Fox Sports Radio’s Colin Cowherd is the latest host to take ownership of their podcasting output with a new network that gives the sports radio personality creative and ownership control. Cowherd is launching The Volume, a sports-focused podcast network that will be co-produced by iHeartMedia. It is similar to deals iHeart has with fellow sports talker Dan Patrick and syndicated radio host Charlamagne Tha God.
“There has never been a more exciting time to develop new sports content," said Cowherd in the announcement. “Podcasts have totally changed the game, and the expanded use of sports gambling makes this the perfect moment to launch this endeavor.”
The Volume becomes a second podcast network for Cowherd. In 2018 he teamed with iHeart’s Premiere Networks and Red Seat Ventures to launch The Herd Podcast Network. It includes The Herd with Colin Cowherd, the on-demand version of his daily syndicated Fox Sports Radio show, which had more than 100-million downloads last year. No changes are planned for The Herd Podcast Network which also features other podcasts hand-picked and curated by Cowherd.
The Volume will also offer a slate of podcasts that are focused on sports. It launches with five shows including The Colin Cowherd Podcast, a three-times-a-week show hosted by Cowherd. The roster also includes The Jenkins & Jonez Podcast, hosted by die-hard NBA fans LaJethro Jenkins and Dragonfly Jonez; Moneyline Monaco, which features comedian and sports gambling fanatic Alex Monaco offering his take on the biggest bets in sports; Oral Sessions with WWE commentator Renée Paquette; and Catchin' Fades in which former NFL player Aqib Talib dishes on the latest drama in pro football.
“We’re so excited to build on the incredible success of The Herd Podcast Network to launch this new sports network with Colin,” said Conal Byrne, President of the iHeartPodcast Network. “He has an amazing ear for talent and storytelling – and we want to support him any way we can in this incredible new medium where he’s already a leader in the sports genre.”
Under their alliance, iHeartMedia will handle show distribution and advertising sales for The Volume. It launches with the sports betting site FanDuel as its lead sponsor. “As mobile betting continues to enter the mainstream consciousness of fans, we are partnering with the indelible voices synonymous with sports. Few voices epitomize this more than Colin Cowherd,” said FanDuel CMO Mike Raffensberger in a statement.
In an interview with Bloomberg, Cowherd said the decision to do more in podcasting came last year when Premiere Networks told him that his podcast was sold-out while other shows had lost most of their advertisers because of the pandemic. Cowherd, who also hosts a daily show for Fox Sports 1 television network, said the venture will allow him to test ideas that may not fit into The Herd Podcast Network. And if they work out, his sole ownership of The Volume will allow him to profit from them if they connect with listeners.
Cowherd, 57, joins a growing number of national radio hosts that are exploring new ideas in podcasting. Radio personality Charlamagne Tha God launched the Black Effect Podcast Network with iHeartMedia last September to feature a variety of Black voices with content across a variety of genres. And last August syndicated sports radio personality Dan Patrick created The Dan Patrick Podcast Network in a partnership with iHeartMedia and Workhouse Media.