Sunday, January 18, 2015

Live By the Ratings . . . .


Does the recent sports-talk radio ratings -- what do we call it?  blip? slide? anomaly? outlier? trend? -- mean anything?  I suppose if we knew the right word to use, we'd have our answer.

The improved Fan ratings probably do have something to do with its affiliation with the Cowboys.  So we probably won't have our answer until a quarter or two's worth of ratings books come out and we can see what's up.

There are a couple of things I can say about this, having heard from a radio guy I trust on this subject:

--   Don't discount the loss of listeners to sports-talk generally.  Some of the hit to The Ticket's ratings is almost certainly because people are turning to music, not other sports stations.

--   Ticket management is not discounting the recent ratings.  "Concern" may be too strong a word, but my source does note -- and I think we can all hear this just listening to the station -- that the CTO are  cracking down on time management and making sure that the hosts to to breaks on time.  Even The Hardline, which only rarely shows any interest in the clock, seems to have gotten religion, at least temporarily.  Even The Orphanage kept one eye on the clock yesterday.

--  The on-air talent is also not brushing this off.   I heard from someone whose claim to have Ticket ties I tend to credit that there is an overall sense, perhaps not shared by all hosts, that there is a need to "step up their game."   Have we not heard more from Mike R since these ratings books began to appear than we've heard from him in ages?  (And isn't The Hardline somewhat better?)

--  There is no industry scuttlebutt about major changes at The Ticket in the foreseeable future.  Any buttholding would have to be for something pretty marginal that hasn't escaped The Ticket bubble, at least as far as industry insider dirt is concerned.

Don't submit a comment that I'm Predicting The End of The Ticket, OK?  Sure, after a couple decades and guys getting older and richer there will be some changes someday.   I will suggest that if people get fed up with a show or a host and start wandering to other sportsy stations or returning to music, it's hard to get those lost listeners back by those same shows or hosts all of a sudden "stepping up their game" or taking their show responsibilities more seriously.  Maybe the Cowboys being with The Fan have skewed matters -- but that's why stations want those franchises, to get people to move that dial, give them a try when they wouldn't have done so otherwise; maybe they'll stick around if they like what they hear or even just get used to the new voices.

I think The Musers should revive their campaign to have Cumulus spring for a billboard, maybe one of those electronic things that are popping up.

Tough business.



See you at TicketStock.  Probably won't try to get a booth this year, but if the harvest is good maybe in the coming year I can put away some coin, get a booth in 2016, print up some T-shirts to sell, hire some redhead booth tunas, have some fun with The Confessors.

105 comments:

Anonymous said...

I, for one, am not turning back to music. How many times can you listen to "Walk This Way" or for that matter "All About That Bass"?

My departure for music or political talk only occurs during the eight minute break between Ticket segments.

mrwo1 said...

Making sure you get to commercials on time. Yeah that's the ticket to ratings success.

Anonymous said...

Hey cool. Back to the days of clock over content. Maybe the years of complacency and laziness is finally biting them in the ass more than they realize. No camp out, compound, etc hasn't gone unnoticed by the hardcore P1.

Anonymous said...

"No camp out, compound, etc hasn't gone unnoticed by the hardcore P1."

Absolutely true. Some of the Ticket personalities are fat and happy. It's inevitable after sustained success, and just plain getting older. The guys just aren't hungry. And as much as I can't stand anyone at 105.3, I will give them this: they ARE hungry.

Something I was thinking about today, too; DFW is one of the fastest-growing population centers in the country. None of these new people have any particular local allegiance or awareness. They don't know about or care that The Ticket has been a part of the community for 20 years. They just look for a station talking sports. I would bet a wooden nickel this is where a lot of the audience growth is coming from for 105.3.

The Plainsman said...

mrw01, with appropriate respect I believe your sarcasm is misplaced. I would think that breaking on time for commercials is important for at least two interrelated reasons.

First, while sponsors may not pay for an ad to run at a time measured right down to the minute, they want their message to stand out and be heard, to be separated from other commercial messages by quality content.

Second, a station must get a predetermined number of ads in during a certain amount of time during a particular show for which the sponsor has bought time. If a segment runs long, then to get the ads in as promised another segment has to run short. Short segments = abbreviated and probably inferior content = those giant ad clusters bunched annoyingly close to one another = bad overall presentation and irate listeners.

These two concepts are tied together because when ad blocks run too close together, the likelihood that a listener will tune out is increased not just because they had to listen to a crappy too-short segment of content in between, but because that's just too frackin' many ads in too short a time.

So "the clock" is important not only to advertisers who want their ads to stand out, but to program directors (The Pan-America One, for example) who want shows to sound good and each segment to offer enough content to keep people tuned in.

So yeah, I'm sympathetic to my leader Jeff Catlin in his efforts to get his hosts to act like radio pros.

Anonymous said...

I believe what we're seeing is not so much the slow and inevitable decline of The Ticket, so much as the decline of sports talk radio on am or fm radio.

Hence the beginning of the leveling out, ratings wise, between the stations.

The comment about the phenomenal growth in the DFW area is very important. It is definitely a factor.

Like every industry, unless you maintain tip top standards, as the overall market grows, your product will fall to the median.

The Ticket is experiencing such a trend. Alas, I don't think it will ever regain its dominance. It is full of fat cats who are enjoying the fruits of their long ago labor. The hosts that make the station what it is will not change. If you think that Jake, TC, Sean, Fahy, the Sirois, etc., have the talent to eventually take over and keep the what was once and in radio terms still is a juggernaut going, well, you are delusional. The dynamics that went in to making The Ticket the Little One and in turn THE TICKET, were once in a lifetime (if that) luck, perspiration, and again, luck.

