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'Sports Hub' tops in summer ratings book

Posted by Chad Finn, Globe Staff  October 4, 2011 03:35 PM

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There were nothing but good vibes this summer for 98.5 The Sports Hub, which won its second straight Arbitron quarterly ratings period according to data available today.

The Sports Hub finished first in the crucial men 25-54 demographic with a 7.5 share, edging classic rock station WZLX (7.2). The station's programs finished first in morning drive, middays, and afternoon drive.

WEEI (850-AM) was tied for eighth with hip-hop station Jam'n 94.5 with a 4.6 share.

It should be noted that WEEI began simulcasting on 93.7 FM on Sept. 12, or the final three days of the book, which covers the period from June 23-Sept. 14. But all numbers in the summer quarterly apply to the previous station at that spot in the dial -- the now-defunct WMMK, known to listeners as Mike FM.

The simulcast began being counted on September 14, the first day of the October monthly. WEEI program director Wolfe said in an e-mail that Arbitron had a specific process that we needed to follow in order set it up once the simulcast was announced.

Overall, WMMK was tied for 11th in the period with a 4.3 share.

With WEEI strongly emphasizing its FM signal, the share from 93.7 for those three days might have given the station's overall numbers a small boost had they counted toward their share. WEEI also includes the Boston share for its Providence-based FM station in its ratings.

Among the specific day parts, The Sports Hub's Toucher and Rich program was first in morning drive with a 10.3 share. WEEI's Dennis and Callahan program was fifth (5.8), but again, that's based solely on AM numbers alone.

In afternoon drive (2-6 p.m.), The Sports Hub's Felger and Massarotti were first (9.3), while the WEEI's Big Show was seventh (4.9).

In middays (10 a.m.-noon), Gresh and Zo took the top spot for The Sports Hub (9.5), while WEEI's Mut and Merloni program was 13th (3.1).

In the 7 p.m.-midnight window, WEEI (850) was third (7.2), while The Sports Hub was 11th (3.6).

It is the second straight quarterly ratings period won by The Sports Hub, and the third since it launched in August 2009.

Bolstered in part by the Bruins' run to the Stanley Cup -- 98.5 is the team's flagship station -- it earned an 8.8 share in the spring book, finishing first in the men 25-54 demo.

WEEI (850) was tied for sixth in the spring (5.1), though they were fourth (5.6) with the share in the Boston market for its Providence-based FM station included.

About Touching All The Bases

Irreverence and insight from Chad Finn, a Globe/Boston.com sports writer and media columnist. A winner of several national and regional writing awards, he is the founder and sole contributor to the TATB blog, which launched in December 2004. Yes, he realizes how lucky he is.

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