Next Wednesday (2/1), sports talk radio legends Mike Francesa and Chris “Mad Dog” Russo will reunite for a two-hour appearance on ESPN’s morning show, “First Take,” with Stephen A. Smith and host Molly Qerim. Russo and Francesa co-hosted their show on WFAN, New York from 1989 through 2008 and became the template by which sports talk debate shows were often created. Smith says, “When we think about sports debate shows’ inception, in my opinion it starts with talk radio. And there is no way on earth you can talk about talk radio without bringing up ‘Mike & The Mad Dog.’ This business has changed – and flourished – because of what they accomplished as a dynamic duo spanning 19 years. They are, unquestionably, the standard. So, it’s easy to says that not only am I looking forward to having them reunite on ‘First Take,’ I’m HONORED to have them. Can’t wait.”
— Talk radio pro Gary R’Nel is named Saturday afternoon host (3:00 pm – 5:00 pm) on Audacy’s news/talk WPHT, Philadelphia. R’nel tells TALKERS, “I think it’s imperative that talk radio present shows that are entertaining and informative. Connecting with the listener one-on-one in some capacities has become a lost art. Those who do engage are among the most successful.”
— Edison Research is presenting its first webinar of the year, “Media Habits of Gen Z,” next Wednesday (1/18) at 1:00 pm ET. Edison says, “This custom study, examining media habits of Gen Z through survey research and qualitative interviews, was originally commissioned by the PRPD and presented at their annual conference recently. The findings are now being made available in a webinar. Discover how Gen Z see themselves, how they consume media, and how they share with their peers.” The webinar is being presented by Edison Research VP Megan Lazovick and senior director of research Gabriel Soto. Register here.
— Omaha Productions and ESPN announce the launch of a new podcast called “Lead By Example” hosted by Golden State Warriors president of basketball operations and general manager Bob Myers. The podcast features Myers speaking with leaders in various walks of life – from sports and entrepreneurship to politics and entertainment – to share in their experiences and the lessons they’ve learned on their journey. The first guest is Warriors star Stephen Curry and drops on Tuesday (1/17).