Sports Media Digest- April 2, 2013

Mike Francesa Signs Contract Extension with WFAN/CBS Radio–  WFAN in New York and CBS Radio have announced that longtime afternoon drive radio host Mike Francesa has signed a contract extension that will keep him at the station through 2017.  Francesa will also bring his long running Sunday morning “The NFL Now” show toCBS Sports Radio beginning this fall.  The program is broadcast live on WFAN from 9:00AM-12:00Noon, ET and will be available to more than 250 affiliate radio stations nationwide.

More People Continue to View NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament Online–  Turner Sports, which maintains the March Madness Live site where viewers can watch the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament online, reports the project has garnered 45 million live streams, up a staggering 158% over 2012 to date.  12.6 million hours of combined live viewing has been consumed, an all-time high.

Tiger, NCAA Tourney on this Week’s Sports Illustrated Covers–  This week’s edition of Sports Illustrated looks at the resurgence of Tiger Woods as well as previewing this week’s Final Four.  There are three covers for the week:

SI 4-8-13a SI 4-8-13b SI 4-8-13c


Sports Media Digest- July 10, 2012

Bob Costas and Jerry Seinfeld Looks Back at Abbott & Costello’s Who’s on First The MLB Network’s Bob Costas will sit down with comedian Jerry Seinfeld to look back at the 60th Anniversary of the first television airing of Abbott & Costello’s legendary Who’s on First routine. Costas & Seinfeld: Who’s on First? features extensive footage of the routine that TIME Magazine named as the best comedy sketch of the 20thcentury, interspersed with comments from Seinfeld on his favorite moments and how “Who’s on First?” influenced him as a comedian, writer and baseball fan.  The program debuts Thursday at 7:00p.m. ET.

My Wish Returns to SportsCenter July 15th– For the seventh year ESPN’s SportsCenter will spotlight sports-themed wishes granted through the Make-A-Wish Foundation to children with life-threatening medical conditions.  The My Wish series debuts Sunday, July 15th on the 10:00a.m. ET edition of the program and will continue daily at 3:00p.m. through Friday, July 20th.  LeBron James, Mark Sanchez, DeShean Jackson, Kyle Busch, Rory McElroy, and Alexander Ovechkin will be the athletes featured on this season’s segments.

U.S. Senior Open Thursday and Friday on ESPN-  ESPN will once again have early round coverage of the U.S. Senior Open. First and second round coverage from Lake Orion, Mich begins at 3:00p.m. ET with Sean McDonough, Andy North and Curtis Strange.

Grantland Looks at the History Behind the Start of WFAN- Bill Simmons’ Grantland has an oral history at the genesis of WFAN, the first 24/7 sports radio station in the country.  Through interviews with 60 people who were, at one time or another, involved with WFAN, the 15,000-plus word story (from 100 hours of tape and a transcript of 1,250 pages) details, among other things: the rough start for the station; the boost given by Don Imus and the ascent and ultimately the separation of station icons, Mike Francesa and Chris Russo.

Sports Media Weekly Podcast #24- Dave Sims, Westwood One

Sports Media Weekly Thanks for checking into the latest edition of the Sports Media Weekly Podcast.

During our news segment Ken Fang of Fang’s Bites and I once again talk about how NBC is handing its coverage of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics.  On the table is how the ratings and the programming choices by NBC may impact the next round of Olympics bidding for the 2014 and 2016 Games.

Ken and I also touch upon the two week  suspension by ESPN of Tony Kornheiser from his PTI gig following the remarks he made last week about Hannah Storm’s wardrobe.  Both Ken and I feel ESPN may have overreacted a bit.

Our guest this week is sportscaster Dave Sims.  Dave is famous for his radio and television play-by-play of college basketball as well as his work as the voice of Sunday Night Football on Westwood One.  Dave is also handles television ply-by-play for the Seattle Mariners.

Sports Media Weekly Podcast #22- Neil Best, Newsday

Neil BestSports Media Weekly Neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet in the Northeast shall keep us from producing the Sports Media Weekly Podcast.

I am joined by Ken Fang from Fang’s Bites and our special guest, Neil Best, sports media and business columnist at Newsday.

The three of us lead off the week’s discussion on the record ratings for Super Bowl XLIV, the ads from the game, and whether the success of the NFL will motivate the league and the player’s association to come up with a new deal before a suspected lockout in 2011.

