The battle between ESPN 980 and 106.7 The Fan took to the college turf this spring, with the two sports stations swapping college properties. Virginia Tech had already moved from 980 to The Fan, and Thursday morning Maryland and 980 announced that the Terps' new radio home will be on 980.
"It's great to be back where we belong, on ESPN 980," Maryland play-by-play voice Johnny Holliday said Thursday afternoon after the announcement. "It's a terrific partnership....The fan base you guys have, the great signal you guys have, Terrapin fans will be able to hear football and basketball and even some lacrosse and women's basketball all over the area. It's just a terrific, terrific move, and I'm very excited about it."
Not to choose sides here, but just about every time I wound up on 980 and Virginia Tech athletics were on the air, I kept it moving. Sorry, just not that interested. Terps, though, I'll tune in for.
"You talk college sports in the D.C. area, you have a lot of great schools, no question," 980's Al Galdi said. "But number 1 in terms of popularity, in terms of alumni base, unquestionably is Maryland."
Maryland's release described it as a "multi-year agreement," and said Terps games will appear "almost exclusively" on 980.
In the infrequent event of broadcast conflicts with the Redskins, Maryland Athletics and ESPN980 will aggressively promote alternate stations where the Terps will be heard in the D.C. listening area. In the first year of the new partnership, due to Red Zebra's existing broadcast contracts, there may be a limited number of additional programming conflicts during the 2010-11 men's basketball season. Maryland Athletics and ESPN980 will promote where fans can hear the Terps in the event of additional men's basketball conflicts in this transitional year as well.
Meantime, the promo announcing the Maryland move bragged that 980 is "the station that has the most sports in Washington." Not sure how to quantify that one, unless Mike & Mike counts as a sport.