iTunes has released its list of the 25 most downloaded podcasts of 2018. The Daily, a 20-minute podcast produced everyday by The New York Times, edged out The Joe Rogan Experience for the top spot. Three sports podcasts showed up on the list. They were Barstool’s Pardon My Take, ESPN’s The Dan Le Batard Show With Stugotz, The Bill Simmons Podcast, and The Herd with Colin Cowherd.
Pardon My Take is the only one of the three in the top 15, landing at number 14. The show continues to be one of the most popular sports shows online, despite any backlash against its parent company, Barstool Sports. The show continued to welcome big name guests in 2018 including LSU football coach Ed Orgeron, John Cena, and Fox’s Joe Buck.
The inclusion of The Dan Le Batard Show With Stugotz on this list is a testament to the show’s passionate fanbase. With the show airing every weekday on ESPN Radio, it stands to reason that a number of the people downloading the podcast have already heard all or part of it each day on terrestrial radio. Le Batard was ESPN Audio’s strongest performer in a record setting year for the company.
Bill Simmons is one of the pioneers of podcasting. It is no surprise that his consistently excellent show made the top 20. Simmons continued to welcome the biggest names in sports and entertainment to his show, which has served as the flagship of The Ringer’s podcast network since the site launched in 2016.
Similar to Le Batard, Cowherd’s success in the podcasting realm is a testament to the devotion of his fanbase. The Fox Sports Radio show finished 2018 at number 22 overall on iTunes. That played the show ahead of WNYC’s popular Radiolab and The Adam Carolla Show.