ESPN Audio has the Fantasy Football fan covered this fall with podcasts, shows and even pre-season events for fans.
Fantasy Focus Podcast Relaunches with New Co-Host Field Yates
Matthew Berry, Stephania Bell Return for Ninth Season of Award-Winning Podcast
ESPN’s Fantasy Focus podcast has relaunched this week with Field Yates as the new co-host with Matthew Berry. Stephania Bell continues her role as a contributor to the podcast, which is executed daily through the NFL regular season. In eight seasons, Fantasy Focus has won seven Podcast Awards, including last year’s best sports podcast. Fantasy Focus has also garnered almost 30 million downloads, which is second all-time among ESPN Podcasts.
“I’ve been able to be a part of ESPN’s fantasy football coverage over each of the past two seasons, but I view this role as an opportunity to have a focused voice on a daily basis, something that will allow me to dig deeper and engage the listeners with expanded thoughts,” said Yates. “It’s an exciting chance to extend my opinions and outlooks for players each week and also brings fans inside how I assess fantasy forecasts – a mash-up of my scouting background from working in the NFL and statistical metrics.”
Yates is looking forward to teaming up with Fantasy Focus co-host Matthew Berry. “Working with Matthew – a friend and someone whose opinion I value as much as any other in the fantasy community – is something I’m relishing,” said Yates. “I believe that we have a dynamic that fans will be receptive to and enjoy as we roll into the 2015 season. The chance to size up players we see differently and learn from each other is something to be excited about. I know Matthew will make the transition for me a smooth one.”
Berry added, “Field is both a friend and someone who knows a ton about both football and fantasy football so I’m really excited to have him join the team and take the ‘06010’ to the next level. This is going to be a great year.”
Listeners should expect more of an emphasis on daily fantasy sports during Fantasy Focus this season. “NFL fans that haven’t already engaged in daily fantasy football will likely do so soon – it’s another way to make Sundays even more enjoyable,” said Yates. “I’d imagine that there will be a steadier diet of conversation tailored to the daily audience, particularly as the season progresses and bye weeks, injuries, performance, weather and other factors become more pertinent. From a podcast objective standpoint, my firm belief is that the Fantasy Focus will aim to provide an informative, engaging and entertaining perspective. Matthew and Nate [Ravitz] have done exactly that during the podcast’s lifetime, and I’m looking forward to continuing to do so.”
More Fantasy Football from ESPN Audio
ESPN Audio will once again bring fans original programming and content dedicated to fantasy football throughout the season:
- ESPN DFS Podcast – Also hosted by Anita Marks, this new weekly podcast will feature ESPN experts and guests. The show will examine the broader DFS landscape, focusing on advice, news, trends and profiles.
- The ESPN Daily Fantasy Podcast Channel – Launching this September, the channel will be home to the weekly DFS podcast as well as short-form vignettes by ESPN’s Daily Fantasy experts and will be focused on lineup advice for that day’s DFS action on DraftKings.
- 10th Annual Fantasy Draft Convention and Championship – ESPN Chicago will host the event at UIC Forum in Chicago on Saturday, August 22, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. CT, with ESPN NFL and Fantasy Football analysts onsite, hosted by Stephania Bell, John Clayton and Eric Karabell, with ESPN Chicago 1000 voices.
- Inaugural ESPN New York Fantasy Football Convention – On Saturday, August 29, ESPN New York will host the inaugural ESPN 98.7 Fantasy Football Convention at Empire City Casino in Yonkers, N.Y., from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. ESPN NFL and Fantasy Football analysts at the event will include Adam Schefter, Matthew Berry, Stephania Bell, Ken Daube, Damien Woody, Ray Lucas, Anita Marks, and Ryan Ruocco, as well as ESPN New York 98.7FM hosts and analysts.
- ESPN Radio– Throughout the season, ESPN Radio will devote attention to fantasy football in popular programs like the daily Mike & Mike simulcast on ESPN2.
About ESPN Radio
ESPN Radio, the country’s largest sports radio network, ESPN Deportes Radio,ESPNRadio.com, and ESPN Podcasts comprise ESPN Audio.
ESPN Radio, which launched January 1, 1992, provides more than 9,000 hours of talk and event content annually, reaching 20 million listeners a week on 500 nationwide stations, including more than 375 full-time affiliates and clearance in the top 25 markets. ESPN owns and/or operates stations in New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. ESPN Radio programming is also available on SiriusXM and via digital distributors iTunes Radio, Slacker Radio and TuneIn.
ESPN Audio listeners logged more than 7.8 billion streaming minutes in 2014 and 194 million session starts, with an average time spent listening of more than 40 minutes. ESPN Audio launched its first podcast in 2005, and in 2014 ESPN Audio podcasts were downloaded 302 million times, an increase of 51 percent compared to the previous year.