Thursday, February 8, 2018


Written By: Craig Shelton

HOUSTON - HMW is the acronym for Houston Media Watch. Houston Media Watch is the Houston Media Watchdog website established by myself along with Lamont Mann back in February of 2010. When we launched the website and announced what the focus of the website would be it's an understatement to say it was not met with great fanfare among Houston media members. The purpose and focus of Houston Media Watch was to monitor and report on the performance of local and national media outlets, in particular those associated with the sports talk radio community here in Houston. 

Contrary to beliefs the bloggers associated with HMW where are always encouraged to be independent thinkers and to always report what you believe to be true and what you honestly feel in regard to the media establishments we monitored. 

The first article published on HMW was written by myself focusing on Rich Lord of CBS Radio/Sports Radio 610.  Soon after, I followed with a top-five listing of Houston's five worst sports talk radio host which included the likes of Rich Lord and Matt Jackson to name a couple host listed. In the years to follow HMW offered numerous rankings of Houston's best and worst performances by sports talk radio host.  

I decided to reach back to get 2018 off to a start by offering up the top five Houston sports talk host as of January 2018.

#5. Seth Payne

Talented ex-athlete. Another example of a guy working with questionable talent in regard to how much that talent goes toward putting Seth in the best position to be successful. Smart guyy who does not take a lot of chances but will surprise you from time to time and stand for something.

Seth is mostly pollyanna in his methods and does not come off as relatable too many in a very diverse market.

Seth is held back by a country club organization who does not reflect the ideals of diversity.

#4.  John Granato

Granato is best defined as Old Faithful. Just when you think there's nothing worth listening to and the market has dropped to its worst performance level, you remember that Granato is on air. You can always count on Granato for some light-heartd sports talk and a good laugh. 

It's fair to suggest that Granato is somewhat underappreciated for his longevity in the market. Granato has better sports knowledge than often given credit for. Particular when it comes to baseball. 

Granato has often been paired with undesirablea tlent in terms of a co-host but always seems to put on his best regardless of who he works with.

Continuity is Granato's enemy.

#3.  ND Kalu

Kalu being a former athlete is far from the traditional AM radio, good old boy network "radio pollyanna guy." What Kalu is though can be summed up, or defined in one word as, likable. 

ND Kalu, along with Nate Griffin, may be the nicest guy not only in sports talk radio, but in the city of Houston. 

Kalu is likeable and it translate very well when he's on air.

It has been said that Kalu takes too many callers with poor content and poor communication skills.

#2. Josh Innes

Innes is Mr. Keep it real. Or depending on who you ask, Innes is Mr. Me Me Me. 

Regardless of how you see it, Innes is loaded with raw talent and a sincere zest and passion for his craft. In fact, the only thing equaling Josh's talent level is Josh's love of self and his self-absorbed personality. Innes can be at times the equivalent of the annoying five-year-old cousin at the family function. Innes also moves the needle.

Race baiter. 

#1. Charlie Palillo

Palillo is simply the standard of professionalism and excellence in sports talk radio in Houston. 

Charlie is a claimed both regionally and nationally for his accomplishments and is widely respected by his peers in an Industry where cynicism is more prevalent than admiration for one's colleagues.

Charlie is boring to listen to many listeners.

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