I'm sorry, or as Norm would say, sawree, but as talented as a few of the above mentioned are, they are no, zilch, zero, different from talent their same age, with the same experience (professionally and personally in this market...and ALL cutting their chops / copping The Ticket), on the other stations. It's a push. And it truly is. I'm sorry to say to you Jake, TC, IJB, Justin M, Sean, Sirois, fans, that your heroes are no different from the K&C Masterpiece, KT, B&S, and all the rest. They aren't.

The dynamic has changed so drastically from when The Ticket began till now it's unrecognizable.

There is no longer anything unique. There is no longer anything truly local.

Yeah. It is over. Enjoy what we have of the old days while it lasts. Though there's not much left to enjoy. Even from those who where there and are still broadcasting. (Looking at you Rhyner., Yeah, Rhyner.)

The Plainsman said...

I've sampled all of the shows you've mentioned, and G-Bag, and others, and I would much, much rather listen to either Cirque or Shake than any of those others.

Of course the dynamic is going to be different with different guys from a different generation of broadcasting. But there is nothing inevitable about "leveling off," as 252 suggests. Station and program directors are still looking for the talent and teams that are going to click with listeners, and sometimes they succeed.

Several commenters have predicted the decline and eventual demise of terrestrial radio, but it does seem to be hanging on. (A couple of folks above seem to think the audience in the metro may be growing.) And the enthusiasm for sports certainly isn't decreasing hereabouts.

All good things do come to and end and the current Ticket lineup is one of them. But I think the current ratings slide, if it is real, has more to do with the dynamics of true competition than with industry-structural trends. Some of The Ticket hosts and shows do need to sharpen up their presentation, and I think you can hear them doing so.

John in Plano said...

Speaking of ads, the Ticket has way more than its competition. And not just ads, but tickers, traffic, etc. Their breaks are interminable at times.

I've bitched about this here before and I'm about to bitch again. Some days on my commute to and from work, I hear maybe 5 minutes of actual Ticket talk. My commute is 20-25 minutes.

So yeah, I switch over to the "other two" during breaks. I just want to hear some sports talk/bits on my drive, not commericals and whatever other obscure product such as gay not gay. Maybe others are sick of hearing ads and searching for a sports talk station that actually has some, you know - sports talk.

Commercials may pay the bills, but too many drive away the listeners. It's well-known that the Ticket is basically propping up the other stations that don't make money, but they're in danger of killing that golden goose.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm... No Sea Bass. Suspicious.

John in Plano said...

Just to elaborate on my 9:19 comment...

I get in the car to go to lunch at 11:50 today. I catch about 30 seconds of Norm's last segment. Then ads, ticker, more ads. At this point I'm halfway to my destination.

I hear 3 minutes of Norm/BAD mix, then more ads, ticker, ads. At this point it's 12:17, I've reached my destination and I'm out of the car.

So did I listen to 15 minutes of ads and tickers on my drive? Hell no. I listened to G-Bag douching it up. They were at least talking about the games I watched yesterday.

Dude, this is a problem.

The Plainsman said...

John in Plano makes a valid point. There are periods of The Ticket Day where one can go for long periods of time without hearing much of any content of any kind other than ads, promos, and sometimes very long produced intros (like today's BaD radio open, for example).

blergoyen said...

So who can predict what will actually happen if, however likely or not, the Ticket continues it's ratings fall? When would the Ticket stop being the Ticket and what would it become? In to what time slot would the Dallas radio cockroach Chris Arnold be shoe-horned? I can't imagine the Ticket PTB would copy the Fan if they started pulling a consistent, close 2nd place every quarter.

deezy said...

I don't know if he talked about it this morning (I overslept), but Junes lost Lucy this weekend. I thought I'd encourage y'all to stop by and drop him a note if you feel so moved.

http://juniormiller1310.blogspot.com/2015/01/lucy.html

(this may bring a tear to your eye)

John in Plano said...

I am convinced The Fail figured this out a while ago and adjusted their clock so that they will be talking when the Ticket is spewing ads and various other nonsense. This is one reason I do not like the "always break on time" rules that cater to advertisers, not hosts or listeners.

birq said...

Regarding 207's comment about the campout, etc.: I was thinking the other day about the lack of extra effort at the Ticket lately. They go on sports trips sometimes, but it's still entire shows traveling together so there's no interaction among the varsity, and it's the interaction among the varsity that makes these things the most interesting from a loyal P1s' perspective.

So, there's WED, Ticketstock, Summer Bash, Fight Night and a smattering of GNOs. WED is still a must-listen for me even though I thought this year's was the weakest. Ticketstock and Fight Night don't move my needle at all and never have. Summer Bash is marginally interesting because it's close to my home. A GNO is a mail-in and 90% of it isn't broadcast.

Looking back, most of the Charity Challenge events had some gold about them, the Compounds were great and the campouts were, IMO, the best of all. Yes, they're a pain in the ass for the hosts and probably a logistical nightmare, but they were P1 radio gold because it put all the shows together in the same place at the same time and let them mix and mingle in ways that would've never been possible otherwise. Sending the Musers to South Texas or London, or THL to Chicago doesn't even come close to being a substitute.

@252, can you please elaborate on "There is no longer anything unique. There is no longer anything truly local" and how that relates to the Ticket? They're still mostly unlike anything else you can find, and they're 100% local from 5:30a to 7:00p. I'm just curious what you meant by that.

The Tricky Kid said...

Last November, the station has a Girl's Night Out in Denton and judging by the low turnout, looked like a disaster. During a roundtable discussion, Corby said something to the effect of "Hey, it's all good, everything is alright" to which Gordo said, "You sure about that?". I thought it was a foreboding sign that things at The Ticket are NOT fine right now.

