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WNSR Sports Stories Archives for 2023-06

TSU & WNSR establish broadcast partnership











[Nashville, TN, June 30th 2023 ] — Tennessee State University and Nashville Sports Radio WNSR are pleased to announce a significant three-year partnership aimed at enriching the gameday experience for Tiger fans and expanding the coverage of TSU football and basketball throughout the Nashville region.


Under this innovative collaboration, WNSR Radio Nashville, renowned for its local sports coverage, will serve as the official radio broadcast partner for TSU Football and basketball. This multi-year agreement grants WNSR exclusive rights to provide live play-by-play coverage of all TSU football and basketball games, including regular season matches and postseason appearances. This partnership signifies a major milestone for both institutions, combining the rich traditions of TSU with WNSR's dedication to delivering comprehensive sports coverage.


WNSR's flagship network, 560 AM, 95.9 FM (Nashville), 107.9 FM (Smyrna), and, will broadcast all TSU football and men's basketball games, allowing fans to stay connected with their beloved Tigers regardless of their location. Additionally, WNSR will offer in-depth pregame and postgame analysis, exclusive interviews with coaches and players, and behind-the-scenes content to engage fans on a deeper level.


"We are thrilled to return to WNSR, one of the founding stations for TSU Athletics," expressed Dr. Mikki Allen, Director of Athletics at TSU. "The profound significance that WNSR will bring to our football and basketball games will undoubtedly be cherished by our devoted fans."


The inaugural broadcast of this partnership will take place during the highly anticipated season-opening football game at Notre Dame on Saturday, Sept. 2.


“Voice of the Tigers" Greg Pogue will handle play-by-play duties for both football and men's basketball, with former Tennessee Titan Chris Sanders joining him in the football booth. Veteran broadcaster Albert Dawson returns to the WNSR airwaves and teams up with Pogue for the men's basketball broadcasts. Adam Johnson, WNSR operations manager, will serve as executive producer for all TSU broadcasts.


"This collaboration with TSU perfectly aligns with our mission to provide Nashville sports fans with top-quality coverage," said Johnson. "We are committed to showcasing the exceptional talent and dedication of TSU athletes, and we are honored to become the radio home for Tiger football. Through this partnership, we aim to elevate the game day experience for all TSU fans and foster a deeper connection between the radio station and the North Nashville community."


In addition to game day broadcasts, WNSR Radio Nashville will collaborate with TSU Football on community outreach initiatives, special events, and promotional activities. This partnership extends beyond the radio airwaves, allowing both organizations to support the local community and further promote the pride and spirit of TSU.


The TSU and WNSR partnership promises an exciting future for the Tiger faithful, as it brings together the passion of TSU's loyal fans with the expertise and reach of WNSR's sports coverage. Together, they will create an immersive experience that celebrates the triumphs and achievements of TSU Athletics while strengthening the bonds within the Nashville community.


WNSR is dedicated to delivering comprehensive sports coverage to the Nashville community. With an experienced and passionate team of sports broadcasters, WNSR provides in-depth analysis, engaging discussions, and live coverage of local and national sporting events.


As part of the agreement, WNSR will feature dedicated coaches' shows, highlighting football head coach Eddie George and men's basketball head coach Penny Collins, offering fans an inside look at the players, coaches, and game strategies. These programs will provide exclusive access and insights into the world of TSU Football, further strengthening the team and its passionate supporters.


WNSR can also be streamed on mobile devices using the TSU Tigers app and through Alexa smart speakers.


For more information about TSU Athletics and WNSR Radio Nashville, please visit and


About Tennessee State University Athletics:

Tennessee State University has a rich tradition in athletics, with achievements ranging from international success in track and field to 11 Black College Football National Championships. Legendary Track and Field Coach Ed Temple coached 40 student-athletes who competed in the Olympics, including Wilma Rudolph, the first American woman to win three gold medals in a single Olympiad. From 1946-1982, TSU's football program posted a remarkable 101-8-2 record and won 11 Black College Football National Championships. Currently, over 250 student-athletes compete for the Tigers in seven men's and eight women's sports in the Ohio Valley Conference, which participates in the National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division I. Visit TSU Athletics online at


About WNSR Nashville Sports Radio:

Established in the fall of 1996, WNSR became Nashville's first 24-hour sports radio station. As a CBS Sports Radio affiliate, WNSR also syndicates the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies, the MLB's Atlanta Braves, and the Jim Rome Show (11a-2p). Locally, WNSR hosts the Bill King Show (6-9a), Greg Pogue and Jon Burton Show (9-11a), and The McFarland Show (2-4p).


