Clear Channel Cuts Could Mean The End Of Your Favorite Sports Talk Show

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Good lord. Things just keep getting worse in this economy, don't they? On what should be a triumphant day for Americans, radio giant Clear Channel decided to cut 9% of its workforce today, meaning 1,850 people within the company lost their job. What does that mean to me, you ask? Well Clear Channel runs a great number of Sports Talk stations, and some of your favorite shows could be going away. Sports by Brooks has some of the early casualties....

WDFN, which broadcasts Pistons games, whacked all of its local hosts, and will instead run Fox Sports Radio programming 24/7. The FLORIDA TIMES-UNION also reports severe cuts at WFXJ sports radio in Jacksonville. Where local personalities have been slashed.

There will be much more fallout in the next couple days, as job cuts become public market-by-market. Worst-hit will be sales staffs and local market personalities, who can be replaced by syndicated programming from ESPN Radio, Fox Sports Radio and Sporting News Radio. (But I’ve also confirmed some layoffs at CC-operated Fox Sports Radio.)

Not yet known is the effect the layoffs will have on L.A.-sports station KLAC-AM, which recently lost the Lakers broadcast rights to local competitor KSPN-AM. That said, I’ve been hearing rumors for months about the demise of KLAC’s sports format.
Just depressing. Usually they save this level of carnage for a "Black Friday" of sorts, but I guess every company is stepping up and making changes. Unfortunate yes, but these are the times we live in. Hope all of you CCers that read the site, find work out there real soon.

Clear Channel cutting 1,850 jobs (Biz Journals)
CC’s Cutbacks To Spell End Of LA Sports Station? (Sports by Brooks)

Posted by Awful Announcing at 4:57 PM


Chad Hartman of KFAN in Minneapolis was axed. This was not surprising because he's terrible and was only employed because of his father.

Jan 20, 2009, 5:16:00 PM  

It's sad to see "Stoney and Wojo" get canned at WDFN. They were fun to listen to even though I don't live remotely close to Detroit.

49er16 said...
Jan 20, 2009, 5:18:00 PM  

@49er16: I've listened to Stoney and Wojo from the beginning, and the entire station in general, whether it was Jamie & Greg, the Sports Doctors, the Fabulous Sports Blob, Rome, even the ill-fated Junkies "National" show, until just this morning.

I guess it was time.

Jan 20, 2009, 5:27:00 PM  

I used to work at Clear Channel in Rochester. I was a promotions director and occassional fill-in host on the sports station there (WHTK). I do know that the main producer for the local sports show there lost his job. Overall, 10-12 people lost their job (including friends that I have known for years). I know that many people are not fans of Clear Channel, and in many cases, it is justified. However, I can just say that to see so many friends lose their position on a day that should have sent optimism through the country really, really sucks. They aren't the people that made everything generic in radio. Good luck to those in all CC markets who lost their jobs. There is a light at the end of the tunnel.

William said...
Jan 20, 2009, 5:30:00 PM  

The worst part of this is that the people effected are punished with nightly Denny Hocking idiocy.

GMoney said...
Jan 20, 2009, 5:39:00 PM  

Heading closer and closer to socialism with bigger and bigger government is not a triumphant day. GW was no champion of limited government but BO is going to amp up the spending to a whole new level and is likely to drive this recession into a depression especially if successful in nationalizing health care.

Math Geek said...
Jan 20, 2009, 5:54:00 PM  

As a former Detroiter, I'm also sorry to see WDFN go. They were the first sports talk station in Detroit; but they got muscled aside by a deeper-pocketed rival that put their sports talk on FM as well as AM.