Several good points being talked about here as to the root-cause for what is going on here. In addition, I think The Ticket has become too afraid to push the envelope. Case in point, someone on The Ticket reddit page posted a Hardline bit from years ago called Country Cream which I have linked below. It is jaw-droppingly funny and out there. And I doubt anyone on the station has the balls to try anything remotely as controversial today. Everyone is afraid to lose their jobs. Back in the day, the station didn't give a crap and didn't self-police themselves to the extent they are doing today.

When Howard Stern left 97.1 FM in the 90's, The Ticket became my go to station because it was the perfect mix of talking sports, asking chicks how big were their boobs were and being generally funny as hell. Now, the hosts are so deathly afraid of saying something too controversial that will get them fired, that everything comes across as neutered and safe.

The genie is not being put back in the bottle on this one with their Cumulus overloads in tow. Perhaps the JV team of Jake, TC, the Sirois, etc, can help re-ignite the fire so that we don't completely lose this currently generation to the Fan or ESPN.

Country Cream Bit:
http://thesummerofsteve.blogspot.com/2008/07/requested-ticket-bit-country-cream.html

Charles Golden said...

Are there any stats/ratings to back up the idea that the audience for sports talk is dropping across the board?

I only ask because I know I listen to less of it these days and it's primarily due to there being so many podcasts out there. With a podcast I get to choose exactly what I want to listen to and also don't have to fight through nearly as many ads or commercials. I can also download a podcast so I'm not dependant on wifi. I may be squarely in the minority but I listen to just as much sports talk/guy talk, I just choose to do it via podcasts than actual radio.

And a portion of those podcasts are ones put out by the ticket as well, so sometimes even when I'm listening to the ticket, it's not via the stream.

Charles Golden said...

Another somewhat random question, does anyone actually like "tickers?" Is there anything they ever say in a Ticker that you don't already know. And I know all the sports stations do it now, it just seems like a time waste to me. I'd much rather the segment be one minute longer than have to listen to a Ticker.

And don't even get me started on Ticker teases......

pk said...

No way they bring Chris Arnold back. That would be over the top douche. Now the Hammer....

ross said...

Long time listener & I wish nothing but the best for the station, however I've been listening much less frequently myself. Here's what happened with me.

It all started with the Serial podcast. I've listened to a few podcasts here and there over the years, but the download & sync process was a big enough pain that it prevented me from going deep. Serial was so good that it forced me to find a better setup.

I "did my research online" and paid $5 for a quality podcast app (rarely will I pay for apps). Quickly I discovered how many other shows you can listen to on demand, downloaded directly to your phone

Now I've got many hours of quality talk to listen to during the commute. Sports, entertainment, comedy. More than I can listen to.

Turning on The Ticket suddenly feels like rolling the dice. There is always a chance for audio gold or a solid HSO, but there's also a chance for 10 minutes of commercials and a dud segment.

I'll keep tuning in here and there, but the idea of listening to exactly what I want during the commute makes for a much better ride.

BTW - this isn't death of the station talk. I'm just one person, your mileage may vary etc... etc...

Anonymous said...

The ticker once served a genuine purpose. These days it's just a way to split up more commercials and give the hosts some extra down time.

John in Plano said...

Now it's time for "Let Me Tell You Something."

Though the hosts are on the air for only 3-4 hours a day, their job requires them to keep up on a lot of stuff. That means watching a lot of games and keeping very current on lots of sports and lots of players. It's a great job (I believe), but requires a ton of commitment and passion to be good at it.

Currently, it doesn't seem like most of the hosts are committed or passionate. Corby would rather be golfing with his buddies or doing family stuff. Danny is running a bar and playing gigs. Mike seems the least interested in the world of sports. His passion seems to be in his many musical projects. George - I have no idea, but he doesn't seem very insightful or connected. Junes cares about The Spurs and Oklahoma. Everything else seems vaguely familiar to him. Gordon has been really off for a while; he just seems in a rut on uninterested. Dan is Dan (and my leader), and Donnie is a great broadcaster, but only really seems knowledgeable on the Cowboys.

That leaves Sports Sturm and Norm, who are still very engaged and very passionate.

Now this is fine, sorta, if a few of the hosts are in periods of funk. But when so many of them seem to be only mildly interested in their radio career, that's a problem. I mean, if covering the same stuff for 20 years is a drag (and I bet it is), at least keep it lively with bits or events. But even that is waning. The Old Gray Wolf once sagely stated "We can do what they do, but they can't do what we do." I'm beginning to wonder how much water that holds, in light fo the fact they don't really do it any more.

Brad Gilbert said...

I will agree that a combination of commercials plus Spotify/Podcast does change my listening habits. With both Spotify/podcast (Listen up. I'm not a paid advertiser) I can choose what I hear & when I hear. If I hadn't "grown up" listening to these guys & have an attachment, I wouldn't listen at all.

Anonymous said...

this is a Cowboys bump, nothing more.

just like 1033 had a Rangers bump back in the world series years.

when you're the flagship station for a team that's experiencing a historic season, the bandwagon jumpers tune in.

James said...

Charles, to answer your question: I like the Tickers in general, but hate the generic quotes that somehow end up in them. Rather than play an athlete saying "At the end of the day, we just need to execute and let things take care of themselves", I'd rather listen to ten seconds of dead space.

Celery said...

