It’s time to reveal America’s Top 20 local sports morning shows for 2015. Before you race ahead though to see who made the list, let me first explain how the results were produced. Although this is an inexact science and the results are subjective, I tried to create a formula that made sense. Whether it worked or not is in the eye of the beholder, but I’m comfortable with the way it turned out.
In total, 35 radio executives took part in determining these results. I did not cast a vote myself. I will though write a full column next week analyzing the results of this process and share my thoughts on the biggest takeaways.
Each member of the executive committee was given 35 shows to choose from, and asked to select their Top 20 in exact order. They were asked to use the following criteria when making their decisions:
- Strong local ratings success in 2015
- An established track record in the format
- Quality content delivered on a consistent basis
- Spent more than 2/3 of the year with the radio station
- Finished 2015 employed at the station and without the show’s lineup being changed
- Points are given for each ranking (EX: 20 points for 1st place, 1 point for 20th place)
The point system worked great because it made it easy to capture a show’s total impact among 35 different executives. That was important in determining where a show finished in the final rankings.
One thing to keep in mind, if a show didn’t generate ratings or spend the majority of the year on the air, they didn’t make the final 35. In some cases, a show may have done both, but didn’t perform as high as the 35 others. The goal was to feature the best shows for 2015, not the longest tenured show or the ones we’d draft if all were free agents.
For example, Bernie Miklasz in St. Louis, and John Fricke and Hugh Douglas in Atlanta didn’t make the list of 35 because they spent less than half of the year hosting morning drive for their respective stations. However, if we do this project again in 2017, and they remain in their current positions and perform strongly, they’d be up for consideration.
To make things fair and balanced, I sought out people for the executive committee who have worked in the format for a long period of time. Some have worked for a number of companies, and influenced brands in multiple markets. Others have remained with one group in top markets and delivered strong results for over a decade. I wanted to avoid company bias and geographical influence playing a key role in the determination of the final results, and by involving 35 members from 23 U.S cities, and 15 different broadcast companies, I think that goal was accomplished.
Some will ask for the identity of the voters to be made public, but as I mentioned previously, I promised anonymity to those who participated. That is something I will not compromise. To do so would affect future participation, and damage my relationships in the industry.
There will be plenty of debate over these selections, but I hope that you remember that the purpose of this project is to highlight those in our format who perform at a high level, and to give you an idea of who the industry’s brightest minds viewed as the format’s best in 2015.
Now without further adieu, Barrett Sports Media proudly presents “America’s Top 20 Local Sports Morning Shows” as part of “The 2015 Best in Sports Radio Awards“!
- Houston’s “In The Loop” with Nick Wright & John Lopez missed 20th place by 2 points
- “Boomer & Carton” earned 20 1st place votes & finished no lower than 6th on any ballot
- “Toucher & Rich” had 8 1st place votes, second highest among morning shows
- “Mully & Hanley” (2) & Mitch Levy (3) were the only others with multiple 1st place votes