Other topics on the agenda include the news that ESPN is renaming its ESPN360 product to ESPN 3…How will Neil cover the sports media news coming out of the Vancouver Olympics…whether WFAN’s Mike Francesa is still an effective sports radio force…and how regional sports networks like YES and SNY plan to make a journalistic impact on the New York media market.

And yes, we do spend some time with Neil talking about the early effects of Newsday’s decision to place their online content behind the paywall…

SMJ Sports Radio Madness- Mike & The Mad Dog (5) vs. Doug Gottlieb (12)

Probably our most intriguing showdown of the opening round of the SMJ Sports Radio Madness competition…our lone local sports talk show, Mike & The Mad Dog from WFAN going up against ESPN Radio’s DOug Gottlieb.

Mike & The Mad Dog– Mike Francesa and Chris “Mad Dog” Russo bring their feisty, hard-hitting brand of sports talk to WFAN weekday afternoons from 1:00 to 6:30 PM. The Mike and the Mad Dog show debuted on the FAN in September of 1989 creating the two man talk team that is now the industry standard. Their show has been at or near the top of the ratings book ever since. Get more on Mike here. Get more on Mad Dog here.

Doug Gottlieb- Doug Gottlieb is host of ESPN Radio’s The Pulse, which debuted in December 2006 and is heard nationally 7-10 p.m. ET M-F. Gottlieb joined ESPN in September 2003 as co-host of ESPN Radio’s GameNight, which is carried by more than 300 affiliates nationwide Monday-Friday from 7 p.m.-1 a.m. ET (or starting at 7:30 p.m. following the 30-minute radio-version of ESPN’s popular Pardon the Interruption on some stations). Get Doug’s full bio here.

Voting ends March 19th


Fall Sports Radio Ratings, Part 1

The new year brings with it the release of the Fall 2007 Arbitron radio ratings.  The release of the numbers are usually done in stages.  We get our numbers courtesy of Station Ratings.  Here are the rankings of sports radio stations in the following markets…

New York (#1 Radio Market)
WFAN 2.6 (15th Rank in Market)
WEPN 0.9 (28)

Los Angeles (#2 Radio Market)
KSPN 0.9 (31)
KLAC 0.6 (37)

Chicago (#3 Radio Market)
WMVP 1.7 (23)
WSCR 1.5 (27)

San Diego (#17 Radio Market)
XEPRS 1.9 (19)

Milwaukee (#36 Radio Market)
WSSP 0.9 (21)
WAUK 0.7 (26)

These ratings numbers represent all listeners ages 12 and up.  Sports radio stations typically target men 25-54. Those numbers are not available on the website.   It’s interesting to note how sports radio plays in some markets compared to others.

We will have more to report once more numbers are released.

Game Preview- Harvard/Yale Football

The biggest game between two teams that are undefeated in their conference takes place Saturday…and few people nationally care.  But we do here at Sports Media Journal.  Its The Game…Harvard vs. Yale.  The Bulldogs (9-0, 6-0 Ivy League) will be hosting the Crimson (7-2, 6-0 Ivy League) at the Yale Bowl in New Haven.

This will be the second time both teams enter the game this late in the season with undefeated conference records.  The other time was in 1968, when “Harvard Beat Yale 29-29” (That’s not a typo…follow the link)

The best way to get ready for the action is through the local media covering the game…


The visiting Crimson hail from Cambridge and, like the other colleges around Boston, get short-changed in the mainstream media.  If you want, you can check the Boston Globe or Boston Herald to see if they are covering the game.

Detailed newspaper coverage can be found at the Harvard Crimson.  Along with daily coverage of the team, the paper also has a sports blog.

You can also get more news online at the university’s athletic website.

Boston hosts sports radio powerhouse WEEI, but don’t expect any Crimson talk there.  Harvard’s own WHRB broadcasts the game.  Whether they have any other informaton before hand, we’re not sure.


The Bulldogs are located in New Haven, so there is a better chance the sports media is paying a little more attention to the game.  The Yale Daily News has the game covered on campus while the New Haven Register also has it’s reporters on the case.

Elsewhere on the web, there are a few blogs dedicated to Yale Athletics.  For God, For Country, and For Yale is one.  Portal 31 is another.  As with the Crimson, the Bulldogs have it covered on their athletic website.

New Haven is close enough to metro New York to fall within the coverage of WFAN.  Again, don’t expect Mike and the Mad Dog to take to talking about the Bulldogs.  Yale’s WYBC may or may not talk about the game before Saturday.

There you have it.  Enjoy the game.  Tell Biff and Muffy we say hi.