I think Anon 2:52 is spot on. Several years ago, a friend of mine moved to Dallas. He was 25 at the time and is an avid sports enthusiast. I asked him if he had become a P1 yet when I saw him shortly after his move. De didn't know what I was talking about (he had moved from Austin). When I tried to explain it to him, he had not even heard of The Ticket. He was listening to, I guess, ESPN, or whatever the other alternatives were when he moved. Point is, with the massive relocation of the country, it makes sense that sportsy types might find the blowhards at national stations easier to get into since they were probably already listening. These listeners have no allegiance to anything related to D/FW-they are mostly transplants. I am guessing there a a number of people, who like me, had to relocate elsewhere and listen via stream. The influx of people just dilute the P1 factor.
One other thing that hasn't been specifically addressed. BAD radio was once discussing the negotiations the Stars play by play crew were going through. One of the things Bob emphasized was that the two man Daryl and Ralph, essentially, had nothing to do with each other outside of their hockey gig. Really, I think he was also saying the same thing about his cohorts with the exception of some events like Donnie getting some recognition from his church. Those guys don't hang out. Which goes all the way back to the beginning. For the most part, the hosts lived with each other and lived all aspects of their lives with each other. And now they moved on. And it's not the same. Clearly from the comments the camp out and compound were fan favorites. I didn't like them after the second go around because they did the exact same thing (kinda like Cowboys camp coverage, Muser outings where Gordon does the same stuff, etc). I don't think the station is going away any time soon. But at the same time, every time I get to visit my family in the D/FW area, another place I loved growing up is gone. It happens and it sucks. The same thing will happen some day with The Ticket. For me, I would love it if some day when this thing has run its course, the current line up has a final round table, wraps up the discussion, and then Jeremy hits the drop button for enough gun shots to send all the hosts into their next career (or retirement)-go to radio silence.

Town of the Cow said...

I think you should get a booth at Ticketstock. GIML got a booth back in 2010 and forum post totals increased by 6.7% that year.

The Plainsman said...

Yeah, but that was just because GIML had the Cowboys that year . . . .

(For casual flybys: GIML = Grubes Is My Leader, celebrated Ticket message board)

Gopher said...

Tricky Kid: As far as the country cream bit goes, I don't know if you could do that anywhere in America on over the air radio and get away with it these days. Between Stern, Opie and Anthony and a few others the FCC switchboard would blow up if they did that now. That is why you don't see them dump and chase anymore.

The Compound and Campout need big budget sponsors and with todays economy that may be a tall order to fill. My biggest fear for the Ticket is the owners. The Dickey brothers are radio anthrax. What they did to popular station KSFO in San Francisco and another station in Atlanta is criminal. They have pretty much neutered WBAP in this market.
BTW: I saw a G Bag Nation sticker on a car this weekend. How long has it been since you have seen a Ticket sticker on a vehicle?

Nate Nutsack said...

What's the over/under on Ticketstock attendance? I, for one, have not been since 2010/2011 at the old Plano Center. Randy Johnson does get my baseball pants crazy, but I'll just probably hear the roundtable on the radio.

Anonymous said...

I think this is where as much as you love and "get" The Ticket, you don't understand how it got to be the way it is, and by extension why you do love it, because of your coming to it after it had been on for over 10 years, Pman.

celery hits upon it when s/he talks about the early years and the bonds that came out of them due to their living, partying, going to games, and whatnot together. It's those bonds, that were being related in detail on-air on a daily basis, and even being shared in person with the listener, that made The Ticket the thing you fell in love with. There was no social media, the internet was still mostly the wild West back then. It was a different world. They HAD to interact on a weekly basis, and in an up close and personal fashion, with the listener. That's how the bond was created. You could have a beer with Followill, Gordo, Joonz, Corby, and Davey on ANY given night of the week. They'd let you know on air where they were going to be partying that night!

To say that there's nothing inevitable about there being a leveling off, while logically-possibly true, is in reality wrong. The JV hosts (Jake, Sean, and Sirois) are already going their separate ways-marriage, moving to the burbs, kids, and the rest.The ones who are still single, hanging out with each other, and up for anything, will play no part in the station's future. If you seriously think Mino, Fahy, Justin, Machine, and the rest are going to be morning, mid, and pm drive hosts at a top 5 market, you're mistaken. They're not. They all do a nice job hosting Top Tens, making extended show intros, producing, hosting/filling in on post game shows, and doing Tickers, but they are not special talents when it comes to hosting. Nor will they ever be. Just listen to Sports Saturday and Sunday. Same goes with Sean and Ty. The only two that MIGHT are the Sirois and Jake. Of those, the Sirois are an edgier, less jock sniffing Ben and Skin. We see how that's working out for The FAN (and at ESPN and the first go around at The FAN). Jake "gets" The Ticket. Jake loves The Ticket. Jake could eventually be somewhat comparable to, and play the role of, say, what Coop did during the first few years of the station. Maybe. He still has a lot of growing up to do. Let's say he does play that role down the road. That's not The Ticket "brand," but rather a respite from the bits ahoy, pop culture, boobs talk. He'd be (and is now) a straight man, a (at this juncture a wannabe) sports authority. Even so, it's one host, not a lineup. And honestly, it's debatable how long many listeners would want to listen to him after a few months of regular exposure. We heard a lot of Jake over this recent dry dock. It was a mixed bag, for sure. Ditto the reaction to him.

It is that "started from the bottom now we here," in the trenches, bunker mentality that came from camaraderie COMBINED with innate broadcasting/personality gifts that made The Ticket what it is. What also played a role is that you had both the elder statesmen like Rhyner who was already a bit of a legend from KZEW and who'd been around and seen it all, crazy hick done it all Greggo, newly minted family man George, and then single and cruising late 20s Joonz with the early 20 somethings (Gordo, Davey, Follow, etc.). You had a likeminded, like-willed, eclectic bunch who ALL got it and got it in the same way.....with the above "started from the bottom" bunker mentality. They lived and breathed it and did it right along with the listener. It ain't like that anymore. The times aren't like that. Technology has killed it (like it has so many other forms of media). The JV isn't like that, either. In any way, shape, or form. They are very MUCH alike their competitors. You are familiar with them, so you prefer them. Understandable. But to the new or casual listener, not so much. There will be indeed a leveling off.

