,” Rose said.

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Howie Rose has cut back on his travel schedule as the radio voice of the New York Mets in 2022, but he says that no place is off limits during the playoffs.

“Oh, I’m all-in if they play in Timbuktu,” Rose told Newsday. “A lot of this was designed to make sure that I had enough reserve to be able to handle anything that comes up in terms of road trips.”

Rose, 68, readies for what is likely to be a Wild Card series start to the playoffs and because of their Wild Card status, a win there could mean a trip to Los Angeles for the National League Divisional Series.

“It’s not exactly like managing Edwin Diaz’s innings, but I think that doing the number of games that I have and more to the point, being able to take the breaks that I have, has enabled me to approach the postseason with a clear mind and the full-speed-ahead attitude that you need to have.”

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Sports Radio News

Jake Chapman Named Orlando Magic Radio Play-By-Play Voice

Chapman will make his debut as the team’s radio voice during its preseason opener tonight against the Memphis Grizzlies.

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Jake Chapman has been introduced as the new radio play-by-play voice of the NBA’s Orlando Magic.

Chapman is beginning his 10th overall season with the franchise. He has previously served as the pre-game and post-game host for the team, as well as the radio producer. He joined the club as in intern in 2006 before becoming a producer in 2009. He then joined the Detroit Pistons Radio Network in 2014 to become its pre-game and post-game host as well as executive producer. He later joined 92.3 The Fan and the Cleveland Browns Radio Network as a producer. He returned to the Magic in 2019.

Chapman will make his debut as the team’s radio voice during its preseason opener tonight against the Memphis Grizzlies.

Brandon Kravitz will serve as co-host for pregame, halftime and postgame. The network pregame show, Magic Tonight, will hit the air 30 minutes prior to tip-off. Magic Tonight is scheduled to premiere on October 11.

96.9 The Game is the radio flagship of the Magic Radio Network.

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