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Super Bowl Blurs Lines Between Sports and News Talk Formats

Other hosts seemed to be triggered by what they saw as political agendas and media coverage of the Super Bowl. Joe Pagliarulo was particularly critical of the Jeep commercial with Bruce Springsteen calling for unity and for Americans to “Meet in Middle”.

Jacob Conley

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Normally the genres of News Talk and Sports Talk radio are well defined within the industry, with one format rarely crossing over to the other. The Super Bowl, however is such a big event that those lines are often blurred or they disappear completely. Such was the case with Super Bowl LV on Sunday. Many local News Talk personalities from across the country took to Twitter and the airways Sunday into Monday to discuss various aspects of the big game.

Some hosts like Bernie and Sid of WABC in New York hosted an hour long Super Bowl Special on Sunday afternoon, breaking down the matchup between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Kansas City Chiefs in true Sports Talk fashion. The duo also ranked their favorite commercials on Monday’s Edition of Bernie & Sid in the Morning. Others such as Chicks on the Right, Michael Berry, Bill Spadea and many other took issue with the perceived political slant of the commercials and the coverage of the game itself by print and other media.

“We might get into the politics later in the show,” Bernie McGuirk said. ”But the Super Bowl is supposed to be fun and we want to start by naming the best and worst commercials.”

 According to Bernie & Sid, the best commercial was by Cure Auto Insurance that used the word “Opinion “as a double entendre and the worst being the Tide Jason Alexander shirt commercial.

Other hosts seemed to be triggered by what they saw as political agendas and media coverage of the Super Bowl. Joe Pagliarulo was particularly critical of the Jeep commercial with Bruce Springsteen calling for unity and for Americans to “Meet in Middle”.

Bill Spadea was not just critical of a commercial but of news media icon Dan Rather, retweeting the phrase “F You” in response to Rather’s tweet concerning the lack of people wearing masks at the Super Bowl.

“Ya gotta ignore old bitter Dan,” Spadea’s tweet read. “Irrelevant. It’s obvious that the masks have run their course. They have never prevented any virus. It was all bullshit virtue signaling. And now everyone sees it. Maybe the fake scientists will keep screaming but adults know it’s time to unmask.”

If a commercial calling for unity was met with criticism, it comes as no surprise that news headlines characterizing postgame celebrations suffered the same fate. Chicks on the Right tweeted a pair of New York Times headlines that read, “Super Bowl Celebrations Bring Super Spreader Concerns” as opposed to “Rollicking NYC Celebration for Biden Win”.

“I mean, everyone sees the bias at this point, right?”, the tweet read. “Or are there still idiot deniers out there who refuse to see what’s right in front of them?”

Michael Berry insinuates that the media paints a different picture of Tampa Bay and their quarterback Tom Brady because, according to multiple news outlets, Brady is friends with former President Donald Trump.

“Tom Brady credits Donald J .Trump for inspiring him to victory.” Berry tweeted. He  also tweeted that “Tom Brady’s win proves God favors Donald J. Trump” along with retweeting the statement, “The intent of many in the media today is to humiliate others, strip them of dignity, reveal their pathetic fallibility — all to confirm a worldview in which they are good and their perceived enemies, for reasons personal and political, are bad.”

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Ben Shapiro: Donald Trump Endorsing People Doesn’t Carry a Lot of Power

During his show on Wednesday, Shapiro said Trump may hold power over the Republican party but when it comes to local political races, there are other factors at play.

Ryan Hedrick

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AFP/Getty Images/Jason Kempin

Syndicated radio host and author Ben Shapiro suggested that an endorsement from former President Donald Trump is not the golden ticket it’s portrayed to be.

During his show on Wednesday, Shapiro said Trump may hold power over the Republican party but when it comes to local political races, there are other factors at play.

“So, there’s a difference between Donald Trump endorsing a person, which I don’t think has a lot of power. And Donald Trump is destroying people,” Shapiro said via Mediate.

“He (Trump) actually talked about how Brian Kemp was terrible and horrible and no good and very bad. And Brian Kemp won because he had earned the loyalty of the Republican voting base in Georgia, despite Trump’s anger at Brian Kemp.”

Shapiro concluded that “Trump does not have the sort of stranglehold the media thinks he has on the Republican Party.” 

Recently, Pennsylvania Senate candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz is one Trump-endorsed candidate that has backed away from the former president.

An Axios analysis of Oz’s social media and campaign website uncovered that the Republican candidate is no longer lauding his Trump endorsement ahead of the midterm elections this fall.

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Longtime WIBC News Anchor Retires After Nearly 30 Years

Stan Lehr is calling it quits with his final day coming July 1.

Ryan Hedrick

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Longtime WIBC-FM news anchor Stan Lehr is calling it quits after nearly 30 years behind the microphone. The Indianapolis Star reports that Lehr’s last day will be July 1. 

WIBC is owned by Emmis Communications who last week announced a move to sell its Indianapolis radio properties to Maryland-based Radio One. Lehr’s retirement reportedly had nothing to do with the news of the impending sale. 

“This will bring to an end a long chapter in the station’s history,” WIBC News Director Chris Davis wrote in his email. “His reputation as a stickler has been widely-known in the industry for decades.” 

Davis described Lehr as a “stickler” who never wanted recognition for his work. 

“Instead, he made it clear to all who work or have worked with him that strong writing, accuracy, and excellence in delivery are the best ways to serve the listeners,” added Davis. 

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WWL, FEMA Unveiling New Emergency Broadcast Studio

The news conference will occur at 9 a.m. CT, leading to official remarks, Q&A, a tour of the facility, and a live demonstration at the WWL PEP station emergency studio. 

Eduardo Razo

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FEMA and Audacy’s WWL-AM/FM will present the unveiling of an all-hazards upgrade to the “Primary Entry Point” facility on June 28th. 

The news conference will occur at 9 a.m. CT, leading to official remarks, Q&A, a tour of the facility, and a live demonstration at the WWL PEP station emergency studio. 

Some of the speakers at the event will include Erik Hooks, Deputy Administrator, FEMA, and Kevin Cassidy, Senior Vice-President, Market Manager, Audacy-WWL. 

“The modernization to the emergency studio increases WWL’s resiliency to continue broadcasting under all conditions, including natural disasters and acts of terrorism,” the statement said which Barrett News Media obtained. “This facility is one of 77 across the country that serve as a National Public Warning System Primary Entry Point (PEP) station, participating with FEMA to provide emergency alert and warning information to the public before, during and after incidents and disasters.”

“WWL is the 15th radio station in the country to work with FEMA to complete the all-hazards upgrade, which includes increased sheltering capabilities, expanded broadcast capacity, and sustainable power generation for all types of hazardous events.”

Anyone attending the event will arrive at check-in 15 minutes before the press conference starts.

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