Top 25 Highest Rated Sports Talk Stations For December 2012

Top 25 Highest Rated Sports Talk Stations For December 2012

Published Jan. 23, 2013 12:00 a.m. ET

Last year Outkick the Coverage started publishing a seasonal guide to the top-rated sports talk radio stations in the country. That's because amazingly this information wasn't available anywhere. If you wanted to know which station dominated its market more than any other, you couldn't find that information anywhere. I thought that was illogical.

Our top 25 rankings for the early fall showed that Detroit's WXYT was the nation's top rated sports station. 

But now the ratings are in for December 2012, the final month of the year, and we decided to dive back in and see how the top 25 sports talk stations in the country stacked up for the final month of the year. 

And there were some changes. 


As a preliminary, these ratings are the broadest possible measures of overall listeners. That is, listeners ages six+ from six in the morning until midnight. This is also every market that uses Arbitron's people meter. So it is only the top 50+ largest cities/markets in the country. That is, if your city is smaller than this, it isn't using the Arbitron people meter so it's not comparable. If your large city is not listed in our top 25 -- this means you Atlanta, Los Angeles, San Diego, Miami, et al. -- it means no station in your city was highly rated enough to register in our top 25.

Also, this does not reflect specific ratings for individual shows. Given how broad the audience measurements are, all successful shows from six in the morning to seven at night would rate higher than the overall ranking average of the station. Remember that this is also a measurement of all persons ages six+, so the percentage of men, the target audience for sports talk, would be substantially higher for all of these stations as well.

Finally, and we always get this question, this does not reflect the total number of listeners, this is simply the highest rated. The most listened to sports talk station on this list is WFAN in New York City because it's in a market of 18 million people. But WFAN is just the tenth highest rated sports talk station in the country. Inevitably, some people in the comments cannot understand the difference between ratings and market size. So this is my attempt to explain that to the idiots. Inevitably, these same people will still be confused.

So without further ado, here are the nation's 25 highest rated sports talk radio stations:

1. Nashville's 104.5 the Zone 6.0

2. Detroit's WXYT 5.2

3. Boston WBZ 4.4

4. Minnneapolis KFXN 4.3

5. San Francisco KNBR 4.2

5. Baltimore WJZ 4.2

7. Pittsburgh KDKA 3.4

8. Philadelphia WIP-FM 3.3

8. Raleigh WCMC 3.3

10. Providence WVEI 3.2

10. New York City WFAN 3.2

12. Memphis WMFS 3.1

13. Boston WEEI 3.0

14. Seattle KIRO 2.9

15. Dallas KTCK 2.8

15. Chicago WSCR 2.8

15. St. Louis WXOS 2.8

18. Tampa WDAE 2.7

18. Cleveland WKRK 2.7

20. Portland KXTG 2.3

20. Denver KKFN 2.3

20. Norfolk/Va. Beach WVSP 2.3

23. Phoenix KTAR 2.2 

23. Washington, D.C. WTEM 2.2

25. Houston KILT 2.1