The Sports Hub and WEEI finished 1-2 in the summer Nielsen Audio ratings in their most desired demographic, while WEEI’s “Kirk and Callahan” show beat out the Sports Hub’s “Toucher and Rich” program in the always competitive morning drive part.
The Sports Hub (98.5 FM) earned an 8.4 share overall in the men ages 25-54 demographic from the period of June 21-Sept. 12 to take first. WEEI (93.7 FM) was second with a 7.2 share.
In the spring, WEEI also had a 7.2 share to finish second while the Sports Hub earned a 10.6.
WVEI, the Providence-based station of parent company Entercom Communications that carries WEEI’s programming, earned an additional 0.4 share in the Boston market.
“Kirk and Callahan” took morning drive (6-10 a.m.) with an 8.9 (9.1 with WVEI’s 0.2 included). “Toucher and Rich” was second (8.4).
“Kirk and Callahan’s” victory is significant given that cohost Kirk Minihane was absent for many of the summer programs. He went on indefinite leave in early September after detailing his battle with depression.
In afternoon drive (2-6 p.m.), the Sports Hub’s “Felger and Massarotti” finished first with 13.3 share. WEEI was second with a 6.5 in the window, with its “Dale and Keefe’’ show switching from afternoon drive to middays on Aug. 13. The “OMF” show, featuring Glenn Ordway, Lou Merloni, and Christian Fauria, was moved to afternoon drive. Specifics on how each show fared in the two time slots were not made available.
In middays, WEEI’s programming, which for the first two months of the period was the “OMF” show, was second (8.8, 9.4 with WVEI’s 0.6). The Sports Hub’s program featuring Scott Zolak and Marc Bertrand was third (7.5). WZLX’s Carter Alan show was first (9.3), though WEEI vaults to the top spot with the WVEI share.
In the 6-7 p.m. window, the Sports Hub, which usually airs “The Baseball Reporters’’ hosted by Tony Massarotti in that slot, took first (10.8). WEEI, which typically features the Red Sox pregame show in that period, finished fourth (5.0, 0.1 for WVEI).
In the 7 p.m.-midnight period, WEEI, which has Red Sox broadcasts in that window and the “Mut at Night” show when there is no game, finished first (9.5, 0.3 for WVEI). The Sports Hub, which airs “The Adam Jones Show,’’ was second (6.1).
As for the usual disclaimer: It should be noted that Nielsen advises that the WVEI share should not be added to the WEEI share, even though it is true that WVEI comes in better in the Boston market in some areas than does WEEI, such as the South Coast.
The reason, per Nielsen, is that the purpose of the ratings is to reflect the same content and advertising load at a specific station or program. The advertising content on WEEI and WVEI is different — Entercom made the decision to sell the stations separately — and thus any share from WVEI should count separately.