This morning Nick Guerriero, (TSU Assistant Athletic Director) co-hosted The Greg Pogue & News Channel 5 Jon Burton Show. Guerriero & Pogue discussed the new TSU & WNSR broadcast partnership. Also highlighting TSU's future colleigate ice hockey program, begining in the fall of 2024.  At the 59:00 mark - Dr. Mikki Allen (Director of Athletics at TSU) joined the show to promote the new partnership between TSU & WNSR. Listen here




Young Guns in Smashville

The NHL draft is complete and the Nashville Predators who hosted the event came added 11 young men to their core of prospects. The first round was highlighted with two picks: Matthew Wood a right winger who just completed his first season in Storrs, Connecticut playing for the UCONN Huskies, and Tanner Molendyk a defenseman who spent last season playing for the Saskatoon Blades in the Western Hockey League. Day saw the Preds bring in nine more prospects to the organization including seven more forwards, a goalie, and a defenseman.

            At fifteenth overall Nashville selected Matthew Wood. Wood played his hockey at the University of Connecticut where he was the youngest player in all of NCAA Division 1. Wood did not turn 18 until February 6, meaning he played about half the season at 17. Even though Wood was the youngest player in all of college hockey he still nearly put up a point per game garnering 34 points in 35 games with the Huskies. He tallied 11 goals while serving 23 assists during the 2022-2023 campaign. He was considered to be a top 20 prospect by most outlets while a top ten prospect among North American skaters. Wood never went two consecutive games without having a point during his college career, something Predators fans hope he can bring to this team in the future. He is expected to return for one more season at UCONN so he may not throw on the gold and navy blue until late 2024 or the beginning of the next season.



At pick 23 the Predators select blueliner Tanner Molendyk a defenseman playing his hockey in the WHL for Saskatoon. In his 2023-2024 season, he racked up 37 points with nine goals and 28 assists in 67 games. He is smaller than your average NHL defenseman weighing in at 181 with a height of 5-11. But he has speed on the ice which makes up for being undersized. Most consider Molendyk to be a two-way defenseman with a wicked shot. He was a projected top 10 to 15 defenseman in this year's NHL draft.

            The Predators added nine more prospects in Barry Trotz’s goal of retooling this team that missed the playoffs last year for the first time in nearly a decade. Trotz spoke recently about his vision of a parade on Broadway and he believes that this core of young talent can help bring the cup to Smashville.


2nd round picks: Kalan Lind & Felix Nilsson



Alek Kisiel / Wnsr Columnist 

@AlekKisiel on Twitter 

Tigers on Ice

On Wednesday, June 28 Tennessee State University announced that they will be adding a hockey program. This will make Tennessee State the first HBCU school to have a team hit the ice. Tennessee State announced that the team will begin play during the 2024-2025 season. The team will start as a club program, but the University has plans to expand to NCAA division-1 in the near future. They plan to have a men's team and a women's team compete. This announcement comes on the day of the NHL draft being held in Nashville.

            In a press release that was sent out Tennessee State President Glenda Glover said, “Bringing ice hockey to Tennessee State University is a part of our continued commitment to provide our students with new opportunities and to broaden new interests in areas where they have traditionally had limited or no access.” 



This announcement is an important step toward expanding diversity in a sport that has lacked diversity in its long existence. This announcement is also important for expanding college hockey in untapped markets. Tennessee States' announcement is not just grounding breaking for HBCUs but is groundbreaking for college hockey in the southern states.

            While the NHL has a foothold in the South with teams like the Carolina Hurricanes, Dallas Stars, Florida Panthers, and Nashville Predators college hockey has yet to gain traction in the Southern United States. While there are many club programs in the South there are zero Division 1 programs. The University of Alabama Huntsville did have a program, but it was discounted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Division 1 college hockey currently has 62 teams located in the Northeast and Midwestern United States with some exceptions like Arizona State. But with today's announcement that Tennessee State plans to field a Division 1 team in the future, this could mean possible expansion for other Southern schools to follow. Tennessee State is not just a leader for HBCU schools but for all Southern schools looking to maybe add ice hockey to part of their athletic department.


