Patrick Beverley has announced himself as the next star of sports broadcasting

After 22 years in radio, Adam “The Bull” Gerstenhaber was ready for a new adventure. Indeed, the former co-host of bull and fox on 92.3 The Fan in Cleveland had no new job scheduled when he left his radio home of 11 years last month.

“I was already leaving without having a new project,” Gerstenhaber admitted in a recent phone interview with BSM. “I left before I knew for sure that I had a ‘next project’.”

Gerstenhaber was preparing for his final show with co-host Dustin Fox on April 1st when he was contacted by an executive producer at TEGNA, a company that was developing a Cleveland sports TV show on YouTube. The executive producer, who had just found out that Bull was a free agent, made it clear that he wanted Bull to be part of the new project.

Everything happened very quickly.

“Let’s talk Monday,” Gerstenhaber told the executive producer. “And within a week they signed me up.”

Cleveland’s ultimate sports spectacle on YouTube featuring Gerstenhaber, former ESPN personality Jay Crawford, 92.3 The Fan’s Garrett Bush and rotating hosts to make up a four-person panel, debuted last Monday. The show, which airs weekdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., features heated discussions about Cleveland sports, guests live, in the studio or via Zoom, as well as audience interactions via social media.

“I’m very excited,” Gerstenhaber said. “It’s a definite adjustment for me after 22 years in radio and television. For the past 11 years I’ve done a radio show with only one other host and I was the main guy who talked the most and now I’m on a show with three other people and it’s such a fit. So far I’m having fun.

And so far, the reaction to the show has been overwhelmingly positive.

A big reason for that is that it’s something that Cleveland didn’t have and really never had, unlike a city like New York, where there are local radio shows that are simulcast on the sports channels regional.

“There’s nothing like it in Cleveland,” Gerstenhaber said. “And there was certainly nothing like it with a sign. Cleveland is such a massive sports town and now people who don’t live in Cleveland and maybe retired to Florida or Arizona now have a show television they can watch centered on Cleveland.

The new venture certainly represents a big change from what Bull has been accustomed to in his radio career. He enjoys the freedom of not having to follow a hard clock for this show. In fact, there have already been occasions when the show was able to last a little longer than expected because they have the option to do so on YouTube.

Doing a YouTube show gives the panel a great opportunity to dig deeper into topics and spend quality time with guests. And while there’s no curse in the show at the moment, there could be potential for it later.

Don’t expect the show to become X-rated or anything like that, but the goal is to be able to capture the spirit and emotion of being a sports fan and host.

“That’s something we could do in the future,” Gerstenhaber said. “Not cursing just to curse, but it gives us the possibility if we get fired up. It is allowed because there are no restrictions there. The company does not want us to do this at this time.

There was also the change for Gerstenhaber from being the “ringleader” on his old radio show, leading the conversation and doing most of the talking, to now stepping back and having Crawford handing out the ball on the TV show. .

For a guy called “The Bull”, it will take some getting used to.

“Jay is a pro of the pros,” Gerstenhaber said. “He’s the ringleader for that, but he’s also part of the conversation. I’m not used to not being the leader so I have to adapt to that. I think it went pretty well and the chemistry is pretty good and over time we’ll get used to the rhythm.

Gerstenhaber’s move from sports radio to an Internet TV show is a perfect example of the evolution of the industry. A good portion of listeners and viewers these days, especially younger ones, do not necessarily watch traditional television or listen to terrestrial radio. For many sports fans, watching and listening on a mobile device or computer has become a very important way of life.

The desire to adapt, as well as a shorter working day, appealed to him very much.

“It’s only more recently that I thought to myself why do I only have to be a radio guy?” Gerstenhaber wondered. “There were things about my job that made me unhappy. I was doing a five hour radio show. It is too long. It’s crazy. No one should do a five hour radio show at this point.

Internet streaming has arrived, and it’s no longer just a few sports fans making a show from their garage. The company has evolved to the point where technology has provided more opportunities for those who have already found success in the industry and are looking for new challenges.

A bit like Adam The Bull!

“I think years ago, probably like a lot of people in the radio business, we looked at the internet and podcasts as rubbish…these guys aren’t professionals…they’re amateurs” , said Gerstenhaber. “But the game has changed.”

Gerstenhaber, Crawford and everyone associated with the “Ultimate Cleveland Sports Show” shouldn’t have much trouble attracting young audiences. This demographic is already used to watching shows on YouTube and other streaming platforms. The challenge now is to get the more mature audience on board. There are definitely obstacles there.

I know this from experience trying to explain to my mother in Florida how she can hear me on the radio and watch me on TV just by using her tablet.

Bull can certainly understand that.

“My mom is still trying to figure out how to watch the show live,” Gerstenhaber said with a chuckle. “Older fans struggle with that. A lot of my older fans here in Cleveland are wondering how do I watch it? For people under 40 and certainly those under 30, watching a YouTube show is like watching everything on my phone or device. It’s such a big gap and obviously over the years that group will grow.

With the ongoing TV show, Gerstenhaber still has a passion for his roots and that’s the radio side of the business. In the coming weeks, “The Bull” is expected to announce the launch of two podcasts, a daily and a weekly, which will debut next month. But he also didn’t rule out the possibility of returning to terrestrial radio at some point.

“I didn’t close the door on the radio,” Gerstenhaber said. “I still love radio. I would always consider, under the right circumstances, going back to radio, but it really would have to be the perfect situation. I’m excited about (the TV show) and at the moment , I don’t want to do anything else, but I will definitely stay open to radio if a great opportunity arises.

The landscape of the broadcasting industry, particularly as it relates to sports, has certainly changed over the years and continues to evolve. Adam Gerstenhaber has certainly had huge success on the radio side, in New York and Cleveland, but now he’s transitioned into something new with the YouTube TV show and he’s committed to making it a hit.

About Selena J. Killeen

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