Anonymous said...

Couple of questions/points:
- I wonder how the Fan getting the Rangers games this year will effect the ratings landscape? Seems to be a 3 or 4 hour disruption in the schedule at various times of the day including the occasional get away day game. Not sure this helps the Fan
- Ratings dip (whether temp or not) not withstanding I often ponder how much of this current analysis of the Ticket is nothing more than Good Ole Day Syndrome or Old Man Syndrome - you know everything looks better and is romanticized through the lens of time. From my perspective there are still bits of Gold every bit as good as some nebulous memory of yester year. For example the June 5th 2014 WTDS may be the best 30 minutes of Ticket Radio I have ever heard.
- I have really grown to appreciate BaD radio and their combo of high intensity sports talk combined with humor, wit and a cultural sensibility that defies most of the other shows IMO.
- Agree with the sentiment here that an occasional campout or compound would be an excellent idea.

Anonymous said...

Anybody have any info on when the UnTicket will be back on line with the full daily archives? Not having ability to listen/re-listen daily sucks.

Anonymous said...

Gopher beat me to it. The absence of a compound or campout could just be the lack of a sponsor to pick up the tab. That's not a talent problem - that a sales problem.

On the other hand, it only takes one or hosts to say "I don't want to do it again" to seal that deal.

Anonymous said...

Well, dang it. I sent in a long comment yesterday, spent a bit of time on it, nothing scurrilous in it, and it didn't pass muster.

Again, dang.

kmclain3 said...

The Musers segment at 8:20 this morning is a shining example of those guys being the best. For those that missed it...Junior talking about putting his good puppy dog down over the weekend. He got a little choked up but Gordon and Jub did a fantastic job keeping him and the segment together.

I have heard IJB boys discuss how great those guys are to work with and I think that segment illustrated what they mean by that.

Stay hard Lucy!

Anonymous said...

I know some people think it's impossible that one host or ticker guy could drive away listeners, but I know more than a handful of solid P1s who do not listen to Norm and BAD anymore because of the beating that is TC. With every ebrake and "ragonk", he proves to be a huge embarrassment to the station. It might be time for a bigger shake up at the ticket, but this is a no brainer.

Anonymous said...

I have been a Ticket listener since the day the station went on the air and I admit that I have not been listening as much over the last few months. Main reason is I can't stand the Cowboys and listening to segment after segment about that organization gives me major tired head. I can't stand The Fail or ESPN so I listen to more music now.

Also agree that the JV is terrible. If Jake and TC are the future then the station doesn't have a chance. I know there are a lot of apologists for these 2 on this site including the PM but, when either of them are on the air for an extended period of time I'm out.

When the Musers and HL hang it up this thing is done.

Anonymous said...

@Gopher

Holy crap! I say a car this morning with a "the Fan" sticker and a "G Bag Nation" sticker (amongst many, many other weird ones). I couldn't believe it. First one ever.

Shaggy said...

You can listen to the UnTicket archives if you sign up and pay a monthly fee. I'm guessing they're done hosting it for free.

Anonymous said...

"Anybody have any info on when the UnTicket will be back on line with the full daily archives? Not having ability to listen/re-listen daily sucks. "

The reason it went offline is too many people (like yourself) using it as a primary listening method.

Anonymous said...

@9:04 - I agree with everything you said.

"Jake "gets" The Ticket. Jake loves The Ticket."

He does. But Jake could never CREATE The Ticket. He can only copy from the template already created. That will not keep it going. It's just learned duplication.

I like the point you made about in the early days, you could hang out with the guys. When I first got hooked, I went and searched out some articles to catch up. One of the things that struck me in an Observer(?) piece was when they said you could find the guys at your local watering hole and just hang out with them.

well, that is no longer even remotely true. And it's changed a lot even in the last few years. Early in my listening days I ran into Rhynes, Danny, Grubes and Sirois regularly. I haven't seen any of them (or any other personalities) in years. They are not a part of the community as they used to be. Hell, even if you go to a remote of GNO, it's clear they do not want to interact with the P1.

And that's fine. They gotta be who they are. They owe the P1 nothing. But it HAS changed.

East Texas P1 said...

@Anon 10:21
@Gopher

Was in Costco this past weekend and saw a girl wearing a 105.3 tee shirt.

I have one Ticket tee but don't wear it very often. Not sure where a person would go to get one if one so wished. Maybe a road show?

Anonymous said...

Of course the guys arent going to be hanging out in bars 4 nights a week anymore. They're all in their 40's. It would be strange if they did.

Anonymous said...

The Crow Line segment is absolutely terrible. Way too much Jake & TC. This is the reason why ratings are dwindling. Way too much air time for guys like that.

Anonymous said...

904 here...

I just wanted to say that what I'm explaining isn't, nor has anything to do with, old man or good old day syndromes. I'm only trying to evince HOW The Ticket got to where it is, and how unique those circumstances and personalities were. The aspect of the circumstances alone, which cannot possibly be approximated much less duplicated due to social media, etc., preclude it from happening again.

So, it's not about romanticizing the past. Sure you can do so, but it has nothing to do with what I'm saying. Yes there are moments of radio gold, but the gold, on the whole, is of a different sort. And it's glutted market out there; thus the gold isn't worth what it was once. If ESPN and The FAN went kaput tomorrow, the story might be different. They, however, aren't going anywhere.

Anonymous said...