TSU President Glenda Glover

This announcement also confirms that Nashville is the gold standard for hockey in the South. Gary Bettman the current commissioner of the NHL led a movement to have teams in the South. It has been semi-successful for certain markets, but the Nashville experiment worked. Nashville has some of the most passionate fans in the National Hockey League and bringing a college hockey program with plans to go to Division 1 to an already established hockey market will make Nashville the hockey capital of the South.

            Tennessee States' historic announcement will forever change the landscape of college hockey. They will be a leader for other HBCU schools to expand their athletic departments to include hockey. They will also be a leader for all schools in the South that are thinking about adding a hockey program. The Tennessee State Tigers have continued to prove that the Music City is one of the best hockey markets in North America.




Alek Kisiel / WNSR Columnist 

@Alekkisiel on Twitter - Email 

The Dawgs Hunt for Three.

The 2022 Georgia Bulldogs football team completed one of the best football seasons we have ever seen. The Bulldogs compiled a 15-0 record becoming the third team in the College Football Playoff Era to do so. The 2018 Clemson Tigers and the 2019 LSU Tigers are also a part of that elite group. The Bulldogs also successfully defended their title from the previous year. The question for Bulldog fans and the rest of college football is do they have the recipe to complete the first threepeat since the Minnesota Golden Gophers in the mid-1930s?

            The main concern for Georgia heading to camp is replacing a key piece to that high-flying offense that averaged 41 points a game. Quarterback Stetson Bennett has held the keys to the Georgia offense for the last two seasons. In Bennett's last season as a Bulldog, he threw for 4100 yards, 27 touchdowns, and seven interceptions. He also completed 68 percent of his passes in his final season in Athens. With his departure to the Los Angeles Rams, the Bulldogs have a tough task finding a replacement for the two-time national champion. The two likely options for the Bulldogs this season are Junior Carson Beck and Redshirt Sophomore Blake Vandergriff. Carson Beck looks to be the front-runner after a strong spring campaign and the advantage of more game experience. Though Beck looks to be ahead in the battle it is still anyone's game once training camp gets started.

            The Bulldogs are not completely tapped out on the offensive side of the ball. Georgia’s leading receiver, tight end Brock Bowers will be back after a year where he caught 63 passes for 942 yards averaging 15 yards per reception. The first-team all-American won the Jack Mackey Award in 2022 as the nation's best tight end. Bowers is considered to be the top tight-end prospect for the 2024 NFL Draft. The teams second leading receiver Ladd McConkey will also be returning to Athens. The team's leading rusher Kenny McIntosh will be with Seattle Seahawks in 2023 after being taken in the 7th round. That does not leave the Bulldogs empty-handed in the backfield with Daijun Edwards and Kendall Milton both coming back. The two accounted for 1,361 yards on the ground. However, the Bulldogs will need to find that guy who can catch passes out of the backfield. Edwards and Milton are excellent on the ground, but they were nowhere near the pass-catching threats out of the backfield like McIntosh, so that will be something to pay attention to this upcoming season. On the defensive side of the ball, the Bulldogs lost key contributors like Jalen Carter, Kelee Ringo, and Nolan Smith who were all taken in the NFL draft. Smith and Carter were first-round picks while all three were taken by the Philadelphia Eagles. The Bulldogs will have their leading tackler Smael Mondon Jr back along with their two leaders in sacks Mykel Williams and Jamon Dumas-Johnson.

            Georgia's schedule is also favorable for them this year. Their non-conference slate contains Tennessee Martin, Ball State, UAB, and in-state rival Georgia Tech. None of those teams should be a concern for the Bulldogs this season. In conference, there does not seem to be many people standing in their way. They do have games at Auburn and Tennessee this year but escape Alabama and LSU the two top teams in the SEC West last season. The path looks clear for the Bulldogs to head back to the SEC championship game and most likely another College Football Playoff berth. 

            Winning a national championship is hard, winning two in a row is even harder, and winning three is unprecedented. It has not been done in nearly 90 years. The 2023 Georgia Bulldogs have a chance to make history. With the talent coming back and a favorable schedule do not be surprised to see Kirby Smart and his team put a third ring on their finger.


Click here to listen to Mike Griffith (AJC-DawgNation) on "The Bill King Show."




Alek Kisiel / WNSR Columnist 

Twitter: @AlekKisiel 


Omaha Bound!