I wonder how much of CC's cutbacks are because of station financials, and how much is because of the insane quantity of debt the company has rolled up in the course of buying 10% of all the radio stations in America. (And then, doing the media equivalent of strip-mining their properties by ruthless cost-cutting to the point where many of their stations are unlistenable.)

jvwalt said...
Jan 20, 2009, 5:55:00 PM  

CC sucks balls ... wouldn't be surprised if they did this purposely today so that most people wouldn't notice .... if they'd cut people like MJ Kelly who suck they could have saved what little goood they had

W_Rabb said...
Jan 20, 2009, 5:59:00 PM  

Favorite show... you mean Clear Channel is gonna cancel Mike and Mike?

alex said...
Jan 20, 2009, 6:00:00 PM  

Thank you to Math Geek for bringing politics into people losing their jobs...clearly, I was not endorsing or slamming Obama in any way, but instead trying to make a point about CC, my former employer.

William said...
Jan 20, 2009, 6:04:00 PM  

I take it Stripped Down Sports didn't help save WDFN. Oh well. I can listen to Chris Myers & Andrew Siciliano!

/anything but that

Jan 20, 2009, 6:27:00 PM  

CC has killed American radio. The douchebag Mays brothers - who couldn't cue a record or even read the baseball scores - took their old man's money and company and killed it dead. They came from the billboard business - the same Bud board works in LA and Laconia - radio will too. How does your market model look now assholes!

Mike Raffone said...
Jan 20, 2009, 6:30:00 PM  

Stay Classy CC... maybe now radio will return to the era of LOCAL OWNERSHIP!

savetheshield said...
Jan 20, 2009, 6:47:00 PM  

Urge to do something obvious with "Black Friday" RISING....

.....and gone

It's a new era...of restraint.

Anonymous said...
Jan 20, 2009, 8:31:00 PM  

Hey, savetheshield...I expect royalties manana! I own all rights here to the phrase "Stay Classy, (name here)". :P

JamesCraven said...
Jan 20, 2009, 9:49:00 PM  

Oh well. I can listen to Chris Myers & Andrew Siciliano!

I was wrong. Big Ears Siciliano (who I actually liked) is gone too.

Jan 20, 2009, 10:07:00 PM  

William, I was commenting on the "triumphant day" statement made by AA. I am tired of all the overblown hype of the day.

Math Geek said...
Jan 20, 2009, 10:57:00 PM  


you mean no more Vic The Brick in LA? really?


questionmark said...
Jan 21, 2009, 1:33:00 AM  

I'm still trying to figure out how yesterday was a "triumphant day for Americans".

By my calculations, this is about the 56th inauguaration. We've done this before, people.

The way people act, Jesus Christ himself is residing at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Anonymous said...
Jan 21, 2009, 9:04:00 AM  

The cuts were originally scheduled to be a "Black Friday," but last Thursday, someone in CC Corp. decided that if they waited until yesterday it'd get lost in the shuffle of Obama Day.

The only thing sadder is that the Dickey's were sitting in Atlanta going "FUCK! WHY DIDN'T WE THINK OF THAT!"

It was a weird day for CC, as lots of markets are now under consolidated managment, so people in one office would hear about the cuts by their GM in one city, then get to wait a few hours for the death squad to come marching into their building with the sweeping carnage behind them.


Adam said...
Jan 21, 2009, 10:05:00 AM  

Un-fricking-believable. I wondered why I was hearing Fricke last night at work, and now I know. BTW, the Sports Animal isn't cutting anyone as far as I know. Sileo actually gained a station (much to the dismay of many sports radio fans here in Florida) when 930 the Fox in Jax made their cuts. Duemig isn't going anywhere anytime soon, and Ron Diaz and Ian Beckles aren't either. As for the other folks at the Animal who host shows during the weekend (Darek Sharpe, Justin Powlowski), their shows might go bye-bye but I don't think they're getting cut. Good thing I'm in the Postal Service and not in sports talk radio, which is kind of a dream job for me...

Chris in Tampa said...
Jan 21, 2009, 11:42:00 AM  

Ben Maller, the overnight guy along with East coast midday guys Shemon and Washington and East coast prime timers Sciliano and Fernandez.

Also, Dan Patrick is replacing the midday guys and Chris Myers new cohost will be Steve Hartman from KLAC.

JamesCraven said...
Jan 23, 2009, 12:05:00 AM  

Post a Comment