Well, 157, I don't know how old you are, but if you think 40 and 50+ year olds hitting the bar 4 nights per week is weird, you obviously don't hit the suburban bars. But that's not the point. And neither was it the point of what I was talking about. Those days are over. They've been over for a long long time now. You couldn't bring them back if you tried. The times and the circumstances of the market (and the world) have changed. The glue doesn't go back into the bottle once it's been squeezed out.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have a link to the latest ratings? I was not aware that the Ticket had not won another month.

Anonymous said...

Who was the ticker guy filling in for Sean this AM? First I've heard him. Thoughts?

Anonymous said...

Completely perplexed...how could anyone, I mean anyone, argue that TC brings anything to the table? The emptiest of bags. If they kept him on the Top 10 or weekends is one thing, letting him have an open mic for any of the main shows is completely different. I also think Jake is "guilty by association", and should really consider distancing himself for the sake of his professional career even if they are good friends.

Anonymous said...

@2:01

So I'm guessing you don't want a segment reviewing their internet IJB call of the Cowboys game!?

So Anonymous said...

hope you weren't a huge p1 of the mix between the weekend shows.

Anonymous said...

OK. I'm still holding onto my butt from a week ago, per Gypo Nolan's advice. Now So Anonymous is telling me that the weekend mixes are gone.

If SA is correct, then why? How on earth would that bring in more listeners and/or ad revenue? Isn't the mix part of what makes The Ticket gel?

SA has laid some solid info in the past, so I'm not going to discount it out of hand. But it doesn't really add up. Perhaps someone (e.g., SA) can explain to me why it makes sense?

As to GN and butt holding. I think the original GN, the one who used to leave the comment and something would actually go down a few days later, is not the person behind the latest butt holding. I don't think the real GN has sniffed around here in quite a long while.

Anonymous said...

The 11:50 mix on saturdays is always one of the funniest segments of the entire broadcast week.

T4 In Rockwall said...

Regarding someone saying they've posted something only to have it vanish like a fart in the wind...that's happened to me at least 3 times. It's to the point where when I publish, I will select all of my text and copy, just in case it happens again.

The Plainsman said...

Whoa, somebody fill me in. Are weekend mixes a thing of the past?

Anonymous said...

If the weekend mix post is true, it's likely due to clock management. The Orphanage and Cirque are always saying how late they are due to the extended mixes that start their shows. Even though it's great radio (especially the Orphanage/Cirque mix), hitting those all important Reagor Dykes spots is clearly more important.

Can we at this point start asking what the hell Cat is doing? Seems like the wheels are completely coming off. He can't even get a Ticketstock song made this year.

pk said...

That segment about the Internet IBJ coverage of the game WAS pretty funny. TC brings nothing in it, but contrasted to Jake's over-the-topness, it worked.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"The 11:50 mix on saturdays is always one of the funniest segments of the entire broadcast week."

Yup. But that's between four guys who've "got something." The Sunday shows... not so much.

slinky said...

I'm laughing my ass off at anon 10:17pm! If you have to go back, and can remember that exact time for "radio gold" I'd say it's probably few and far between! I can't believe I'm sayin it, but I'm pretty much out on the little ticket these days. Not available to listen to Musers and can't stand Corby "the empty listen" Davidson!

slinky said...

I do try to catch The Top 10. I like it that he plays the funny Muser's bit first, then I can bail out!

darkiguana said...

This just hit my twitter account;


1310 The Ticket ‏@dfwticket 1m1 minute ago

George Dunham is retiring. Details next on The Musers.

Hold on to your butts.....

Anonymous said...

Fascinated that Gordo was not involved in the American Sniper segment... My theory: They knew that it would have been a fight... And not the kind you could joke about on BaD Radio in a couple days... Would have loved to have been a fly on the wall during show prep.

Anonymous said...

Can't believe I'm saying this, but for the first time ever I'll acknowledge that unless Cat makes some major changes, things could go south quickly for our beloved little ticket. I use to have fun with people like Ben and Skin and that Cavanaugh guy on twitter that no one was listening. Not sure if thats true anymore based on what I read. I wholly agree with the comments of them needing to bring back events like the compound or campout, because Oxnard/Rangers/Stars road trips just dont compare. Some of my best Ticket "listening" is when I've gone on long road trips, and just played an entire campout or parts of compounds from the unticket. Personnel wise, I dont see a ton of optimism for the future. I like Sirois, Sea Bass has completely changed (hard to blame him with what he went through), Jake is ok when he turns down the smug, TC is dreadful (the easiest call for Cat to make), and I think Mino has a ton of potential.

Sad to say, but this P1 has already started to listen less, especially mid days. C'mon Cat, what's it going to take for you to be proactive?

Anonymous said...

Nothing having to do with IJB is interesting.

The great VJ Boyd has struck again. New character in last night's premier of Justified included a new character named Ty Walker. He is brilliant.

Anonymous said...

I thought that perhaps darkiguana was goofing around, but I went to the official Ticket Twitter page and found this:

1310 The Ticket @dfwticket · 5h 5 hours ago
George Dunham is retiring. Details next on The Musers.

So, uh, WHAT? Did anyone hear this on-air? Why isn't this site and every other Ticket related interweb gizmo going absolutely ape s??????

Anonymous said...

No butt holding, folks. Georgio is retiring from UNT football/basketball play-by-play, not The Ticket. He says he hopes to be at The Ticket for years and years to come.

All is well.

Ragonk Dykes said...

@8:52 I noticed that too. I assumed it was bc Gordo would just want to talk about rifle specs and other gun nerd stuff. With his gun fetish, I seriously doubt Gordois with Michael Moore on this.

@9:06 "C'mon Cat, what's it going to take for you to be proactive?"

