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Sid Rosenberg, the Sultan of Sports Radio

by dsnyder (writer), Ft.Lauderdale, July 09, 2007

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His voice reeks of Brooklyn.

His mid-afternoon radio show has been moving seamlessly in and out of topics such as the Sopranos, the host’s greatness, and the Marlins, the home team, not being on par with his Mets.

He tells his audience that Jason Stark, who like all of his guests is not only “great” but also “his great friend”, will be on during the next segment. Then he lets a belch flow into the microphone, and curses the Diet Coke that created the gaseous expulsion.

All of this is what makes Sid Rosenberg the sultan of sports radio. He, one of its greatest talents, and his show one of its best.

Rosenberg once was a power player on the Imus in the Morning show, and a mainstay on the uber- sports station WFAN, in New York. That is at least until, by his admission, he screwed it up. He is now a part of the WAXY Miami, 790 the ticket’s lineup, which has taken over sports radio in South Florida. The station, like Sid, has turned its back on the old concepts of sports radio and has forced it to evolve into something else, something entertaining.

Sid rose quickly through the ranks of the radio industry. He got his start in South Florida, with CBS Sportsline. Within two years, he was hosting shows on WFAN. His stardom came from his raw talent, and his uncanny ability to develop a quality interview, no matter the interviewee, no matter the topic. He has never taken a broadcasting class. He has never cared what people thought of him personally, just that they notice the talent.

Rosenberg understands his audience. Most sports stations are trying to lasso a demographic of 18- 35 year old males. This age group grew up with cable, ESPN, and the new school of sports journalism. They do not want to listen to three hours of stats and regurgitated newspaper fodder. 790’s South Florida competitor, 560 WQAM, is an example of the old school of sports radio. The programming there is dead, decomposing, and holding onto a fan base by the fibers that hold together radio giant Neil Rogers’ contract.

When I first stumbled upon “the ticket” a year ago I listened to his show because he was teamed with O.J. McDuffie, and since I am a die hard homer I will even let my reverential treatment of Fins players sway my listening choices. Sid, to put it lightly, rubbed me the wrong way.

“Just what South Florida needs is another know-it-all New Yorker,” I thought listening to him praise his precious Giants, Mets, and Rangers. Cringing as he called South Beach a, “pimple on New York’s ass.”

Then he began to man the show alone, and I realized that he is hands down one of the most entertaining radio personalities I have ever come across. His stupidity became revealed as shtick. His insensitivity and homerism, as little more than fuel for his callers’ fire.

Sid Rosenberg has the ability to do what few do on sports radio, engage an audience.

He, and not the content he presents, carries his shows. He does not stay on the beaten path of sports talk, and that is why he has given Rogers, whom has had a show opposite of his in their time slot, a run for his money in the ratings.

His topics can bounce from sex to tennis. His guests could be anyone from Steven Van Zant to Peter King. It is the lack of monotony that makes Sid’s show stand-out; it is how he addresses the varying topics that make him great.

Now he is moving to the mornings. He signed a four year deal to host a 5:30-9 morning show that will eventually run as a competitor to 790’s current daytime man, Joe Rose, as he jumps ship over to the competing 560. Rosenberg will man a solo, three and a half hour show, that very few seasoned veterans in the radio business could handle; one more indicator of just how good he is.

You can catch his new morning show starting July 9th at 5:30, streaming live at 790theticket.com.

When you tune in keep this in mind, Sid is like mold. At first you may think he stinks, but then he just grows on you.

David Snyder catches issues floating around sports at bigdaveonsports.com


About the Writer

dsnyder is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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