Mike Francesa, Jim Rome and Dan Patrick are the three most important sports talk radio hosts around, according to a new list put together by TALKERS Magazine. Other prominent, recognizable names on the list include: Mike and Mike, Colin Cowherd, Tony Kornheiser, Dan Le Batard and Chris Russo.
While TALKERS was a bit ambiguous regarding their criteria, they did admit that “ratings and revenue are two of the major factors.” Now, although that doesn’t sound great, it’s actually a pretty fair way of recognizing influence and power.
The more reach a show has, the greater its audience and the more revenue it brings in. Even though you can’t draw a direct correlation between quality and ratings – there’s usually a reason why a lot of people all want to listen to the same thing.
Here are some of the more interesting people/shows on the list
1. Mike Francesa
2. Jim Rome
3. Dan Patrick
4. Boomer Esiason & Craig Carton
6. Mike Greenberg & Mike Golic
8. Tony Kornheiser
12. Pat O’Brien, Vic “The Brick” Jacobs and Steve Hartman
13. Dan Le Batard
18. Steve Mason and John Ireland
22. Colin Cowherd
34. Petros Papadakis & Matt Smith
37. Mitch Levy
39. Chris Russo
48. Tony Bruno
57. Stephen A. Smith & Ryan Ruocco
86. JT The Brick
A few thoughts:
1.) it’s great to see L.A. and, on a broader scale, West Coast radio get so much love on this list. For all the East Coast bloviating that the West Coast constantly has to deal with thanks to ESPN – sports radio is basically the only time we get Yankees/Red Sox/Giants/Patriots-free broadcasting. Mason & Ireland and Petros & Money/The Loose Cannons couldn’t possibly be more different – but all three bring something special to the airwaves.
2.) On the national front – it’s interesting that Dan Patrick hasn’t overtaken Jim Rome yet. Over the past year, Patrick has gotten all the major sports radio interviews out there. Apparently Rome’s far more dedicated and loyal fanbase is keeping him on top, though.
3.) Mike & Mike are awful, it’s embarrassing that they’re as high as they are. Their whole shtick is corny and dumb. In just about every way, they’re local radio hosts who accidentally stumbled onto the national scene. Really, they’re at their best when someone is filling in for them.
4.) It’s interesting that Cowherd is in the 20s. For all the controversy he’s attracted in the past you’d think he’d rank a little higher. Then again, he has mellowed out a bit over the past few years as ESPN has tried to turn him into the company's new golden boy.
5.) It’s a shame that TALKERS didn’t release actual ratings figures for these shows. It’d be interesting to see how much sway sports talk actually has these days.