Houston sports is now officially on the map. Gow Media announced the launch of its newest venture: Houston-based sports website SportsMap, which will feature an ambitious variety of written, video, and audio content about Houston's sports scene.
SportsMap is the latest addition to the multi-platform media company’s fast-growing business ventures, which also include CultureMap; ESPN 97.5 FM and SportsMap 94.1 FM in Houston; the SBNation national radio network; PodcastArena; and Gow Media Audio Publishing, an audio book hosting site.
SportsMap, the brainchild of Gow Media CEO David Gow, will work in tandem with CultureMap and the other properties to build the company’s profile.
“SportsMap.com is an exciting next step for our company, as we believe we have all the ingredients for success,” Gow said. “With Fred Faour, we have a leader for SportsMap.com with both experience and vision. With our two sports radio stations and our national sports radio network, we have more sports experts in our building than any media company in the city.
"And with CultureMap.com, we have a strong digital platform. With all these assets and our combined promotional power, we believe SportsMap.com can become the leading online destination for sports content in Houston.”
SportsMap will be directed by Faour, a Gow Media vice president who will act as the website's editor-in-chief in addition to continuing to host The Blitz on ESPN 97.5 and heading up the audio book division.
SportsMap will have day-to-day coverage of all the important local sports teams, but will also weigh in on soccer, gambling, the outdoors, health and fitness, auto, and more. Initially it will focus solely on Houston.
“We want to be the one-stop shop for all things sports in Houston,” Faour said. “Whether you are watching or participating, we will have you covered. We want to bring together the sports knowledge of our radio team with the concept of CultureMap to create something truly unique.”
The site will feature written content initially, but will soon launch daily video content. In addition to the Gow Media team, several writers will be contributing.
“We have some exciting new talent that will really help the site, especially in the video area,” Faour said. He added that SportsMap would cover the Astros comprehensively during the playoffs as well as the Texans, focusing more on commentary and analysis than game coverage.
“That’s the strength of our talent — in-depth analysis and opinion,” he said.
Before starting a radio career, Faour won multiple national and state awards as sports editor at the Houston Chronicle and oversaw the paper’s online sports coverage. He more recently launched and managed the snarky sports and pop culture site houstonsportsandstuff.com.
In addition to his duties at Gow, Faour has written a book on horse race handicapping, authored two gambling audio books, and is one of the most prominent horse handicappers in the country. He also is a sports handicapper for pregame.com and has a novel, Jesus Just Left Chicago, set to be released in 2018 along with a movie adaptation.
“I believe SportsMap will be our most creative venture yet," Faour said. "The Houston sports scene is in a great place, and we are thrilled to put it all on SportsMap.”
SportsMap's debut is planned to be officially announced at a launch party at Hotel ZaZa in Houston on October 4.