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Minus New York, CBS Sports Radio To Debut

By Jed Weisberger ~ December 21st, 2012. Filed under: CBS Sports Radio, WFAN.

CBS Sports Radio, preparing to compete with ESPN Radio and FOX Sports Radio, will debut Jan. 3 in several markets.

Eight stations will carry the entire 24-hour schedule from the start. The programming will also be available on line.

Sports fans have gotten used to AM and FM simulcasting of local sports talk in both New York and Philadelphia, as well as Tampa. In both Philadelphia, Detroit and Tampa, CBS Sports Radio will debut on WIP (AM 610), WXYT (AM 1270)and WHFS (AM 1010). Local sports-talk will move to the FM dial at WIP (94.1), WXYT (1270) and WHFS (98.7).

Full programming will also debut Jan. 3 in Baltimore (WJZ-AM 1300), Charlotte (WBCN-AM 1660), Las Vegas (KYDZ-AM 1140) and Riverside, Calif. (KRAK-AM 910). CBS Sports Radio is operated by CBS Radio and CBS Sports and distributed by Cumulus Media.

In New York, however, for the time being, WFAN will continue with its program on both AM 660 and FM 101.9. The only CBS Sports Radio programming  heard in Greater New York will be the “CBS Sports Minute’’ offerings by Boomer Esiason,  John Feinstein, Doug Gottlieb and Tom Tolbert.

One must remember that original WFAN talkers Greg Gumbel, Jim Lampley and Pete Franklin, who took a national slant – especially Lampley and Franklin – did not resonate with New York sports fans.  Still, expect all local WFAN programming to move to 101.9 FM in the future.

Looking at the opening list of hosts and schedule, there are areas in which it could compete well with ESPN Radio, which has never been a favorite of this corner. Here is the debut schedule, and what listeners – in New York listeners will be able to tune in on-line – might expect:

The Morning Show, with the combination of Tiki Barber, Brandon Tierney and Dana Jacobson.   Look for Tierney, who would be an excellent local host on WFAN, to carry this. Barber always seems to put himself first, or place himself in a story, while Jacobson has to overcome those silly ESPN days at “Cold Pizza,’’ which morphed into the ultra-obnoxious “First Take.’’

John Feinstein follows in the tough late-morning slot. He’s good on the radio, has the contacts and ought to be an excellent listen.

Jim Rome pops in at mid-day. He’s glib, irreverent, controversial and also a good listen. I will take him over just about of ESPN Radio’s hosts, who are either dull or over-zealous.  He arrives from FOX Sports Radio.

Doug Gottlieb is behind the Mike for afternoon drive. He’s still developing a style, but makes his points and generates conversation.

Early evening belongs to Chris Moore and Brian Jones. Moore never stuck out during his WFAN stints, but Jones, the former Saints linebacker, may shake things up.

Scott Ferrall then rolls in from 10p.m.-2 a.m. with “On The Bench.’’ Many listeners are familiar with Ferrall and his grating delivery. This ought to be interesting, especially in markets broadcasting him in FM Stereo.

It’ll be a good listen from 2-6 a.m. with Damon Amendolara, who spent nearly a decade in Miami and had appeared on WFAN. He’s a solid sports-talk host who will easily handle the overnight crew. He’d also be solid in the spot Moore and Jones were placed in.

Will CBS Sports Radio gather a following? Overall, it appears to be a good addition, not quite ready for New York.


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