A significant ratings drop. As long as they're still #1 they'd be crazy to do something drastic.

The only show underperforming right now is Norm. You think they want to get rid of Norm? No way. He gives them sports cred and he's the soul of the station. Plus he provides so many drops... can you imagine the station without him?

BaD just re-upped. They're going nowhere. Hardline has The Godfather, so nothing is changing there. Musers are a ratings juggernaut still.

So what could they possibly change without killing their ratings and giving another station a talent upgrade?

@9:26 TY WALKAAA CHICKEN!!!!

The Plainsman said...

George is retiring as voice of the Mean Green (North Texas Football). That's all. Just a tease.

I'm mulling over a George column that I hope to have up in a few days. One more in the meantime.

Charles Golden said...

@Ragonk Dykes - I can absolutely imagine the station without Norm. He's the first show I'd get rid of. Course I'd also replace him with either IJB or the ShakeJoint so I know I'm squarely in the minority on this one.

And just so this entire site isn't totally anti-TC and Jake, I actually listen to BaD radio more because I really enjoy the mix with those two and Bob/Dan. I feel like because they're younger guys with less distractions (kids etc), they're watching and researching more sports than just about every other host (with the exception of Bob of course).

Colorado P1 said...

I'm not a regular Intentional Grounding listener but I just heard the tease for tonight's guests: Doocy and Dwaine Caraway. That's must-listen radio in my book.

I see that on the stream, Costner has been replaced by Norm talking from a bathroom about donating his car to Texans Can. It's a good cause, but man what a beating to hear it every single time I press play on TuneIn

Anonymous said...

TC's increasing presence on BaD Radio is killing me. Dude adds zero to the show. I've tried giving him a chance but I can't take it anymore. I'm finding myself looking for other things to listen to during segments I know he'll be a part of.

A Potamus said...

Colorado P1, I about died laughing at your 2nd paragraph. Spot on.

debased said...

1:59 - I'm right there with ya. Too much TC on BaDD. Sometimes it seems like I hear more of him than Donovan, which is unfortunate. I find myself tuning out more as well. What a beating.

Anonymous said...

@Charles Golden
"I can absolutely imagine the station without Norm. He's the first show I'd get rid of. Course I'd also replace him with either IJB or the ShakeJoint so I know I'm squarely in the minority on this one."

Yeah, at least you acknowledge you're in the minority here.

@1:59
"TC's increasing presence on BaD Radio is killing me. Dude adds zero to the show. I've tried giving him a chance but I can't take it anymore. I'm finding myself looking for other things to listen to during segments I know he'll be a part of. "

Right there with you. And bear in mind, BaD is my favorite program. I just can't stand the guy. For a while he was not butting in regularly and I just avoided his ticker disasters, but he's back to his butting ways. And he never. contributes. anything. Not insight. Not humor. Just bland opinion in a grating muppet voice.

I know it's hysterical to say this, but the guy is ruining The Ticket for me.

Shaggy said...

Interesting contrast between the Musers' reverential discussion of American Sniper and The Hardline's, where they pulled no punches discussing the veracity (and lack thereof) of many of the stories in the film (yes, FILM) and book.

Anonymous said...

That's OK slinky - 1017 here laughing my ass off at your counter comment: I was trying to show that as recent as a few months ago there was an all time great moment involving humor, chemistry, camaraderie etc. which people like you that for whatever reason, perhaps you are now old and have moved on, don't appreciate anymore. Yet people like you refer so glowingly to nebulous memories of yesteryear but don't offer any more specificity on why the "ole days" were so much more brilliant.

Anonymous said...

I'm out on Norm and BADD now because of TC. He's gotta go. Sucks because now I actually have to focus on work between 10 and 3!

deezy said...

I'm really beginning to think that some of you caught TC in bed with your wives. I'm not the guy's biggest fan myself, but dang.

Colorado P1 - someone needs to tell Norm that the tagline for Dallas CAN! is "Write off the car, not the KID" (singular). Plenty of laziness to go around in THAT mistake, methinks.

Brad Gilbert said...

@shaggy. How much of the Hardlines treatment of the movie do you think was clouded by Greggo's twitter comments about Chris Kyle during the funeral procession?

Anonymous said...

408:

Pre saying no offense as I pre say and now actually say what I intend to say....You are not a very good reader if you think any of the comments are claiming how amazing the old days were. They're merely articulating how the station was constructed and what the ground conditions were like at that time that allowed for it to happen.

Out of curiosity. When did you begin listening?

pk said...

I tuned in right in the middle of Jub's announcement. Craig was talking about the morning hours and how tough that can be. Thought that was George's adios for a minute.

Anonymous said...

Not a peep from Gordon during Troy Aikman's segment. But the ratings were probably pretty good.

Shaggy said...

Brad:

No idea--I'm not really aware of anything Greggo has done/said in the last 3-4 years.

Plan B said...

Less Sean. Sure, he's alright with tickers but as far as conversation dude has been bringing big bag of nothing lately. But, he does have a great bit on TSJ as Interrupting Guy..

gunther said...

Yep, Troy was truly pissed off last week. No more Gettin Real with Troy. Damn.

East Texas P1 said...

There was no "Getting Real with Troy" segment today. In fact, Gordon didn't even make a comment during the whole segment.

Coincidence maybe? Or warned off by Cat, possibly?

Anonymous said...

Troy Aikman is great. He was a Hall of Fame QB. He's the best play by play man going. He doesn't pull any punches in his show with Musers. Really enjoyed his honesty about the Patriots legacy and their miserable human being coach Belicheat.

Think it's pretty clear he was not happy with Gordo last week and that wasn't a bit. Love it when a class act like Troy puts Gordo in his place.