Strike up the band and sing Rocky Top, the Volunteers are headed back to Omaha! The Vols took down the Golden Eagles of Southern Mississippi 5-0 in game three of the Hattiesburg super regional Monday night. This is the sixth College World Series appearance for the Volunteers and their second in the last three seasons.

            Griffin Merritt got the night started for Tennessee when his single to right field scored Christian Moore in the bottom second inning. Zane Denton added to the lead in the fifth with a monster three-run homer to put the Vol's up 4-0. The scoring did not stop there Maui Ahuna added another bomb in the seventh to put the Volunteers up five runs to zero. While the balls were flying the pitching was no slouch either. Drew Beam was excellent in his six innings of work, allowing zero runs and seven hits while walking one and striking out seven. After Beam's night was over the bullpen continued to shut down the Southern Miss lineup. Aaron Combs and Chase Burns did not allow a hit while walking only one batter combined.

            While Tennessee did get the job done in Hattiesburg, there was some added pressure on the boys from Rocky Top. After losing game one the Vols had to win two straight on the road to make an appearance in Omaha. They would take game two from the Golden Eagles during the second game on Sunday leading the rubber match on Monday night which sent the Volunteers to the College World Series.

            The Vols join two other teams out of the Southeastern Conference in Omaha. The Gators from Florida and the LSU Tigers are also making the trip to Nebraska. Joining the three programs out of the SEC are Wake Forest, Virginia, TCU, Stanford, and Oral Roberts. Right now, the odds-on favorites to win the College World Series are the Demon Deacons from Wake Forest who are number one in the national polls and have compiled a 52-10 record. The Volunteers hit the diamond in Omaha for the time since 2021 when they face fellow SEC member LSU on their quest to gain that first College World Series title. The first pitch is scheduled for six o'clock central time on Saturday, June 17.


Alek Kisiel / WNSR Columnist 

@AlekKisiel - Twitter




MLB in the Music City?

When you ask someone to describe baseball, they might tell you the ivy at Wrigley Field, the Yankee pinstripes, or even peanuts and crackerjacks. Baseball has been in the hearts and minds of millions around the country for generations. There is nothing like putting on your favorite player's jersey and singing take me out to the ball game while watching your favorite team. But for sports fans in Nashville and the Central Tennessee area Major League Baseball has not found its foothold.

            With the recent news of the Oakland Athletics moving from the Bay area to Sin City many people in the Nashville area are thinking why not us? The sports market has boomed in the last two decades, the city went from having no major sports franchises to two successful teams the Tennessee Titans and the Nashville Predators. Nashville has also added Nashville SC of the MLS which had its inaugural season in 2020. This leads many to believe that Nashville might be the right spot for an MLB franchise.

            Nashville and Tennessee as a whole have no shortage of baseball fandom. College baseball is huge in Tennessee and the South in general. Vanderbilt has been a powerhouse on the diamond winning two College World Series Championships since 2014 and has made five appearances in the World Series since 2011. In 2023 Vanderbilt, Tennessee, and Lipscomb all made the NCAA tournament with Volunteers currently in the Super Regionals against Southern Mississippi. On the MLB side, the Braves also have a strong following in the region along with transplants from other parts of the country who bring their fandom of other teams with them.

            The question is how is Nashville going to acquire this team? The Oakland A's leaving Oakland behind has given thought to an already established MLB team picking up shop and moving it the Music City. Only one real candidate for relocation and that is the Tampa Bay Rays. The Rays struggle with attendance in St. Petersburg, Florida, and their ballpark Tropicana Field is considered by most to be one of the worst facilities not just in baseball but all of sports. There have also been rumors of a departure from St. Petersburg for years with locations such as Nashville, Charlotte, and Montreal being listed.

              The more realistic option for a team in Nashville is expansion. The MLB has wanted to expand to different markets and Nashville is a prime candidate. However, many things need to happen to get the ball rolling on the idea. There need to be investors who can pay to have the franchise in the city and there needs to be a way to break ground on a stadium, whether it is privately funded or by city tax dollars.

              The Nashville sports market has made been on the rise and a Major League Baseball franchise could be the icing on the cake. Having an MLB team in Nashville would truly make the city one of the top markets in the country and could lead to more expansions like NBA or WNBA. So the question is not if, it is when? 


Written by: Alek Kisiel / WNSR Columnist 

@AlekKisiel - Follow on Twitter



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