Anonymous said...

Guess Troy wasn't kidding around last week. Today's show was all business, not a whiff of lightheartedness, of friendliness or even familiarity, and not a peep from Gordo. Not even a parting goofy comment the second Troy hung up from
Gordon. I get the feeling Troy will not be back next season.

The Plainsman said...

I was only able to half-listen to Troy this morning but -- was Junior on that call at all? I only recall George as asking any questions.

Anonymous said...

Re: Sports Talk ratings/decline
Sports Talk listening is at an all time high. Just do some quick research and you'll find plenty of evidence. Why do you think so many companies are investing in the properties and networks?
The Fan's clock is not run counter to the ticket's commercials...the ticket is just really bad at clock management
The Rangers helped ESPN's ratings big time, and you can look that up too, even when they sucked. mlb and nfl are the big radio sports even when teams are bad.

Anonymous said...

Nothing wrong with Sean Bass. He's a GMF. His tickers are good. He's great on diamond talk. Great when he talks baseball. Feel bad that he has to be paired with a spare like Jake on Sunday morning. Sean deserves better.

Anonymous said...

Junior asked about the deflated ball topic and I'm pretty certain bought up the 94 NFC Championship game.

BuffaloPrinter said...

@Plainsman - Junior opened the questioning about Deflate-gate. Troy's response was long (and informative). But he was there.

Since NBC has the Super Bowl, I wonder if next week's Troy call will feature an in-person conversation. The webcam may give us clues, but I imagine Troy isn't treating Gordo like another Skip Bayless. He just wasn't a fan of the Joe Buck question.

Anonymous said...

I'd love to get a count of how many times TC says "uh" in one day.

Professional broadcasting at it's, uh, best.

Anonymous said...

Jerry Jones has been the owner of the Dallas Cowboys since 1989 and I still have NO idea what he's talking about. He's a crazy ride when there is a microphone in his face.

Anonymous said...

If I hear Corby bring up Boyhood one more f'ing time, I'm going to lose my mind.

We get it, it's a good movie.

DRW1961 said...

In the past whenever Fox didn't have the Super Bowl, Troy said that he would be onsite for some Super Bowl functions but wouldn't actually be at the game. I'm guessing that he will probably call in from his hotel unless his obligations happen to take him close to radio row.

In light of the Troy thing, I wonder if Gordon will be a little more subdued in his antics this year. Skating on thin ice so to speak....

Anonymous said...

Why is eveyone so interested in Gordon being "put in his place" or "toning it down?" He's the only thing that gives that show any life, and he's already turned down from 11 to about 6 in the last five years.

Anonymous said...

Two things:

1) So Mike has decided to jump onto the global warming bandwagon. And for someone who claims to hate politics, Corby sure isn't shy about wading into those waters when the mood strikes him. That probably caused a few radio buttons to be pushed.

2) Given the recent discussions here on MTC, there should be some excellent reading-between-the-lines tonight during GNO roundtables.

Anonymous said...

Jumped on the global warming bandwagon? I'm guessing we're dealing with a climate change denier here. There are actually people that believe in science that like to listen to The Ticket. You don't have to be a knuckle dragger to enjoy HSO's. Doubt that has anything to do with lower ratings.

Gopher said...

Waiting for the next round of Gordon vs Nasty Nester this week.
Gordon should have gone ahead with the assault charge last year.
I'm sure they are one more incident away from the NFL pulling both stations credentials. Just think of the fun 103.3 and The Fan could have with that.

Anonymous said...

Is Norm doing CAN ads from the crapper?

pk said...

Anon 3:48 - bold statement. Gordo's Corner and Muse in the News is beyond predictable - very stale. His impersonations, characters and bits with George are still great though.

Rhinosaur said...

Ticket rant inbound.

1) I've never heard anyone with a bigger bag on The Ticket than TC. Sweet Lord, I know from the car I sometimes get delusional that I can be on The Ticket in some capacity. The only reason I like TC is because he makes that thought not so crazy. Dead weight.

2) I can't believe this is being typed by me right now, but I had more respect for Greggo than I do Corby. I just do not get the Corby allure at all. Even if he does have something, he's not host material. He speaks in nothing but hyperbole, delivers E-News without reading most of the stories before he goes on air, and he says nothing remotely interesting about sports.

3) Station's biggest problem is complacency. Everyone's got their big contracts, no need in rocking the boat. The Musers and the Hardline really don't put any work into their shows. They talk about the topics of the day, Gordo delivers one bit...that's about it. Hardline used to deliver a bit every day, or at least a few a week. Say what you want about BaDD Radio, but they sound like the only show that puts time/production value into their show.

4) Getting rid of ticker teases doesn't really upset me, but we all know why that's happening. Just add even more commercial time, giving me more time hearing if the Fail or ESPN has anything on. On my trips down the dial, I have this to say about the competition: The Musers have nothing to worry about...the opposing morning shows are either unlistenable (Fail) or national (ESPN). Not so sure about the other shows.

5) I know campouts and compound depend on sponsors, but Christ, listening to all the people giving The Ticket ad money, I think the reason behind this is either A) Poor sales/management, or B) Complete disinterest by hosts.

6) Rhyner does not give a shit anymore. Recent kick in the ass or no, you can just hear his disinterest. Norm cares. Norm still works hard. He's not my cup of tea and he's a good punchline, but at least he brings something. Rhyner does NOTHING. Couple that with "I shoudn't be here" Corby and Danny...doesn't make for must-listen radio.

7) Changes need to be made. I'm not smart, so I don't know the changes, but some of the areas of need are glaringly obvious. I don't mind the Cash boys and Jake and Bass. Ratings be damned, time to start experimenting.